“Well our favorite dev to bash has now gone away. Chris Avellone has resigned his position at Black Isle Studios and is setting off to greener pastures. Mister Chris Avellone, you have provided us with countless hours of fun and we can only hope you don’t hate us completely. Best of luck to you and have a nice life.”
Reading on Interplay’s forums that it appears Dave Maldonado and Chris Parker left too.
MCA was the lead on Van Buren (aka Fallout 3) So where does this leave the project?
Well looking at business news, Interplay has actually been doing pretty well and Titus managed to remove almost all of their combined debt. So the axe pointed towards their necks has been removed. In doing so, Titus had an almost complete management change. At this point, Titus and Interplay are very cash poor and the new management was looking for ways to raise cash to continue game development and yesterdays shareholders meeting they stated that the only 3 games in development were Fallout: Brother Hood of Steel, Baldur’s Gate Dark Alliance II and Lionheart. Galleon has been completed for sometime and waiting for a release date. When pressed the management said no other games were in development. So taking Avellone’s quiting and what was stated yesterday, one can assume that Van Buren (aka Fallout 3) wasn’t in development either or has been placed on hold/cancelled along with Jefferson. Also it appears that if Titus can’t fine a buyer for Interplay, they are willing to sell more IP and games currently in development.
There’s a few people left from the Fallout 2 days: Tom French, Dan Spitzley, Scott Everts, Chris Jones, John Deily, and Jason Suinn.
However, I don’t think I can emphasize how important Urquhart and Avellone were in keeping that studio together through thick and thin. Chris had been concepting for Fallout 3 for a good three years… it was pretty much his baby.
I wouldn’t be suprised if you see most of the other veterans bail in the near future.
There’s still a few people from the old days, like Tom French and Dan Spitzley, but not many. Feargus and Chris Avellone were very key people – the prospects for the company really couldn’t get any worse (until they inevitably close the doors).