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RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Big Huge Games - Ken Rolston Joins to Make an RPG

Default Big Huge Games - Ken Rolston Joins to Make an RPG

February 20th, 2007, 23:40
This one is a bit of a surprise…Big Huge Games - makers of strategy favourites Rise of Nations and Rise of Legends has announced Ken Rolston (Lead Designer on Bethsoft's Morrowind and Oblivion) has joined them for a new, unnamed RPG project:
Timonium, Maryland (February 13th, 2007) Ken Rolston, the Lead Designer of smash hits Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind™ and Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion™ has joined Big Huge Games to create a to-be-announced role-playing game (RPG). Rolston is a 25-year industry veteran, whose extensive game credits also include pen-and-paper RPGs such as Paranoia and RuneQuest.

“Ken’s addition marks a bold new direction for Big Huge Games,” said BHG President Tim Train. “We remain committed to creating real-time strategy games such as past hits Rise of Nations and Rise of Legends. At the same time, we’ve explored developing a role-playing game for several years now. Ken is a fantastic fit for us on every level, and gives us the leadership we need to be confident of success in our new venture.”

“A chance to work on a Big Huge Game with Big Huge Games? Who could resist?” said Rolston. “I had planned to retire and rest on my laurels after Oblivion, but Tim and his army of visionary charmers came along with a strikingly original and cunning concept for a console RPG…so now I’m back in the harness and chomping at the bit!”
You can grab Ken's bio from the BHG site here.
More information.
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February 20th, 2007, 23:40
I think they will make a big huge game. Or should I say "Oblivion Clone" ?
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February 20th, 2007, 23:53
"…concept for a console RPG…"
Oh, yippee.

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February 20th, 2007, 23:58
Originally Posted by Ken
“I had planned to retire and rest on my laurels after Oblivion, but Tim and his army of visionary charmers came along with a strikingly original and cunning concept for a console RPG…so now I’m back in the harness and chomping at the bit!”
Am I the only one that thinks that doesn't sound right somehow?
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February 21st, 2007, 00:14
I think Rise of… did pretty well on the PC, so I imagine this is a fair chance it won't be console exclusive…what "console RPG" means in terms of gameplay might be another thing altogether.

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February 21st, 2007, 00:20
Yep, it lost me the moment I saw 'console rpg'!! I'll keep an open mind, at least for now, but I won't be putting it on my list!!

If God said it, then that settles it!!

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February 21st, 2007, 00:35
We've recently seen a lot of RTS developers going into the RPG genre. Reality Pump, Firefly and now Big Huge Games.
But yes, the genres aren't ideologically that far apart from each other either.
Last edited by Asbjoern; February 21st, 2007 at 15:20. Reason: added "either"
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February 21st, 2007, 00:39
Please bear in my mind that there might be reasons, economical or otherwise, that some people rather would pay on a console (PS3, Xbox 360, Nintendo DS and other
consoles instead of the PC).

Many people do not have the finances to keep upgrading their PCs once every 1½ year or so in order to be able to play PC games.

As for myself, I'm pondering getting the Nintendo DS Lite and the new Slim Line PS2 as well. (while I'll be looking to playing games like Touch Detective on Nintendo DS Lite…)
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February 21st, 2007, 01:08
My rig is 4+ years old and the last upgrade (other than a wireless networking card) was a GF3 card when Morrowind was released.

I don't have a problem with their decision to make a console game, nor some folks being interested. My experience is that console ports (assuming they ported it to PC) don't appeal to me because they are generally action-oriented and the gameplay is hampered by the limitations of controller input.

My disappointment stemmed not from the game being a console release, but from what effect that would have on the game itself. I'm not really a console basher.

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February 21st, 2007, 02:25
Originally Posted by Kharn View Post
Am I the only one that thinks that doesn't sound right somehow?
I always thought that his "retirement statement" always sounded sort of fishy, more like he was forced out especially considering some of his comments regarding Oblivion development. Those comments gave me my first inkling that Oblivion might not be such a great RPG after all.

Beyond that, I had some hopes for the new RPG when I saw Rolston had been hired(I kind of liked Morrowind, but don't care for his no betrayal "rule"), but like others lost interest as soon as I saw console. The only console I've even been considering is a Wii, but it hasn't had enough good games come out for it yet, not enough old console games online yet, and they're in scarce supply in the area. The scarce supply is a good sign though, as every time I go to a game store I hear people asking if any more Wii's have come in yet. All of that said, I want platformers, arcade conversion, jRPGs, and other console type games for my console and not what should've been a PC game shoehorned into a console, like this one will likely be and what all XBOX360 games are, and what looks like a large percentage of PS3 games will be.
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February 21st, 2007, 02:41
Given BHG's involvement with Mi¢rosoft, there's a fair chance the game'll appear on the X360 . . . and on the PC two years afterwards.
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February 21st, 2007, 06:45
cutter:
In the near term, the Wii is likely to be the worst option for traditional console games. Almost every 3rd party title to date has suffered control problems. And since it's underpowered, it'll miss out on a lot of multiplatform games. If you buy a Wii this year, buy it for Nintendo's games, the VC library, and the unique titles which the controller will make possible.

In the long term, of course, it'll depend on who sells the most hardware, and that's wide open. But looking promising for the Wii, as you say.

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February 21st, 2007, 10:24
Originally Posted by cutterjohn View Post
I always thought that his "retirement statement" always sounded sort of fishy, more like he was forced out especially considering some of his comments regarding Oblivion development. Those comments gave me my first inkling that Oblivion might not be such a great RPG after all.
Yeah, I thought so myself, when I saw this article. Ken being a tangible evidence of bethesda's mainstreaming.

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February 21st, 2007, 15:15
Originally Posted by Asbjoern View Post
We've recently seen a lot of RTS developers going into the RPG genre. Reality Pump, Firefly and now Big Huge Games.
But yes, the genres aren't ideologically that far apart from each other.
I think that the RTS space is becoming very crowded with some really good stuff, and many are looking to differentiate themselves. Hopefully this is a good thing for us.

Originally Posted by aries100 View Post
As for myself, I'm pondering getting the Nintendo DS Lite and the new Slim Line PS2 as well. (while I'll be looking to playing games like Touch Detective on Nintendo DS Lite…)
I don't consider the DS / PSP to be competitive with the PC, but complementary with whatever 'stationary' system one chooses.

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February 21st, 2007, 15:35
Originally Posted by txa1265 View Post
I think that the RTS space is becoming very crowded with some really good stuff, and many are looking to differentiate themselves. Hopefully this is a good thing for us.
Yes, I've been thinking so myself too recently. There's a lot of RTS franchises on the market. It's almost grotesque and perhaps the market is saturated. Both Reality Pump and Big Huge Games have expressed a desire to make a RPG for some time and perhaps now they embrace the opportunity because of necessity.
I've been looking into Anno 1701 and Europa Universalis III and they look like interesting games, I might try at some point.
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February 21st, 2007, 16:08
Originally Posted by Asbjoern View Post
I've been looking into Anno 1701 and Europa Universalis III and they look like interesting games, I might try at some point.
I know the Anno series is big in Europe but not the US. I really liked the game.

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February 21st, 2007, 16:48
Originally Posted by txa1265 View Post
I know the Anno series is big in Europe but not the US. I really liked the game.
Approved by the Gamerdad authority. 10+. I'm buying it. I really like that phrase "Approved by the Gamerdad authority". Brilliant.

I like the fact that this game isn't that heavily combat-based. I'm more a builder and I loved Stronghold because of this.

I think I will buy it, when the price has dropped a bit.

But yes. This game is perhaps for the gamer(grand)dad himself: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wE0ifcCOsgU

It's a nice article you've made and it's a good point of view you have. Not being overly protective towards children but being able to give a realistic and mature view on what to avoid. And not the Christian absurdity.
The article is also a much better guidance instead of just a rating or symbollic danger figure on the package.

Regards Asbjørn
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February 21st, 2007, 18:54
Originally Posted by txa1265 View Post
I know the Anno series is big in Europe but not the US. I really liked the game.
Hmmm, I missed that review. I just looked at the screenshots and just love them. It's like candy…shoot, I'm at a loss for words

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