Curmudgeon Gamer
Curmudgeoning all games equally.
20 April 2006
Condensed: Next-Gen's Oblivion Hindsight
Next-Gen's recent interview with Bethesda VP of PR and marketing Pete Hines takes too long to read, so I've prepared a condensed version. I think it captures the spirit of the original without sacrificing important details. Compare for yourself and let me know. Enjoy!

Q: Many reviews have been posted for Oblivion, virtually all stellar. Which reviewer kissed your rear best?

A: They were all great! My favorite, however, was the dude who said he'd carve our name into his arm with a rusty knife. Fans...er, reviewers just don't get any better than that!

Q: Your publisher recently announced that it has moved almost 2 million copies of Oblivion. Does it feel as totally awesome as it sounds?

A: Yes.

Q: How did the hype generated by previews affect mindset of the Oblivion team? Did you get like a God-complex or anything?

A: I think the previews are uplifting from the standpoint that it's gratifying to know people are interested in what you're doing. I think we were all aware of the high expectations, but I'm not sure if they fazed us. Plus, we have really high expectations for ourselves. In fact, I'm my biggest fan.

Q: How important is a monster budget when making a triple-A -- strike that -- quadruple-fricking-A title like Oblivion? Ballpark, how much did the game cost to create?

A: It's definitely not possible to do this without a big team and a lot of resources. Obviously we don't give out specific figures, but "a lot" or "a great deal" are decent estimates. Actually "monster" is perfect. Good job, nailing that figure spot-on.

Q: Thanks. You rock, man.

A: I know.

Q: Anyway, why does Bethesda insist on making these absolutely mind-blowingly enormous games? Is it simply your deep understanding of "size matters"?

A: You could say that. That's just what Elder Scrolls games are all about.

Q: Some crack-addled developers say that with an open-ended game, you have to sacrifice a good deal of the story, as a lot of the action taking place is out of the creators' hands. Does a day go by when you don't want to give those idiots an open-handed slap across the mouth?

A: No, not really. But I think our 2 million copies sold will shut them up.

That said, our big, open-ended games are all about the story, or stories. We give you dozens and dozens of stories you can participate and you can pick and choose which ones to follow through on, or ignore them all and go out and just explore and kill stuff or pick flowers or whatever. Who doesn't want to spend $60 on a game where you pick flowers? Gotta justify that Xbox 360 price somehow!

Q: What other types of downloadable Oblivion content is on the way? Is there much more coming?

A: Oh, sure. We held a bunch of cheesy little stuff back from the version we shipped just so we could sell it online later. We're very down with the whole easy money thing.

Q: Wasn't this an awesome interview?

A: Yes, it was. You're very good at it. See you after we ship our next game!

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--Matt Matthews at 22:29
Comment [ 1 ]

Comments on this post:

LOL, nicely done.

By Blogger Kafka, at 21 April, 2006 17:13  

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