Pillars of Eternity - Interview @ Stevivor
Stevivor had the chance to interview Feargus Urquhart about Pillars of Eternity, and talk about the Paradox Interactive distribution deal.
Steve Wright, Stevivor: First, before we get into what’s probably a set of obvious questions, let’s focus on Pillars of Eternity first. Can you give me a bit of a backstory on how the game came to be? Influences, design strategies, that sort of thing?
Urquhart: A lot of us worked at Black Isle, you know; that's where the five owners of Obsidian came from. We were the external producers on a lot of BioWare projects, which were Neverwinter Nights for 95% of its development, plus Baldur's Gate and Baldur's Gate II. I did work on Shattered Steel, which was one of BioWare's first products.
Internally, we did Icewind Dale and its expansion packs, which were Infinity Engine games, and between Baldur's Gate… between the numbers of all these games, we're talking 10 to 15, maybe even 20 million units were sold between all of those. People enjoyed those games, and people remember them. To this day, people still walk up to me and tell me how much they enjoyed those games. And they just stopped being made.
We moved over to Obsidian, and indies really needed to start focusing on consoles; BioWare started focusing on consoles, and these games – not because people didn't want them – just stopped being made. And so that kind of went out of our heads for the next six or seven years. Then, John from GameBanshee, which is an RPG journalism, hobbyist kind of site, talked to me at E3, probably four years ago and asked why I wasn't making those games.
I really didn't have a good answer, other than I couldn't get them funded. We thought they'd be cool, I'd love to make them, and I'd still want to play them, though. Then the PC started to gain more Steam…
And then, Kickstarter blew up in 2012 with Double Fine and In Exile and the guys who made Shadowrun Returns, and us, with Pillars of Eternity. It was a chance for us to go back and make something that we loved, and we certainly can make that type of game. A modern version of it, that's something that we want to play. Luckily, people were totally in to it.
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