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MonkeyLungs

March 4, 2016 Josh Sawyer interview ... last part kind of interesting.

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I think we're getting into the realm of hair splitting when we're talking about the semantics of "all but said" and "he said"... whatever, we all know he didn't confirm it, or deny it, simple marketing / PR spin. Yup, prolly will be an expansion, no, probably not any time in the immediate future. But its all speculation one way or t'other, so why argue about it?

Edited by Koth

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Did someone say they are making a tank MMO? Is that a thing? Also, why?

 

EDIT: If I had been a backer I would be kind of sad that they were making a different game after PoE, instead of continuing to craft this new world I had a hand in funding. I wonder if any of the backers feel that way?

 

What the hell? Out of Obsidian's 200 employees, they literally only have 20 of them working on Pillars. Throughout Obsidian's history, they have always been working on at least three games at the same time. As an independent studio, they pretty much *have* to. This isn't like Bioware where they constantly and only release Dragon Age and Mass Effect sequels because they have EA backing them.

 

 

So 10% of the company worked on Pillars of Eternity? That's pretty interesting. That's a super talented small group of people. The other 90% have a lot to live up to.

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20 is about all you can afford with POE's budget, yes. But no game ever has a constant team size, either; you tend to start small, push high, and constantly pull people off this project onto that. Not sure how much of that was happening with the POE crew.

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Most of the early success of Blizzard Entertainment came from Triforge, a group of 3 developer/designers. Who then went on to form Arena.net and Guild Wars. Small groups of badasses work well in the gaming industry.

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So 10% of the company worked on Pillars of Eternity? That's pretty interesting. That's a super talented small group of people.

 

 

If it was indeed so few (even aside from peripheral contributors like voice actors and so on), it really is an impressive feat.  There is a large amount of high quality artistic content in POE1.  I'm impressed that could be done even if all 20 of those people had been artists, never mind that some must have been programmers, testers, writers, musicians, etc.

 

Hopefully everyone involved didn't get totally burnt out, which can happen if projects are so intense that they demand very long hours over extended periods.

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I don't think that one should take the 20  figure too seriously as I believe it's just the assumption of one of our forum colleagues and not an official information. Common sense tells that during the core period of development the team size was way larger than 20. However, after release, the team continuously shrinks and at present it's quite probable that a small team of 20-ish people is supporting the game (mainly QA team, some support programmers and whatever other critical positions are still required).

Edited by kmbogd

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I don't think that one should take the 20  figure too seriously as I believe it's just the assumption of one of our forum colleagues and not an official information. Common sense tells that during the core period of development the team size was way larger than 20. However, after release, the team continuously shrinks and at present it's quite probable that a small team of 20-ish people is supporting the game (mainly QA team, some support programmers and whatever other critical positions are still required).

 

No, that's way off. Very, very few (non-MMO/etc) games have 20 people working on it full time after release, though it would be very nice if people could do this. And I can't remember the exact figures, but Obsidian has put the peak Eternity team size at 20-25. (Quick google shows this.)

 

An AAA game ~5 years ago would involve ballooning to ~100 people during peak development periods, e.g. a Bioware game, and similarly you saw ~50 people on KOTOR2; these days an Assassin's Creed game would involve hundreds of people across multiple international studios. But it is impossible for a game of POE's budget to maintain such team sizes for even a few months, and that's why everything in Fenstermaker's interview comes back down to limited manpower, resources and time. 

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​​

An AAA game ~5 years ago would involve ballooning to ~100 people during peak development periods, e.g. a Bioware game,

 

​Certainly true - the AAA studios can get up into the low hundreds of people on a single game, and their budgets can match or exceed that of a major Hollywood blockbuster movie.  Funnily enough though, I can't remember the last AAA-studio game I was really enthused about.  They're all very impressive in the way blockbuster movies are impressive, and they're fun in the way mindless Hollywood explosion-fests are fun, but somehow they also manage to be ... bland and a bit unsatisfying.  They too often feel soulless.  (​I won't say there are no counterexamples in either direction, mind). 

 

All the games that have garnered my interest in recent years have been from small teams (1-2 people) up through mid sized (dozens).  I'd wager this is partly because the AAA budget games are ​so             mind bogglingly expensive to make that they can't afford to take chances or make any design decisions that might alienate any of their potential audience.  If a publisher is shelling out hundreds of millions of US$ to make a game, they're gonna demand that you Hollywood the $#@! out of the thing.

​And that, in turn, is why I'm keen to see Obsidian continue developing the IP that they own in-house now.  They don't have to answer to anybody but themselves.  That alone does not guarantee good results, but it seems like an important ingredient.  Surely PoE1 is an auspicious start.

 

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