Gamasutra invited Obsidian big shot Feargus Urquhart to spill the beans on New Vegas and things, starting off with his views on Fallout 3. <center></center><blockquote>What did you personally think of Fallout 3? FU: I don't want to just say that I really enjoyed it, because that feels like I'm just kissing ass: "It was a wonderful experience!" But I am not a guy who was caught up in the notion that Fallout had to be an isometric, turn-based experience. To me, Fallout was always just the feeling of the world. Maybe that's the difference between someone who makes a Fallout and someone who plays a Fallout. Whenever we think about Fallout, it's about the areas you put in there. Whether those areas are isometric or in 3D first-person, you do a lot of the same stuff. For me, Fallout was always the world. In playing Fallout 3, it just felt like being in that world. That was what was great for me. I really appreciated that. I like playing FPSes -- not so much on my console, though; I'm a PC FPS guy. The VATS system really melded everything together for me -- I get to be in the world looking out my own eyes, and I don't have to fight every fight in an actual physical skill-based way. I can use my stats and ammo and all that kind of stuff and see people's heads getting blasted off in Technicolor, which was awesome. [laughs] I think you take that. You take the feeling of being there. I really enjoyed it. I don't get to finish a ton of games, because -- I'm sure, like you -- there's usually a stack. I don't have to review them, so I don't finish everything. But I made a point of making sure that... No, you know what? I didn't have to make a point of it. I just finished it because I was having fun.</blockquote>Are you trolling us, Feargus? You are, aren't you. <center></center> They also touched on other subjects, such as how talking spore plants come to be.<blockquote>I think what some people mean is that Fallout 2 pushed the tongue-in-cheek material more. FU: Too much, actually. [laughs] In my mind, it did. I don't want to make excuses, but we were working pretty fast. Ultimately, we had to restart the game twice because we had started it before Fallout was done. Then, when it was done, [original Fallout leads] Tim [Cain], Leonard [Boyarsky], and Jason [Anderson] originally didn't want to go off and make Fallout 2. But after things got a little more positive, and we weren't crunching anymore, they said, "No, we want to do Fallout 2." Then they decided, "No, let's go start our own company," and they started [now-defunct RPG studio] Troika. Then we really had to restart it again, and so we only had about eight months to make Fallout 2, which is not a long time to make a big role playing game. We divided the work a lot -- one of our mistakes. I was the lead designer and running [Black Isle] at the time, and I made the mistake of not looking enough at what each of the designers was deciding to do. So they each thought, "Well, I'm putting some slapstick stuff in my area, but not everybody else is." Before you know it, everybody is. [..]</blockquote><center></center><blockquote>From my perspective, there's a bit of a narrative here, where you guys made the original super-hardcore Fallout games -- those were not forgiving games. Then Bethesda gets the series, and people on the hardcore fan sites like No Mutants Allowed complain about it. Then you guys get it again, and you're saying things like, "We're putting in a hardcore mode!" FU: Right. Yes. There were discussions early on, like, "Do we make stimpacks outside of hardcore mode?" That is, even when you're just playing on normal mode, maybe that's the one big change we make: stimpacks actually do take time to apply, no matter what. No more instant stimpack. There was a lot of talk about that, but in the end -- it's funny that it comes down to this one little thing -- it would just be too different. I think with a change like that, people would get it and think, "What's going on?" They would charge into battle and get their ass killed, going, "Wait! No! Argh!" The [separate hardcore mode] is better for those people, and it's also a great thing for someone who wants to play through the game again. They can play through the game, or a good portion of the game, and decide, "Okay. Now I want this to be a real challenge." Because it can really change how you play.</blockquote>There you have it: design matters. Thanks to WorstUsernameEver and a host of creeping gnomes.