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Team Diary
 
A BRIEF HISTORY OF CYRODIIL
 
A BRIEF HISTORY OF CYRODIIL
 
IT'S QUIET ... ALMOST TOO QUIET
 
IT'S QUIET ... ALMOST TOO QUIET
 
OBLIVION COLLECTOR'S EDITION
 
OBLIVION COLLECTOR'S EDITION
 
MAGICAL MYSTERY MEAT
 
MAGICAL MYSTERY MEAT
 
THE DARKER SIDE OF CYRODIIL
 
THE DARKER SIDE OF CYRODIIL
 
E3 - FEAR AND LOATHING IN LA
 
E3 - FEAR AND LOATHING IN LA
 
TO THE DEATH, OR TO THE PAIN?
 
TO THE DEATH, OR TO THE PAIN?
 
NOW YOU SEE ME, NOW YOU DON'T
 
NOW YOU SEE ME, NOW YOU DON'T
 
More
 
E3 - Fear and Loathing in LA
 
Pete Hines -- Vice President of PR and Marketing
 

E3

Pete HinesFor some, the name elicits grand images: the best the gaming world has to offer under one roof, for three days, in an assault on the senses unlike anything in the world. In truth, that's a fair assessment. If you're a gamer, it's pretty much nirvana. If, however, your job entails preparing for this extravaganza, your excitement for it can range from fear to loathing to…no, that's pretty much it, fear and loathing, in Los Angeles.

When the biggest names in the industry get together to show off the biggest games they have to offer, it's a lot of pressure. If you want to run with the big boys, you'd better do something that rises above the noise. That is, essentially, my job. Figure out how to get our games, and in this case Oblivion, to stand out from (and above) everything else. I'm a PR/Marketing guy. This is my story.

E3 LogoMy philosophy, and therefore Bethesda's, has always been that one way to stand out is to go against standard convention at the show. Escape the noise and lights and heat and masses and set yourself apart. Starting at last year's show, actually even before then, Todd and I had agreed that we wanted to show Oblivion in its own mini-theater. Someplace off the show floor, a room with some comfortable seats, dim lights, air conditioned, a big honkin' plasma TV, and a really cool demo. Most of that is pretty easy to pull off if you know what you're doing, the last part can be tricky.

Not that we don't know how to give a good demo. I've got a stack of game covers that says otherwise. But there's a big difference between a one-time demo and something you have to show over and over, for hours at a time, three days in a row, and never have it screw up. Because the people that come to our demos do so by appointment, and they get an appointment because they're someone we feel we have to impress. Heaven help us if the demo crashes in the middle of a demo to somebody really important.

So we've spent months talking about what the demo would include, and weeks and weeks working diligently at it. What parts of the game to show, what happens in those areas, different kinds of combat, magic, stealth, dialogue, our Radiant AI…everything. Most of that ends up being Todd's call. He figures out what parts of the game look the best, and work together, and tell the story of what this game is about and what lets you do.

E3 ExpoSo we've got amazing forests, killer dark dungeons, and grand cities. We show interiors and exteriors, dialog, quests, fast travel, and more. We show them the new combat system, a taste of stealth gameplay, some of our magic system…you get the idea (and I'll bet it makes you salivate, eh?) It's a great cross-section of the game in about 25 minutes.

Now, most of that we had figured out about six weeks ago, except the last part of the demo, which we completely trashed and replaced a week ago. That's not something I recommend trying at home, by the way. Changing your demo with less than a week before lockdown is pretty gutsy, but you can't hit home runs unless you swing for the fences. We have a lot of amazingly talented people here and the last part of the demo went from being okay to being fantastic in the course of a weekend, maybe less. And, much like releasing a game, knowing what the demo should show, and having it built is one thing, having it just right and squashing bugs is another. After all, this is a game still in development and so not everything is working perfectly.

So, we've had a lot of people spend a lot of nights and weekends in the office the last few weeks going through the demo over and over and over again. Figure out what's not working, fix it, try again, find next thing not working just right, wash, rinse, repeat. It is a long, sometime frustrating, but ultimately rewarding process for everyone on the team, none of whom (save for a couple of us) will be there to see the reaction from folks when they see the demo. They'll have to wait for the previews, articles, or debriefs from us after the show to find out what people really thought. But having seen the demo countless times by now, I'm incredibly confident that people are going to be amazed, even the few people on the planet who have seen it. I really think it's that good.

E3 FloorBut it doesn't stop there, because for everyone at the show who doesn't get to see the demo, as well as all of you that don't get to go to the show at all, we wanted to have a really amazing trailer that showed some killer gameplay footage. Think of it as a much shorter demo with cool music and a famous voice you'll probably recognize instantly. That too was no small feat either. Not only were we trying to make a killer trailer, but we were making a killer trailer in high definition. Capturing HD footage is an all-new kind of pain I hope none of you ever have to experience. If you're curious, just ask producer Gavin Carter what it's like. He and Steve Green, our video guy, went to extraordinary lengths to get some great footage to share with you.

To put that footage together into something meaningful and dramatic we worked with a great company called The Ant Farm that has done trailers for everything from the Lord of the Rings movies to Spiderman 2 to Halo 2. They did a terrific job in helping us come up with the direction and flow of the trailer and make it something that really reflects the game we're making. We're incredibly proud of it and hope you enjoy it when it comes out the first day of E3. Download the biggest version your bandwidth can handle, it'll be worth it.

So as you can see we've been fairly busy lately. We know you guys constantly thirst for info, but given the amount of things you're going to get next week, we hope it's been worth the wait. New screenshots, a trailer, new game info, accounts from numerous people that will have seen the game first hand…it's going to be great. As always we'll be on the boards to answer questions and see your reactions to what's going on. Our fans are at the heart of everything we do and we know that if it doesn't impress you guys first and foremost, we're in trouble. So thanks for your patience, and enjoy next week. See you on the boards.

 
 
Now Available!
 
Order Oblivion for PLAYSTATION 3
 

Order The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion for PLAYSTATION®3 at the Bethsoft Store.

 
 
Now Available!
 
Order Shivering Isles for Windows
 

Order The Elder Scrolls IV: Shivering Isles for Windows at Take2games.com

 
 
Now Available!
 
Official Oblivion Plugins at www.OblivionDownloads.com
 

Download official Oblivion plug-ins for PC at OblivionDownloads.com

 
 
Soundtrack
 
Morrowind and Oblivion Soundtrack Available through DirectSong
 
The Oblivion and Morrowind soundtracks are now available to buy for the first time anywhere; exclusively through DirectSong.
 
 
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