DICE 2009: Ask Chris Taylor, Todd Howard, Jun Takeuchi, Bruce Shelley, And More!


Posted February 17, 2009 - By r_pad

By the time you read this, Leahy and I will be on the way to Vegas for the annual DICE Summit. Yesterday, a lot of you posted some excellent questions for our first batch of interview subjects (keep 'em coming if you have more!). Now is your chance to ask additional gaming-industry luminaries what's on your mind. This time around, I'm taking questions for Chris Taylor, Pete Wanat, Jun Takeuchi, Bruce Shelley, Marc Rein, and Todd Howard.

Just in case you need a refresher on who these excellent people are, here are some brief descriptions. Remember, if your question is used, your username will be mentioned and you'll get mad props from other readers for asking such a poignant question. I'm counting on you to come up with some great stuff so that I can show these gaming giants how awesome TheFeed's readers are!

Chris Taylor
Who is he: CEO and creative director of Gas Powered Games
What he's done: Hardball II, Triple Play 96, Total Annihilation, Dungeon Siege, Supreme Commander, Space Siege
Why he's awesome: From baseball games to real-time strategy, Chris has had a versatile and successful career making games. He's also one of the funniest people I've ever met on the development side. As Japanese publishers reach out to western developers to round out their portfolios, Taylor's Gas Powered Games is on the forefront of bridging the East and West with a successful partnership with Sega and a new opportunity with SquareEnix.

Pete Wanat
Who is he: Executive producer at Universal Pictures Digital Platforms Group
What he's done: The Thing, The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape From Butcher Bay, Scarface: The World is Yours, Wanted: Weapons of Fate
Why he's awesome: Wanat has a well-deserved reputation as one of the few guys that understands what it takes to make an excellent game based on a movie license. Some gaming journalists refer to him as "The Miracle Worker" which would make games blind and deaf (it wasn't my analogy). Wanat's recent work has been very impressive. That is hard for me to admit since he's a big Red Sox fan. He also worked on Frank Thomas Big Hurt Baseball, which I spent way too much time playing on the Sega Saturn.

Jun Takeuchi
Who is he: Game director and producer at Capcom Entertainment
What he's done: Resident Evil, Onimusha, Lost Planet
Why he's awesome: Takeuchi-san has been working his way up Capcom since 1991. A programmer on the original Resident Evil, the latest game in the series (Resident Evil 5) is in Takeuchi's capable hands. In between those games, he served as director for Onimusha and Lost Planet. He's currently serving as the producer for Lost Planet 2.

Bruce Shelley
Who is he
: Co-founder of Ensemble Studios (recently shut down by Microsoft)
What he's done: Railroad Tycoon, Civilization, Age of Empires
Why he's awesome: From creating board games to PC games, Shelley has been entertaining millions of people for decades. Serving as assistant designer to the legendary Sid Meier for Railroad Tycoon and Civilization, Shelley has become a legend in his own right with the Age of Empire series. His most recent games were published by Microsoft Games Studios, which (sadly) decided to shut down Ensemble. I still don't get it.

Mark Rein
Who is he: Co-founder and vice president of Epic Games
What he's done: Unreal, Unreal Engine, Gears of War
Why he's awesome: Things you can always count on: the sun rising, death, taxes, and Mark Rein saying something bold and outlandish. You barely have to interview him -- just stick a microphone in his face and nine times out of ten Rein will say something that begs attention. I vow to find out if he prefers the moniker "Purple" or "Chocolate". The latter is more modern, but the former will never go out of style.

Todd Howard
Who is he: Game director and producer at Bethesda
What he's done: The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, Fallout 3
Why he's awesome: Do you need a reason other than the outstanding Fallout 3? Okay, go ahead and look at Howard's work on The Elder Scrolls series. The man has been crafting some amazingly deep and captivating games for years! While his previous titles have been lauded, he made his biggest splash yet in 2008 with the award-winning Fallout 3.

Have any questions for some or all of these excellent people? Leave your queries in the comment section!

DICE 2009: Ask Chris Taylor, Todd Howard, Jun Takeuchi, Bruce Shelley, And More!


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