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Tony Evans leaving Obsidian for BioWare


funcroc

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  • 4 weeks later...
What games did he work on? NWN2 + expansions?

 

Tony Evans worked on KOTOR2, NWN2, NX1, and NX2.

 

He's a great guy and obviously we miss him and wish him the best!

The study of history is a powerful antidote to contemporary arrogance. It is humbling to discover how many of our glib assumptions, which seem to us novel and plausible, have been tested before, not once but many times and in innumerable guises; and discovered to be, at great human cost, wholly false.

--Paul Johnson

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  • 1 year later...

Hmm... two years at New World Computing? I wonder what titles he worked on there (lots of great stuff coming out of NWC those years).

“He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice.” - Albert Einstein

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Man you are fast :ermm:

“He who joyfully marches to music in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would surely suffice.” - Albert Einstein

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Uhg, Bioware? Really? Not a respectable company like Blizzard or Valve?

 

So...

 

Baldur's Gate - Best CRPG of our time is not respectable?

Neverwinter Nights - A CRPG that started some things for Obsidian, not respectable?

Knights of the Old Republic - Another CRPG that started some things for Obsidian, not respectable? Come on man.

Jade Empire - Okay, I get these being unrespectable

Sonic Chro - SHUT THE HELL UP SELF! myself OK myself

Dragon Age - You would be a fool to call this unrespectable

Mass Effect - I will kick you in the gut if you call any game in this series unrespectable.

 

Awards:

 

* Video Game Hall of Fame - ...

* 2010 Studio of the Year - This one award proves you wrong all the way.

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Mass Effect - I will kick you in the gut if you call any game in this series unrespectable.

I do not respect Mass Effect 1. Kick me!

 

Or Neverwinter Nights.

"Show me a man who "plays fair" and I'll show you a very talented cheater."
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Uhg, Bioware? Really? Not a respectable company like Blizzard or Valve?

 

So...

 

Baldur's Gate - Best CRPG of our time is not respectable?

Neverwinter Nights - A CRPG that started some things for Obsidian, not respectable?

Knights of the Old Republic - Another CRPG that started some things for Obsidian, not respectable? Come on man.

Jade Empire - Okay, I get these being unrespectable

Sonic Chro - SHUT THE HELL UP SELF! myself OK myself

Dragon Age - You would be a fool to call this unrespectable

Mass Effect - I will kick you in the gut if you call any game in this series unrespectable.

 

Awards:

 

* Video Game Hall of Fame - ...

* 2010 Studio of the Year - This one award proves you wrong all the way.

At the time of Krezack's original post I would agree with you that BioWare was one of the more respectable studios out there. But after DA2, I'd say the balance has shifted. The problem is that, even though they have all those classics under their belt, right now there's no telling what kind of silliness they'll decide to apply to their next title... I mean, Kinect support for ME3? Seriously? Is *that* what the series was missing and what you decided to spent your resources on!? And all the while, Blizzard and Valve just keep making good, solid, finished games. They take their time, they respect their franchises, and they get. the job. done. The same can't be said for BW. Not anymore.
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Shadow Thief of the Obsidian Order

My Backloggery

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...
Dragon Age 2 is a damn good game. way better than that overrated KOTOR and BG1 crap.

 

Oh! I get it! This was a joke! *whew* You had me worried that you were serious, I men yeah, any game with dudes in full plate armor that are beamed one at a time down from the Starship Enterprise, must be awesome... right? Oh, wait, no it was bad. DS3 is 100x better than DA2. Period.

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I think that Dragon Age 2 was the best Bioware's game, just after Mass Effect 2. It had great plot, cool characters and the best dialogs. I'm not fancy about their other games though... didn't like Baldur's Gate, nor NWN1.

Edited by Dabu
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Sorry for my english, it's not so good.

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  • 9 months later...

From Tony Evans' formspring

What was Dragon Age 2 development like? Was the decision to part ways with Bioware yours?

 

Dragon Age 2's development was very accelerated. It was the first BioWare game to my knowledge where the studio didn't have the luxury to take as long as they needed. The full game, start to finish was done in around 11 months. That's much like Obsidian's development of KoTOR 2, except Obsidian had around 2 dozen developers, while BioWare had about 180 (not including QA and Marketing).

 

Prior to starting at BioWare, I had several chats and email exchanges with Mike Laidlaw (DA2's lead designer) where I gave him feedback and ideas as he formulated his plans for the game. Then, when I came to Edmonton in early January 2010, I was one of the first designers on the project, along with Mike Laidlaw and David Gaider (lead writer). I was involved in providing more feedback on the design direction and story. Early on, I concepted gameplay features that didn't make it into DA2 due to time constraints, but will likely be part of DA3. As the DA:O DLC's were wrapping up, more designers and other developers began trickling onto the project, and we quickly went into full production.

 

My main responsibilities on DA2 were pretty varied, which was unusual for BioWare. Most of their designers specialize in particular disciplines, while I'm more of a generalist, or a "polymath" as Mike Laidlaw called me. So I shifted between writing, level/technical design, creating the new map system, assisting with audio, and dabbling in cinematics.

 

After DA2 was done, I spent several months directing a small prototype team, and rapidly iterating on puzzles and other game modes to complement and extend DA2's core gameplay. Several of the things we prototyped were included in DA2's DLC, and some others will perhaps be part of DA3 (I couldn't say for sure).

 

At the end of May 2011, BioWare Edmonton had a "reduction in force" (which is fairly common practice at the end of a project). The layoffs included me and some other designers. They wouldn't give me any specific reasons why, but they did say it was absolutely not performance related. My assumption was that they chose to layoff people who were not as firmly rooted at BioWare Edmonton. There are a lot of people at the studio who've been there for many, many years, and several couples who work together. Since I'd only been at BioWare for 18 months, and I didn't have any family also working there, I was perhaps a bit more expendable.

 

Though I didn't choose to leave BioWare, they actually did me a favor. I'm far too eclectic to be content for long in a studio like BioWare Edmonton. Plus, the very generous severance they provided allowed me to take the summer off (my first break longer than 2 weeks since I started in the game industry in 1998). I got to spend ample time with my family, work on personal projects, create a couple apps, and study casual and social games - which I've been interested in working on for years.

 

I value my experience at BioWare. I learned a whole lot, and I really enjoyed meeting and working with many of the talented developers at the studio. I'm still friends with several of them (some of whom I'll be seeing this weekend at Calgary's Comic Expo). :-)

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That link to the Free Radicals article is quite something. It seems to reinforce this notion that publishers don't care about quality, but only about releasing the game as quick as possible.

"Console exclusive is such a harsh word." - Darque

"Console exclusive is two words Darque." - Nartwak (in response to Darque's observation)

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