Pagliarulo Talks Inspiration, Story and Fans on Fallout 3
Fallout 3 lead designer Emil Pagliarulo gives Next Generation the goods on the inspiration and storyline behind Fallout 3. He also gets into how much advice a company should take from a fan base, especially one as outspoken as Fallout’s, before you stop taking it.
Pagliarulo knows quite a bit about inspiration and storyline. This “self-professed literature geek” is the developer behind the incredible, devilishly fun Dark Brotherhood story line in Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. He also came in at #24 of the Hot 100 Developers list this year. He believes in pulling inspiration from as many different sources as possible to create somethi9ng new rather than rehashing someone else’s style.
“Life itself is pretty fascinating if you look at it. There’s a lot of inspiration to be drawn out there. I think that people sometimes make a mistake when they limit their inspiration.”
Story can make a good game great or merely mediocre. It takes both writing talent and an understanding of how videogames work to write a solid storyline for a game.
“…It sometimes seems like a good idea to attract a big name writer or an established writer in either the comic book field or some other medium [to work on your game], but the fact is, writing for a videogame is a very specific beast. You have to understand how to compliment the gameplay with your fiction, and the best writer in the world, if he doesn’t understand videogames, can’t make that happen.”
As for Fallout‘s die hard fans, Pagliarulo says the trick is knowing when to stop trying to please everyone and put out the best game you can.
“You listen to the fans and respect their ideas, but once you start designing a game that they want to make specifically, then you can get yourself into trouble. One of the things that I love about Bethesda, and that we all love about working here, is we’re all pretty hardcore gamers and we know what we want, we know what’s fun, we know what we like and so we design for each other. We’re our own best audience.
So with Fallout in particular, we’re comfortable that the game is coming out this year—we can finally say that. The game is coming out this year, fall 2008. Knowing where we are in the project and all the work that is finished and all the work we still have to do, I think we’re all so wrapped up in the game that we’re creating, that there just comes a point where you just can’t worry what the hardcore fanbase is going to scream at you about on the forums, you know? You have to make the game that you’re making and know that it’s a good one and continue with that.”
Fallout 3 is slated for a Fall 2008 release for PC, PS3 and Xbox 360.
via Next Generation