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Avellone & Sawyer at Trzynasty Schron

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Avellone & Sawyer at Trzynasty Schron

Interview - posted by Jason on Wed 23 December 2009, 08:01:14

Tags: Fallout 3 (Van Buren); Obsidian Entertainment

Codex regular Jim Cojones had a chat with Obsidian's Chris Avellone and Josh Sawyer for Doobie Brothers fansite Trzynasty Schron. Topics included Avellone's email address and Sawyer's awful design decisions.
Jim Cojones: SPECIAL system has been evolving through years - while the differences between the rules in first two games were minor, every next game game of the franchise changed some things - f.e. to include new playable races or to allow playing in real time mode. Working on Van Buren, You wanted to make some major changes too. Could You remind what were the most important ones and explain the reasons for including them?

Josh Sawyer: There were some relatively low-controversy changes like putting all of the skills on a universal starting scale and general tweaks to the attribute system, but the bigger changes had to do with what skills remained and what ones went away. For example, all "gun" skills (Small Guns, Big Guns, Energy Weapons) were rolled into a single Firearms skill. Doctor and First Aid were combined, etc.

My reasoning for combining skills was to balance usefulness across the board and (in the case of the Firearms skill) to reduce general skill list bloat. In retrospect, I also think that having a single Firearms skill would have alleviated the perceived content imbalance between the different weapon skills. I.e. it would be okay to have relatively few energy weapons and big guns if they all went into the general "firearms" pool with small guns making up the bulk of equipment used. Obviously it gives the Firearms-specializing player a lot of tools to work with, but you still can only use one weapon at a time.

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