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Thread: Interplay founder looks back on the past 20 years

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    Interplay founder looks back on the past 20 years

    One of Interplay's 5 founders, Bill Heineman, wrote a little spot in his LiveJournal about the current falling of Interplay and the memories he has of the place. Some bits:
    The titles kept coming. Borrowed Time, Tass Times in Tonetown and then our breakthrough title, The Tales of the Unknown: The Bard's Tale. In the office with 12 people, it was a joy to come into the office, have fun making games you want to play and everyone knew each other on a first name basis.

    This was paradise.

    Interplay grew, adding more people, starting more projects yet it kept the small developer feel throughout. Politics were almost non-existant. The projects were ones you would almost kill to get to work on like Bard's Tale II, Wasteland, and Bard's Tale III.

    (...)

    Is the company dead? As a corporation, it's very much alive. But without millions of dollars sunk into the firm just to pay off debt that's due today and millions more to fund operations until a new management team could be found and turn the place around, it's not likely that it will recover.

    So, even though I may be premature in saying this, Farewell Interplay. You were the source of many happy memories for me and thousands of current and former employees. May the games that were created there live on forever in the hearts and minds of gamers everywhere. Bard's Tale, Descent, Battlechess and Wasteland were classics that the games of today still try to duplicate their fun factor, but may never do.
    Link: Bill Heineman on Interplay in his LiveJournal

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    I should set a custom title It Wandered In From the Wastes

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    Interplay grew, adding more people, starting more projects yet it kept the small developer feel throughout
    They should have stayed small, who needs sports divisions and movie quality graphics? I guess it's all ambition's fault. That little 12 people office was more than enough to make good games (for gamers).
    Francisco

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    I should set a custom title It Wandered In From the Wastes

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    I would guess the reason why they diddn't stay small was to keep up with competition. They would have gone out of buisness even earlyer if they had kept to a staff of 12 or whatever.

    Electronic Arts (whether you like them or not) are agood example of a game company succesfully keeping up with advances in the industry, and they will not go bankrupt in the forseeable future down to carefull use of funds on games they know will sell.
    An example of funds not being spent carefully being FBOS, from the lovely interplay

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    I should set a custom title First time out of the vault

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    deleted.

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    He mentioned Wasteland. I don't think he was working there in the 90s.

    The death of interplay after so many years is sad. Neuromancer. What a great game in the 80s. Sniff....
    "Opinions are like assh@les - everyone's got 'em and they all stink" old saying attributed to the Chosen One.

    I know what you are thinking, pervert

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    I should set a custom title Still Mildly Glowing

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    So this is it. What are we gona do now :.The greatest team of all time is gone and we wont see any cool RPG just crap like the so caled Sacred shit there event isnt a way to shose your fate not to mension the crapy NPC sistem.
    Stupid optimisim that no one wants to hear.

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    I should set a custom title Water Chip? Been There, Done That

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    Re: Interplay founder looks back on the past 20 years

    Quote Originally Posted by Kharn
    The projects were ones you would almost kill to get to work on like Bard's Tale II, Wasteland, and Bard's Tale III.
    Baldur's Gate, Baldur's Gate II... Jefferson.
    Descent, Descent II, Descent III.
    Icewind Dale, IceWind Dale II.
    Fallout, Fallout 2... Van Bueren.
    FreeSpace, FreeSpace II.

    Hrm... I'm sensing a pattern. That's some good titles though (depending on your point of view, of course).
    Until I hear "Isometric view", "SPECIAL system", "non-linearity", "turn-based combat" and "paths for diplomat, thief and combat characters" then I'm dubious about Fallout 3 by Bethesda.
    In your opinion, what are the key ingredients that every RPG should have?
    - Choice and Consequence ~ Gareth Davies
    Fan Made Fallout | Terra Arcanum | Duck and Cover

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    I should set a custom title Still Mildly Glowing
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    To all Hells of eternal damnation!!!

    Tis making me so sad and angry, I want to jump into someone's face.

    Bard's Tale on me good old Commodore 64,
    my beloved StoneAgeToaster.

    Still when some friends coming around, telling about a RolePlayingGame,
    it happens that a discussion about the greatest RPG starts,
    and no title will stand against Bard's Tale and Wasteland.
    All this new age 3D stuff and crap, give me a Commodere 64,
    a Floppy 1541, my good old datasette, cables and here we go!


    I even still remember, my first PC was around the time,
    short before Fallout 1 came out. I read the first preview
    article... It was End-Time, It was Turn-Based, IT SHOULD BE MINE!
    Played it till my eyes were bleeding, and still doing it,
    like not less other of you guys too, me thinks.

    Baldur's Gate, so it is depending on the point of view,
    like DarkUnderlord said, it resurrected the RPG-Genre
    from it's undead existence, a game, which since a long
    time there, made it to capture me, and let me play longer
    into the night, then I should, and got me very
    tired to work next days.

    Descent series, arf, never liked it, that were not my games,
    but it was great to look over a friends shoulder
    when playing it, so I did not like it, it was anyhow a good game.


    So, there is no way back anymore, like the name of a song:
    "The Memory Will Remain"

    Enough sentimentality!


    edit: Some grammar correction 8)
    Lester More, shot by a .44. No Les, No more.

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    On an island in the sun This ghoul has seen it all
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    Amen.

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    The Punchinator Still Mildly Glowing
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    anyone want to mark the end by making an Interplay Rememberance Video? a humourous one that is :p

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    Let's not forget Interplay also published the Lost Vikings, Black Thorne and probably a few other great early Blizzard games. A good reminder that greatest of games are often based on a very simple concept.

    Then there's Kingpin... the game which inspired me to become the homicidal maniac I am now.

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    I should set a custom title Still Mildly Glowing

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    The funiest fing is that i never heard of tose wastland or bard tales games. what are they about :
    Stupid optimisim that no one wants to hear.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Egis
    The funiest fing is that i never heard of tose wastland or bard tales games. what are they about :
    They're really old RPGs. Wasteland is sort of a spiritual ancestor to Fallout.

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    I should set a custom title Lived Through the Heat Death

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    Titus shares were suspended from the Paris stock exchange
    http://fr.finance.yahoo.com/q?s=TITP.LN&d=2b

    I sent a translation for Kharn and Odin and a few more guys.

    It states an oficiall announcement from Titus is coming soon.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ratty
    Let's not forget Interplay also published the Lost Vikings...
    Yeah, the lost vikings is one game worth remembering....
    "Change within yourself what you want to see changed in the world."
    - Mahatma Gandhi

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    Well must say for me it wasn't so much Interplay, since I always prefered Microprose, SSI or Lucasfilm over it. Apart from Conquest of the New World almost all Iplay titles I liked were by Black Isle (BG and FO) so I'll miss them more than Iply.
    Basically it's all the same though, these were the old companies which had been there from day one; Microprose, Interplay, SSI, Sierra, Lucasfilm, Cinemaware etc, it simply was a great time to play games. Lot of original ideas could keep one playing for hours, days even weeks and months. Nor did we care shit for graphics back then, hell the Amiga totally pawned PC and other systems with it's 32 colours, but lastly good original gameplay always ruled over graphics. That probably changed with Wing Commander series (although the first titles were good in both respects).
    In any case it's just sad to see all of these great companies die one after another, fuck capitalism.

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    They're really old RPGs. Wasteland is sort of a spiritual ancestor to Fallout.
    Wasteland was more than a "spiritual ancestor" to Fallout.

    The original project that Interplay started was going to be Wasteland 2, only at the last minute EA refused to let Fargo use the Wasteland title.

    Interplay then renamed it Fallout: A GURPS Post-Nuclear Adventure, and were going to use the Steve Jackson RPG system (thanks mostly to Tim Cain's love for the GURPS game system and Fargo's desire for a known product).

    After a very rocky relationship between the development team and Steve Jackson Games, Interplay decided to drop both Steve Jackson and GURPS from the title.

    The project finally became known as Fallout.

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    I should set a custom title Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eragon2004
    Interplay then renamed it GURPS, and were going to use the Steve Jackson RPG system (thanks mostly to Tim Cain's love for the GURPS game system and Fargo's desire for a known product).
    They didn't name it GURPS, it was going to be "Fallout: A Post Apocalyptic GURPS Role Playing Game" (or something similar) until Steve Jackson denied them use of the system. They then dropped the "GURPS" part of the subtitle, and created their own system, the SPECIAL system we all know and love.
    I believe there's an original pic with the GURPS part included somewhere aropund here.

    Try this or this.
    Been away awhile, so I've no clue what's going on.

    If this has been here for more than a few weeks, I'm probably away again.

  19. #19
    I've made over 40 posts First time out of the vault

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    Steve Jackson denied them use of the system.
    Steve Jackson denied them use of the GURPS system after Interplay decided to boot him off the project.

    That's when Cain came up with the SPECIAL system as a replacement for GURPS.

  20. #20
    I should set a custom title Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eragon2004
    Steve Jackson denied them use of the GURPS system after Interplay decided to boot him off the project.
    Ah, I didn't know that, but it was still named Fallout rather than GURPS. That wouldn't have made much sense would it?
    Been away awhile, so I've no clue what's going on.

    If this has been here for more than a few weeks, I'm probably away again.

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