Splash DamageOctober 2008

October 2008

Rock, Paper, Shotgun Thinkosium Recap

Part of this week's London Games Festival was the Rock, Paper, Shotgun Thinkosium run by the gaming blog of the same name, which had several game developers field questions from gamers. Splash Damage's Senior Game Designer Ed 'BongoBoy' Stern was one of the chaps spreading concentrated balls of wisdom / knowledge among the folks in attendance and if you're one of the unlucky who weren't able to make it, you can now enjoy the event retroactively. RPS not only offers a text recap, but also some 12 minutes of really dark video footage, and courtesy of Dave Green, there are a few photos of the whole thing to be found on Flickr. Happy consuming!

Things You Were Too Afraid to Ask: Mattias 'dof' Engstrom

dofSenior Technical Designer Mattias 'dof' Engström pulls no punches in the latest of our series of staff interviews. Mattias comes to Splash Damage from Massive Entertainment, where he worked on the single player campaign for World in Conflict, 2007's rather well-received strategy title. Mattias and both of his hands are currently working on designery bits for our new project and we have it on good authority that he owns at least one impressive hat.

To find out how Mattias ended up in the industry and later at Splash Damage, his work on World in Conflict, what he does around these parts, and much more, browse over to his guaranteed to be flowchart-free staff profile.

Snap to Grid: Maridia Beta 2

Snap to GridHere's another installment of Snap to Grid, our regular look at up-and-coming user-created content for Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars. In this latest edition, ETQW Mapping's Managing Director and professional gorilla impersonator Terry 'Salteh' Seidler takes a look at beta 2 of Maridia, another effort by well-known brush-building machine Chris. Read on for a full walkthrough of the map, several screenshots and the obligatory download link. Connoisseurs of user-made maps should also keep an eye out for the Custom Map Nirvana events every Sunday featuring the latest and greatest maps made by the community.

Over to you, Salteh:

EnemyTerritory.tv Shoutcasting Team Fate vs Team hubris Tonight

EnemyTerritory·tv will be shoutcasting tonight's match between Team Fate and Team hubris, arguably two of the best teams in North America at the moment. The match is part of the Stronger Than All league, with the action is set to kick off at 10:30pm EST / 2:30 AM UK time. Just point your browsers to ET.TV's shoutcast stream when the time comes.

Splash Damage to be at London Games Festival, GameCity Next Week

London Games FestivalWe're set to invade two of Britain's biggest public gaming events next week, with members of Splash Damage heading to London Games Festival and GameCity up in Nottingham.

Studio owner Paul 'Locki' Wedgwood will be giving talks at both events, while Media Director Richard 'Fluffy_gIMp' Jolly, Audio Director Chris 'peaceful warrior' Sweetman, and Paul will also be giving advice to people looking to break into the industry as part of the BAFTA surgeries programme in London. And who could forget that Edward 'Bongoboy' Stern is putting in a glamorous panelist appearance at the Rock Paper Shotgun Thinkosium! To top things off, we'll also be popping by the Golden Joysticks 2008 awards ceremony on Friday.

Here's our schedule:

Things You Were Too Afraid to Ask: Miroslav 'Draska' Slowik

Capturing the imagination of the public in the latest entry of our series of staff interviews is landscaper-turned-level designer Miroslav 'Mirek' 'Draska' Slowik. Mirek was one of the level designers on Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars and is so far the only member of the Splash Damage team made entirely out of brushes.

To find out more about Mirek, how he ended up at Splash Damage, his work on Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars, and why working in the landscaping industry will get you wet, open Radiant and import Mirek's profile entity.

EnemyTerritory.tv & TGBF.tv to Cover 12v12 Invitational Carnage This Sunday

In addition to their excellent shoutcast, EnemyTerritory·tv will be teaming up with TGBF·tv this Sunday to provide live video coverage of the =GzR= Invitational Tourney, a colossal 12 on 12 fragfest. In this particular match, the old dirty men of GeezeR Gaming (GzR) will be facing off against The Art of War (TAW), with the action set to start at 9:30pm Eastern Time. With this being 12 on 12 and campaign mode, the rules and restrictions that the community is used to seeing in the 6v6 competitive leagues will not be in effect, so prepare for a unique, no-holds barred event as the GDF and Stroggies battle for territory throughout an entire campaign.

You can tune into EnemyTerritory.tv's live shoutcast stream this Sunday at 9:30 PM EST and catch the video feed over at TGBF.tv.

Currently Hurling Controllers / Mice At... Bad Company Edition

Tapir 'nadeIn a somewhat odd development, Battlefield: Bad Company appears to be making the rounds here at the office some four months after its initial release. Initially, the single player demo with its, shall we say, lengthy mission design seemed to put most people off, but now that a few of us have actually played through the game and dipped our collective toes and trigger fingers in the game's multiplayer, the Bad Company virus seems to be spreading from one employee to the next. Thanks to the simplicity of Xbox Live, we often hop into each other's multiplayer games in the evening and proceed to grief each other in the most hilarious and obnoxious ways possible. It's therapy of sorts.

Anyway, if you ignore the numerous Bad Company posts below, it almost sounds like we're playing the latest games. We've also got a few new faces in this update, with Richard 'Rahdo' Ham and Mattias 'dof' Engström making their blog debut.

Golden Joysticks 2008 - Last Chance to Vote!

The winners of the Golden Joysticks 2008 are set to be announced on Friday of next week, so there's only a few days left to vote for Splash Damage and Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars! We're up for an amazing six of the statuettes and every 10,000th voter gets a cool prize ranging from games and magazine subscriptions to consoles and even HDTVs! To vote, simply head over to this page and pick your winners. Splash Damage and ETQW are up for the following:

  • Nuts All Nighter - Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars
  • PC Game of the Year - Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars
  • PlayStation Game of the Year - Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars
  • UK Developer of the Year - Splash Damage
  • Ultimate Game of the Year - Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars
  • Xbox Game of the Year - Enemy Territory: QUAKE Wars

Just remember that it's all for the children tapirs.

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.