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Things You Were Too Afraid to Ask: Aaron 'Hoffa' Hoffman

HoffaThe latest staff member to be gently tickled with our Sword of Interrogation +3 is part-time Australian and Lead Environment Artist Aaron 'Hoffa' Hoffman. Aaron was part of the Q3F mod team that went on to become Splash Damage and previously got to work his artistic environmental magic on Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars. He's also the only member of the team with a pilots license, but so far that hasn't helped him get to our cake-filled kitchen any faster.

To find out more about Aaron, how he ended up at Splash Damage, and what tapir-shaped zeppelins have to do with all this, gaze upon his megatexture-coated staff profile.

Splash Damage Explodes with Talent

We're delighted to announce that several more of what we refer to internally as Awesome Guys have joined the team here at Splash Damage. Among them are Dean 'Deano' Calver (Heavenly Sword, Silent Hill 2) as Lead Programmer, Fabio 'pappagheno' Bonvicini (Black, Harry Potter) as Animation Technical Director, Mattias 'dof' Engström (World in Conflict) as Senior Technical Designer, Oliver 'Kensai' Jauncey (Mass Effect, Timesplitters 2) as Senior Programmer, and Mark 'static_mover' Lack (Heavenly Sword) as Senior Environment Artist. Check out the official press release for all the details along with punchy quotes and a complimentary pun.

In completely and utterly related news, we have several more positions we're looking to fill - sail over to the Jobs section for those.

Currently Hurling Controllers / Mice At... Calm Before The Storm Edition

We're slowly creeping towards what's looking to be another completely insane holiday season littered with great releases. Among others, Fable 2, Quantum of Solace, Gears of War 2, Mirror's Edge, Far Cry 2 and of course Bethesda's post-apocalyptic juggernaut Fallout 3 are all coming out within the next month, so this is promising to be a great time for gamers.

And now, let's see what we've been playing:

CAL's ETQW Division in Full Swing, EnemyTerritory.tv Covers All

The latest season of the Cyberathlete Amateur League's Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars division is in full swing and the boys over at EnemyTerritory.tv are there to bring you all the latest coverage, ranging from weekly match previews to regular match shoutcasts, topped off with on-demand goodness. Greased and the gang are doing a fantastic job of serving up all the latest CAL carnage, so sail over the ET.TV news page for the latest scheduled 'casts and look for a preview of that week's matches every Monday.

Things You Were Too Afraid to Ask: Chris 'Thematic' Dawson

ThematicAfter months of careful planning, we finally managed to trap the ever-elusive Chris 'Thematic' Dawson for our latest staff interview. Chris mainly wears the Producer hat here at Splash Damage (and a pretty hat it is), which means he crafts elaborate spreadsheets and flowcharts that somehow result in things staying on schedule. It's like magic! Prior to coming to Splash Damage, Chris produced at various big publishers, including Atari and UbiSoft, and had a hand in a great many titles.

To find out more about Chris, how he wound up at Splash Damage, his previous work, and much more, check out his macro-filled pie-chart-shaped staff profile.

Currently Hurling Controllers / Mice At... Metal Gear Solid

Here it is, the latest installment of Things We're Playing. Metal Gear Solid 4 is undoubtedly the highest profile release since we last hurled controllers and/or mice and it's proving to be a rather divisive title. Fans of the series will undoubtedly love this latest installment while everyone else might say things like "What the crumples is going on?" or just shake their head in silence. Rather than trying to make sense of it all, let's just move on. We actually have two first time posters this week, with Programmer Arne Olav 'ao' Hallingstad and Production Assistant Joe 'Rex-TheGrunt' Gibson both typing up lots of words for our eyes to choke on. Here are this week's wondrous tales, then:

Community Interview: EnemyTerritory.tv

With their regular match shoutcasts, on-demand videos, and even a podcast, EnemyTerritory·tv has had huge impact on the competitive scene for Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars. The team behind the site recently flew out to QuakeCon 2008, where they provided the official match coverage for Activision's ETQW tournament at QuakeCon 2008 and also interviewed Splash Damage's Jared 'jRAD' Hefty and Dave 'ducks' Johnston. With that in mind, we decided to see if we could fit the entire ET.TV crew into a standard box of mints and failing that, interview them about EnemyTerritory.tv.

Suffice to say, despite using the largest hammer we could find, the mint thing was a surprisingly messy no-go, so head on over to the ETQW Community Site to read our chat with ET.tv, starring Mattc0m, GreasedScotsman, stlava, space, FishStix, and Backdraft!

Things You Were Too Afraid to Ask: Dean 'Deano' Calver

DeanoLeaving a sprawling trail of 1s and 0s behind him, Lead Programmer Dean 'Deano' Calver is the magnificent centerpiece of our latest staff interview. Dean was the Lead Programmer on the rather successful PlayStation 3 action game Heavenly Sword at fellow British studio Ninja Theory and is now the head of the programming team here at Splash Damage, fearlessly directing a small army of code-writing hands for our latest project.

To read all about Deano, his work, how he ended up at Splash Damage, man-eating tapirs, and much more, direct your ocular compilers to the full interview in his recently patched profile.

Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars Released 1 Year Ago

Happy birthday, ETQW!Just one short Earth year ago, a Stroyent-filled Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars arrived on store shelves everywhere and has been dropping Deployables on unsuspecting teammates ever since. It's fantastic for us to see so many people around the world still enjoying the game and that is in no small part thanks to our community - undoubtedly one of the most passionate and dedicated to be found anywhere in the Intertubes.

Better yet, the modders and map makers out there have a ton of new content in the works, and with great mods like Wheels of War and Tribal Wars, and a boatload of user-created maps on the horizon, there's plenty to keep ETQW fans everywhere excited. Happy birthday, ETQW!

Things You Were Too Afraid to Ask: Lloyd 'LloydM' Morris

Lloyd MorrisOur latest staff interview explores another inhabitant of our level design department, with Lloyd 'LloydM' Morris rolling around in our rather bright interrogation spotlight. One of the longest serving members of Splash Damage, Lloyd worked on both Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory and Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars, and has been working on the legendary CTF Tempest Utopia for most of his life.

To find out more about Lloyd, including his tips for breaking into the industry, his work on QUAKE Wars, and the shocking story behind his nickname, read the full interview while trying to avoid Lloyd's constant stream of flyer drones and the rather impressive circumference of his sombrero.

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