Updated Fri, Apr 09, 2010 by Sardu
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Vast quantities of pine pollen weren't the only thing to descend on Raleigh, NC this week, as the city also played host to the second annual Triangle Game Conference. Reuben "Sardu" Waters was on hand for the two day event to catch the buzz on this growing hotspot for regional game developers and platform pugilists. While there he caught up with many of the MMOG masterminds behind Fallen Earth to get the scoop on Lee Hammock's new position with Gargantuan and what wastelanders can look forward to over the coming months. All this and much more today in Loading... Wasteland Triangulation.
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Over the past five or so years since I made my triumphant trek back to the east coast, I've had the opportunity to witness the Raleigh, NC area blossom into a new hub for game development. Boasting brand-name bigwigs such as Epic Games, Red Storm Entertainment and more recently Insomniac Games, the area also continues to attract an impressive number of independent developers and platform specialists, each working towards bringing gaming into the next generation.
Nowhere was this growth more apparent than during the second annual Triangle Game Conference, which provided an excellent overview of why Raleigh and the surrounding area is quickly becoming the next major center for gaming in the U.S. In sharp contrast to last month's GDC and PAX East, the Triangle show was certainly a more intimate affair, but it also provided an excellent opportunity to connect with some of the movers and shakers from the area.
Prominently featured among them was the post-apocalyptic MMOG powerhouse Fallen Earth. Over the course of the two day event I had the chance to attend an excellent discussion on Narrative vs. Gameplay presented by content team lead for Fallen Earth, Marie Croall, and otherwise express my long standing child-like fascination with prairie chickens to associate project manager Dave Haydysch who assured me that players will be seeing more of the awesomely awkward beasts in coming months.
However, I was also interested in learning more about Lee Hammock's departure from the team which was officially announced at the start of this week. To bring you up to speed in case you missed the news, Lee will be starting in a new position as Story Designer for Gargantuan, which many of the people from Fallen Earth that I spoke with explained is somewhat of a golden opportunity for the now beardless Lee. Not only has he previously penned tales for Marvel, but he's also a massive fan of comics in general so getting the chance to contribute to upcoming Marvel Universe is indeed a worthy reason to switch teams mid-season.
Fallen Earth fans need not fret though, as Lee's legacy will live on well into the wasteland's future. While much of the game's lore has been directly shaped by his particular narrative styling, the team has a bevy of game updates and future sectors mapped out, such as the amazing iPhone app we saw in action at PAX East and the upcoming Blood Sports instanced PvP maps (which I was assured has nothing to do with the Jean-Claude Van Damme movie in case you were wondering).
"We appreciate the contributions that Lee has made to the project," said Colin Dwan, project manager for Fallen Earth. "We have laid a solid foundation which includes experienced leadership and a project plan with attainable milestones. Fallen Earth fans will be seeing an impressive array of new content and features in the months ahead."
The team is currently preparing a new state of the game address which will be unleashed fairly soon, and in the meantime Fallen Earth will also be joining us for a special episode of Ten Ton Hammer Live! this Saturday at 7pm EST, so be sure to mark your calendars folks!
Are there other aspects of the Triangle Game Conference you'd like to hear more about? Be sure to let me know in the Loading... forums!
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