Remember Trent Oster? He's probably best known as the lead designer on Neverwinter Nights (we covered his comments back on the old NWN forums extensively here on GameBanshee), but he's since left BioWare to form a company called IdeaSpark Labs that's hard at work on a PC game distribution portal called Beamdog. Anyway, since he's working with Interplay to bring MDK2 to the Wii and a high definition port to the PC, I thought I'd point out this new interview with him on Big Download.
First, you left BioWare last year after a long time working for the developer. Why did you decide to leave such a successful game developer? My guess is that we'll see more collaborations between Interplay and IdeaSpark, which hopefully means that we'll eventually gain access to high definition versions of some older RPGs, too.
This is actually the second time I have left Bioware. I was one of six original co-founders of BioWare (a long time ago) and left to lead my own studio (I rejoined a year later, with Shattered Steel and we finished the title at Bioware). This time around it was a story of opportunity. As a part of a Bioware/EA in a recession there wasn't a lot of opportunity for new ventures within the company. There are a lot of great people at Bioware and I enjoyed working with them, but ultimately I had to leave to pursue something as big as Beamdog.
Let's talk about MDK2 HD. First what was your involvement in the making of the original MDK2 for BioWare?
I did about a year of early technical and prototype art on the project and later, a lot of swearing when they pulled half my art team from Neverwinter Nights to help finish it. My business partner, Cam was the lead programmer and producer, essentially the heart of the project, so a lot of our work rests on his shoulders.