Bethesda Softworks - Dev Profile
Designer Alan Nanes is next up for the Bethsoft Blog's dev profile feature, Into the Vault:
What do you like best about working as a designer? What is the worse part?
The best part about being a designer is that your ideas drive the game world. Even though we do have a Lead Designer (Emil in the case of Fallout 3) to guide us, they are always very open to fresh ideas. I’ve seen quests change 100% from their original design based on a great idea someone suddenly had in a meeting. Being able to have your ideas translate to something you can play in the game is the greatest feeling for a designer.
The worst part about being a designer is the opposite. Sometimes an idea you’ve come up with can feel great, but when it’s examined by your peers or by the Lead, they make you realize it doesn’t belong in the game or it’s too complex. When writing dialog and quest materials, it’s surprisingly easy to forget you’re writing for a game, not for a book. You need to be clear and concise, yet detailed enough so that the flavor of the game world isn’t compromised. Maintaining this balance is the most challenging aspect of my job.