Content of the article: "Fallout New Vegas, where are they now? A look into who is left from the original New Vegas dev team at Obsidian"
Hey guys! Since I know we are all excited about the fact that the chance of a "Fallout New Vegas 2" isn't 0% anymore, I figured I would talk about who on the original New Vegas team is still around at Obsidian. I think many people don't realize that Obsidian is not just one dev team, it is actually split up into 3 to 4 separate teams depending on how many games Obsidian has in production. For example right now Obsidian has 4 teams in no particular order: Team 1 is working on Avowed, Team 2 is working on Grounded, Team 3 recently released The Outer Worlds and is currently working on it's DLC, and Team 4, headed up by Josh Sawyer, is currently working on an unannounced project that has been in development since the release of Pillars of Eternity 2 back in mid 2018.
Below I'll be going over the Lead developers and writers who worked on New Vegas, as well as what they have been working on since, and whether or not they are still at Obsidian. The titles next to their name correspond to the role they played in developing New Vegas.
Josh Sawyer: Project Director, Lead Designer, and System Designer (Still there)
- Prior to New Vegas, Josh would be most well known for being a designer on Icewind Dale, and the Lead Designer on Icewind Dale II and Neverwinter Nights 2. Since New Vegas, he has directed both Pillars of Eternity 1 & 2, and is currently working on an unannounced title at Obsidian. He did not work on Outer Worlds other than providing feedback occasionally due to his role as the Studio Design Director for Obsidian.
John Gonzalez: Creative Design Lead, Lead Writer (No longer there)
- Prior to New Vegas, John would be most well known for his role as the Lead Narrative Designer of Tom Clancy’s EndWar over at Ubisoft, before joining Obsidian to work on New Vegas as the Lead Writer. Following New Vegas, John left the company sometime after all of the New Vegas DLC was finished in order to go work at Guerrilla Games as the Lead Writer for Horizon Zero Dawn. He recently left Guerrilla in order to work at a new studio called Smilegate Barcelona, a spinoff of the South Korean developer Smilegate, in order to work on an unannounced AAA open-world game.
Chris Avellone: Writer (No longer there)
- Prior to New Vegas, Chris would be most well known as the Lead Writer and Designer for Planescape: Torment and Kotor 2, as well as a designer for Fallout 2 and Icewind Dale 1 & 2. He was also the Lead Designer for the cancelled “Van Buren” also known as “Fallout 3” over at Interplay before their closure and sale of the IP to Bethesda. Following New Vegas, Chris would work as a writer for Pillars of Eternity and Tyranny before leaving Obsidian in 2015 to work as a freelance writer. As a freelance he would write for Torment: Tides of Numenera, Prey, Divinity: Original Sin II, Pathfinder Kingmaker, and Jedi: Fallen Order.
Eric Fenstermaker: Writer, Area Designer (Still there)
- Prior to New Vegas, Erik was a writer for Neverwinter Nights 2. Following the release of New Vegas, as well as the departure of New Vegas Lead Writer “John Gonzalez”, Erik would serve as the Lead Writer for South Park: The Stick of Truth, as well as the Lead Narrative Designer on Pillars of Eternity 1 & 2. He did not work on The Outer Worlds and is seemingly working on either Avowed, or the aforementioned unannounced game along with Josh Sawyer, most likely as its Lead Narrative Designer.
Travis Stout: Writer, Area Designer (No longer there)
- Prior to New Vegas, Travis’s only credit is as an additional designer for Neverwinter Nights 2. Following New Vegas, he began work as an area designer for South Park: The Stick of Truth, but left during development to work on State of Decay as a designer. Since then Travis went to Ubisoft where he worked as a writer on Assassin’s Creed Unity & Syndicate, and For Honor.
Joe Sanabria: Lead Artist (No longer there)
- Following New Vegas, Joe was laid off from Obsidian in 2011 and currently works as a freelance artist as well as an adjunct professor over at Laguna College of Art and Design.
Scott Everts: World Building Lead (Still there)
- A Technical/Level Designer on Fallout 1 & 2, Planescape: Torment, and Icewind Dale 1 & 2, Scott would leave the defunct Interplay Entertainment in 2004 to join the newly formed Obsidian Entertainment. Here he would be a designer on Kotor 2 and Neverwinter Nights 2, before becoming the World Building Lead on Fallout New Vegas. Following New Vegas, his name does not pop up again until the release of The Outer Worlds, where he was one of 10 different Environment Artists that worked on the game. I’m not sure if he was demoted, or what he was doing in the interim between the two games but if anyone does know, please let me know as I was unable to find more info.
Mark Bremerkamp: Lead Animator (No longer there)
- Prior to New Vegas, Mark would be most well known for being the Lead Animator on the cult classic Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines. At Obsidian he would work as the Lead Animator on Fallout: New Vegas, Alpha Protocol, and Pillars of Eternity. During production of Pillars, Mark left Obsidian and moved to Michigan in order to be closer to his family.
Charlie Staples: Area Design Lead, Lead Level Designer (Still there)
- After New Vegas, Charlie would act as the Level Design Lead on South Park: The Stick of Truth, the Systems Designer on the cancelled Armored Warfare, and the Design Director on The Outer Worlds.
Frank Kowalkowski: Lead Programmer (No longer there)
- Prior to New Vegas, Frank was a programmer on Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance II, and Kotor 2. And was the Lead Programmer on Neverwinter Nights 2. Following the release of New Vegas, Frank joined Blizzard as a programmer for World of Warcraft and has since been promoted to Technical Director as of the latest expansion pack, World of Warcraft: Shadowlands.
Now obviously this list is a mere fraction of the 100+ people who worked on the game, but I felt that focusing on the Lead roles (since they had the largest impact on the game), as well as the writers (Since New Vegas's script is so beloved) would be the best way to display the information without going overboard and listing dozens upon dozens of people. It was surprising for me to find out how few people from the New Vegas team actually worked on The Outer Worlds. That's likely why The Outer Worlds was so different from New Vegas, which is what many people expected it to play similar too. I think anyone worried however after reading this that Obsidian no longer has the talent they once had needn't worry since Obsidian has hired many new talented devs since, and also Josh Sawyer is still at the company and he played the largest role in the development of the game by far. Anyway, thanks for reading!
- Obsidians Josh Sawyer on what he would do if given the opportunity to make another Fallout.
- Today marks the 10th anniversary of Fallout New Vegas!
- Why a Remake of Fallout: New Vegas would be better (right now) than Fallout: New Vegas 2
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