Interview with Pete Hines at GamesIndustry.biz:
Q: GamesIndustry.biz: The tree-branch dialogue looks to be pretty in-depth – does it become a major task keeping track of all that?
Pete Hines: It does, but we try and make sure that we’re not giving you responses just to give you responses. There’s an example early on with regard to the level of granularity, with exactly the kind of responses you would come up with based on how you want to play the game. Not everybody you talk to is going to have that many choices, but it is a snapshot of how you want to play the game.
Don’t try and figure out how we want you to finish a quest – you play it how you want to play it. Do you want to be good? Do you want to be bad? Do you want to be neutral? Do you want to double-cross this guy? Do you want to save the people? Do you want to blow the people up? It’s up to you to figure out how you want to handle the situation, and then hopefully, whatever wacky thing you come up with to try and respond to it, we’ve thought of that so that you think, “Awesome, I did that, and that’s what happened in the end, that’s really cool.”
And now it feels a lot more powerful for the player, and what you find is that whenever you make a game like this, people really push those edges. If you tell them they can do what they want, they’ll say “Oh really? What would happen if I set off a nuke inside the bar?”
And what happens? Well, exactly what you’d think, everybody dies, and so do you…they’ll test the edges of whether they can really do anything they want.[…]
Q: GamesIndustry.biz: You’re still on track for the Autumn release?
Pete Hines: Yes, we’re in alpha now, very pleased with how the development is going, where we’re at on all three platforms, and probably this summer we’ll put out a date that we have in mind.[…]
Q: GamesIndustry.biz: If Bethesda decided to remake Pac-Man, there would be a huge amount of attention, because of your track record, so with something like Fallout, with an existing fan base, was there a lot of additional pressure there to keep them happy?
Pete Hines: Well, we put a lot of pressure on ourselves. We don’t take on something like Fallout 3, and everything that it means – I don’t have to explain to most folks what Fallout is, it’s beloved and revered by a lot of people, and it’s a pretty big undertaking.
So we have a lot of pressure on ourselves not only doing the next Fallout game, but also we did pretty well on Oblivion, so the next follow-up to that, [ie Fallout 3], is always going to be under a pretty big microscope and have a lot to live up to.
So I don’t think that the size or fanaticism of the fanbase is a problem, I’d rather have that than have a bunch of people not care about what it is we’re doing. We’d much rather see the passion, it means a lot to us.