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Obsidian CEO Talks Inspiration From Mod Community For  Fallout: New Vegas

Obsidian CEO Talks Inspiration From Mod Community For Fallout: New Vegas

August 2, 2010 | By Staff

August 2, 2010 | By Staff
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More: Console/PC

Being a direct descendent of Black Isle Studios, Obsidian Entertainment is well-versed in the Fallout franchise. So when Fallout owner Bethesda Softworks commissioned the studio to develop the Fallout 3 follow-up, Fallout: New Vegas, it seemed like a natural choice.

But even though the studio is internally knowledgeable about Fallout, it was open to inspiration from the PC modding community, which influenced the decision to add a "hardcore" mode to Fallout: New Vegas, a new ammo system and other features.

"It's great whenever you're working with an engine or tools that have actually been released to the community," said Obsidian CEO Feargus Urquhart in a new Gamasutra feature interview. He worked on the first two classic Fallout games at Black Isle under Interplay.

"It's the hacker analogy," he explained. "It's like five programmers trying to stop a thousand hackers from doing something. It's the same thing here: you have all of these guys out there who are figuring out ways to use this technology and engine in ways no one originally intended."

He added, "And that happens internally as well, with our own internal engine, or when the guys are using the Bethesda stuff. You're just thinking, 'What happens if I do this?' And you're like, Wow! How did you make that?' You suddenly get these really cool things out of playing within this box. And that's what the modders do, because they can't recode everything. They don't have access to that, so they just start pushing and pulling."

"You get some really interesting things out of it. It was a good place for us to start, to look at all of the strange things they've been doing, even just to help us learn this engine and see what it can do."

The full interview with Urquhart also touches on staying true to the Fallout franchise, capturing a campy Americana vibe and his thoughts on Fallout 3.

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