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Our (personal) interview with GSC :D

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  16:55:12  29 December 2004
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Amoki
back with a vengeance
(V.I.P.)

 

 
On forum: 07/31/2003
 

Message edited by:
Amoki
12/30/2004 1:34:26
Messages: 1729
Our (personal) interview with GSC

30/12/2004 - remember that date, folks, 'cause the literary contest community has its own interview with one of the devs! O-L had them, Gamespot had them, lots of other websites had them, and now it's our share of the chocolate cookie! And here is the transcript of the interview. Note, however, these QAs are only for the literary contest community. Don't expect MP goodies or Gameplay hints. At least, no that much goodies

This interview is done on the pretense that 1) This interview is posted only at the official GSC forum 2) Questions that are too sensitive wil be pulled off i.e. censored.


prelude
Q:1) Ukraine just finished its election, with Yushenko on the winning edge. But its still a mess. How does majority of the GSC's staff reacts ATM?

A: The election results are not final yet. The final ones will be announced in some days. But they will not have any effect on the game and its development.


Overview
Q: 1) First of all - any hint on where the contest stands now? Any hints on when it will end?
A: The contest now on its final stage. We are receiving last letters from the authors and will calculate the results very soon.

Q: 2)So if we want to sent our author's voting emails, we have to do it now? Can you at least give us a timeframe?
A: I can say that authors have about a month for that. As a side note: It was announced earlier in the site news that authors are allowed (and required) to send the vote letter where should be the name of the author, his story name and 3 best stories on this contest (his point of view) except his own ones. The letter should be sent from the same e-mail as this author's story.

Q: 3) What are the devs' personal opinions of the vote-cheaters on the contest?
A: We are sorry that they have appeared on the contest and spoiled the contest principles. But we have to make this final author's voting because we understand that there are many other and maybe better stories than the ones in the top ten. We want to make the contest a fair one.

Q: 4) Generally, which side of the contest is more active- Russian or English?
A: Both sides are quite active we can't tell which one is the most active.


winning the contest
Q:1) How would the winners be informed?
We will announce the winners by e-mail and in the news on the official site

Q: 2) Any hope to get the devs reading the contest entries?
A: we've read many of them

Q: 3) This is going to be a tough question, so you may choose to skip. Can you tell us how the contest will be judged? (You can choose to speeak of it generally, speciically, or ask to ignore it.)
A: We'll take the top storieas from the author's voting and top stories from the official voting. Than we'll compare them. We've invented the special formula to count that properly. I can only tell that authors voting will have the advantage over the official one.


Q: 4) We know that lots of staff in GSC do have the capacity to judge . So can we expect them to read the The Top Ten when the contest ends and give a fair judgement?
A: Yes thats quite possible

Q: 5) From the impression you have given me, this contest is not merely statistical-based (meaning you only consider numbers and figures), but also taking into account, realisticly, the quality of the stories involved. Is that so? Can the fans be expectant of a result that will ultimately satisfy every participant?
A: Yes, the quality of the stories is taking into account. We hope that our actions (I mean interfearence into the voting system) will help to satisfy every participant


Q: 6) when the devs are choosing the winners of the literary contest, What are you looking for? Are you more concerned on a good plot, or a realistic Zone setting, or an integration of both?
A: We will not choose the winner. Authors and voters will do that.
Q: But you just said that GSC will interfere with the voting system?
A: We've interfered only the system, not the votings


Q: 6) If we are not satisfied with the end result of the contest and decide to raise a ruckus, can you tell us any *legal* way of doing so?
A: If you take any result there will always be hundreds of dissatisfied. Every author thinks that his story is the best, so if he doesn't win the contest he will be dissatisfied.
Q: but what happens if a huge majority thinks that one particular story doesn't deserves to win? You p.o.v (point of view) makes sense, but that only applies to the scenario whereby individual participants are dissatisfied. What I am interested to know, is a case when we have a huge majority (perhaps 50% of participants) thinks that one of the winners doesn't deserve to win because his story sucks AND he cheated..
A: Its impossible because authors will not mark that story in their emails.
Amoki : LOL, make sense

Q: 7) Speaking of cheat... during last April, GSC had mentioned about an anti-cheat system. Is that referring to a special tool/programme in the server?
A: Yeah, we've changed something but this will not solve the problem completely.


setting
Q: 1)There are cases in the contest that they got the nature of The Zone wrong. Generally, 2 types, but we will tackle geo-political data fault (geo= geopgraphy, political = governemnt controlling the Zone). While you did mention a few months ago that whether a Communist Ukraine or a Democratic Republic of Ukraine is no longer an issue in the contest, these cases went a bit further. We do have cases of US Army controlling The Zone and even the British! Obviously these authors had not looked carefully at their map, or they did not do their research. Will you comment on this?
A: It doesn't matter much. If the story is good and the authors voted fot this such story could be the winner. Authors don't know everything about the game and thats ok. [I asked this question specifically for Franz Inc]

posting
Q:1) We know that the contest is done with, but there a couple more stories that are unposted. Can you get them posted 1 month before the contest ends?
A: They most likely will be posted.
Q: 2) Can any story that is outside the boundaries of the contest be included in the CD?
A: We will keep on posting the stories after the contest is completely over. Don't know now if they will be placed on the disc.


books
Q: 1)Onto the publishing of books: GSC is co-operating with a Russian publishing house called "EKSMO" to release some of the contest stories in hardcover and also some real novels based in the Zone. Any plans of something like this happening for the Western fans? The novels themselves could of course be translated but what about the literary stories by Western fans? It would surely be nicer to have them used instead of translations by the Russian fans. [headhunter's q]
A: Everything depends on our publisher, THQ.


Misc.
Q: 1)Any response to both the character creation event and the fanfic music creation? When will they end.
A: The character creation will be held for a month or so, fanmusic will be held until I'm dead

Q: 2) How is the author's voting going so far
A: active in the beginning. Now is not active

Q: 3) The name S.T.A.L,K.E.R is a enigma itself. Unlike stupid names like "Half-life" which its title do not mean anything to its game's content, it was revealed that STALKER is related to the game. A few fansites and board are trying to decrypt it. OF course you can't tell us what it means, but any hint please?
A: You will find that only in the game

Q: 4) Everyone is craving for STALKER. It is heard that GSC had an up-and-running MP version in the Kiev Intel-Samsung show. From your personal experience as both FPS fan and a STALKER fan, can you tell us how the MP experience in STALKER will be like? Is it a cross between CS and Battlefield Vietnam, or it is something more mind-blowing?
A: Its mind-blowing virtual reality: CS (plus) Battlefield (plus) Chernobyl atmosphere

Q: 5) Any updates on the author's and fan's characters that we sent in? If not, when will we know?
A: Just keep on sending it to me. we will not name the authors which characters will be included in the game. We need 450 interesting characters and its too much time to name all




Q: Any last words for the contestants?
A: Be patient, you've done a great work and only what we are asking of you is little more time and your vote letters. And remember all the stories will be placed on the disc with the game.

Q: if there are other questions that need to be answered prior to the end of the contest, will you care for another interview?
A: we'll see



That's the end of it. I personally thank [GSC]Atem for this interview that lasted nearly 4 hours (he had to juggle between work and response ) and had to skip dinner to answer the questions. So thanks Atem!


If you have questions, however, feel free to pop them. Prior to the end of the contest, I will collect all the questions and ask Atem personally.
  18:28:08  29 December 2004
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GrislySilence
Fanfic Reviewer
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On forum: 10/06/2003
 

Message edited by:
Amoki
12/29/2004 19:38:28
Messages: 168
Any updates on the author's and fan's characters that we sent in? If not, when will we know?

MOD- responded and integrated. You are just in time
  19:44:25  29 December 2004
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Amoki
back with a vengeance
(V.I.P.)

 

 
On forum: 07/31/2003
 

Message edited by:
Amoki
12/29/2004 19:46:19
Messages: 1729
Stories that have been confirmed missing and will be posted soon enough, as said by Atem

1) Fallen
2) Through the eyes of a sniper
3) Crystallin Sibling
4) A mind of its own
5) Prey of One Part 5 and 6
6) Friends - life of a stalker
7) Sergey, Part 2
8) The inhuman condition


Stories were delayed due to the abrupt departure of She'e'ma Nazarbaev, who were a member of GSC and the person in chage of formatting contest stories to specified fonts, style, etc. So if anyone willing to help...


These stories are part of the contest, they will be eligible for author's voting (both their stories and their respective authors


Now, back to sleep, since I wake up at about 4.15am for the interview...
  00:19:48  30 December 2004
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Chode
Token Weird Guy
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On forum: 12/30/2003
Messages: 381
I don't know if questions are still been taken, but....

Q. Are GSC so far happy with the calibre (quality, style, type) of characters that are been submitted? Or should we narrow it down to a more specific kind?




@Amoki: I'll have you know Deus Ex is a very meaningful title. It comes from the Latin phrase, Deus Ex Machiana (quite literally, a god from a machine). It was a drama term from ancient Rome and Greece, in which the protaganist of a play would be saved by the "machines of the gods", normally a rope ladder or similar which would descend from the heavens. The game Deus Ex took this literally, through the Daedalus story line, as the AI Daedalus was a god from a machine)
  01:32:10  30 December 2004
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Amoki
back with a vengeance
(V.I.P.)

 

 
On forum: 07/31/2003
Messages: 1729
I do know that "Deus Ex" means 'from God'. But in my personal opinion, the plot of the story means nothing from its title, as said. But perhaps the word 'stupid' is a huge understatement. Changing.

Besides - Daedalus isn't exactly a ladder thrown down from God. It's a convenient way to track down Gary Savage to lead him to X-51, and to find Tracer Tong. The only thing Bob Page didn't count on though, was that JC could destroy Walton Simons via 2 HE grenade Remember what Bob Page said? "I have been listening to you all along" (via JCDenton's infolink) in X-51.
  06:34:39  30 December 2004
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Chode
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On forum: 12/30/2003
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Daedalus isn't the ladder thrown down from heaven. The Deus Ex Machiana idea is the literal translation: A god from a machine. Daedalus, when merged with JC Denton, will be a machine-augmented human being with global network access to every computer on the planet, and clontrol every tiny detail of every persons lives.

The inside jacket of the game discussed in detail the meaning of Deus Ex Machiana. Just remember the literal meaning, not the dramatic meaning.
  09:47:55  30 December 2004
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Amoki
back with a vengeance
(V.I.P.)

 

 
On forum: 07/31/2003
Messages: 1729
LOL, actually, you have a point. To add that the full name of "Deus Ex" is actually "Deus Ex - The conspiracy.". The version of Deus Ex I have is "Deus Ex- game of the year" edition, 10 dollar product of your Aussie "Red Ant Enterprise" I only realised my fault after a while. So you're correct.

I retracted and modified my transcript slightly.
  12:02:51  30 December 2004
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Chode
Token Weird Guy
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On forum: 12/30/2003
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Hey, I didn't mean you had to retract your previous statements or nothing. I was just adding my opinion on Deus Ex's title...and everyone is entitled to their opinion.

Maybe I shouldn't mention my opinions on Half Life's title
  07:40:01  12 March 2005
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UltimaGecko
Senior Resident
 

 
On forum: 01/28/2004
Messages: 154
Perhaps it would have helped if I'd come a bit eariler; could have e-mail voted on some stories (pffft, oh well; might not matter anyway). Decent interview...lets me know where that story I sent in last year fluttered off to.



Deus Ex Machina - God from [the] Machine ; ancient Greek dramatic theme adapted to modern movies and plays, generally meaning the protagonist is saved at the last moment.
I believe (but can't remember exactly), but they'd lower an actor playing a God down on machines for parts of their plot...if that's remembered right.

Half-Life - The time it takes for half the amount of a given isotope to decay.

Half-Life's title could be considered as a pun on how Gordon's life sort of ends half-way (as the sequel sort of takes off of); or just relating to radioactive things throughout the game. I find the intermediate chapter titles much better. Example: Surface Tension - refering to the inherent elasticity on the surface of liquids resulting in a resisting force when unbroken (why you can float a needle on water, but it will sink if you poke it through the water); but also to your fight on the surface of Black Mesa.


If you want a really crappy name; Syphon Filter is what you're looking for - since the name was invented before the game was even thought out. Doesn't make it a bad game though .



Anyway...yea...nice interview...fairly informative.
  09:24:12  12 March 2005
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Amoki
back with a vengeance
(V.I.P.)

 

 
On forum: 07/31/2003
 

Message edited by:
Amoki
03/12/2005 9:25:44
Messages: 1729

---QUOTATION---
Perhaps it would have helped if I'd come a bit eariler; could have e-mail voted on some stories (pffft, oh well; might not matter anyway). Decent interview...lets me know where that story I sent in last year fluttered off to.
---END QUOTATION---



What you mean, your story fluttered off to? Check the contest website again!
 
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