Dave Stern Joins Stardock to Oversee Creative Storytelling

By on January 4, 2011 8:10:13 PM from GalCiv II Forums GalCiv II Forums External Link

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Stardock Entertainment continues to bolster its development staff as renowned fantasy and science fiction writer/editor Dave Stern joins Stardock to oversee creative storytelling and lore implementation in all future projects, including the recently launched Elemental: War of MagicStern, author of numerous books including the novelizations of Lara Croft: Tomb Raider and The Blair Witch Project and former editor of Pocket Books Star Trek and science fiction lines, was responsible for putting together the Hiergamenon lore book for Elemental: War of Magic Limited Edition. Stern will head up all further integration of the Elemental: War of Magic lore into the increasingly popular strategy title as Stardock continues to offer unparalleled post release support for the game.

 

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January 4, 2011 11:38:27 PM from GalCiv II Forums GalCiv II Forums

Sounds cool. Let's hope the quality of the games are as good as the lore that drives them.

No offense, but Elemental was a pretty big bummer.

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January 5, 2011 5:49:42 AM from GalCiv II Forums GalCiv II Forums

This is welcome news! Adding more storytelling and lore implementation skills is bound to have a positive effect.

Yet I think that the greatest weakness at the moment is not in this area.

Adding a developer who is as passionate about quality and performance as Brad is about story telling and who can deliver in those areas would, I think, have a much greater effect. Brad is a better visionary and story teller than he is a programmer or a UI developer. He needs to add one or more excellent developers to provide him with better tools to enable him to realize and deliver his visions. People who can make appropriate quality/cost tradeoffs in creating tools suitable for use at his layer of thinking/vision for a game, and people who can make the result more immediately appealing and intuitive to a majority of potential users.

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January 6, 2011 12:12:11 AM from GalCiv II Forums GalCiv II Forums

I have also seen a frightening rumor that you've hired Jon Shafer - formally of Fireaxis...

If true - whatever you do - dont let him near Galactic Civilisations - he ruined Civilisation...dont let him ruin that as well...

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January 6, 2011 4:04:33 AM from GalCiv II Forums GalCiv II Forums

Quoting MRW1969,
I have also seen a frightening rumor that you've hired Jon Shafer - formally of Fireaxis...

If true - whatever you do - dont let him near Galactic Civilisations - he ruined Civilisation...dont let him ruin that as well...

I searched this and it is true. See http://news.bigdownload.com/2011/01/04/exclusive-civilization-vs-lead-designer-hired-by-stardock/

I'm very surprised by this choice. I think Jon Shafer is just about the worst possible choice to fill in where Brad is weak. Their weaknesses and strengths seem very similar. I can see why they might resonate but that doesn't seem like a good thing in this case. Both of them have major weaknesses as well as strengths and this union won't help either of them in that regard.

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April 4, 2011 12:10:16 AM from GalCiv II Forums GalCiv II Forums

Well, I wonder if this is the same Dave Stern who edited my novel, "The Flying Man" about ten years ago? What a nice coincidence that would be.

But my main reason for replying is to comment on the concern about having Jon Shafer touch Gal Civ: if he is really is the fellow responsible for the dilution of Civilization, please don't let him do that to the Gal Civ series. I say that as a real x4 TBS fan, who stumbled onto Gal Civ 2 as the first TBS game to pull me away from Sid Meier's Civilization series. I've played the Civilization series through Civilization 3 Conquests, which I still play (modded to tweak out the Corruption issues that were never fixed by the developers). I played Civ IV, the one one Mr. Shafer might have had a hand in, and was so dismally disappointed: the game was dumbed down to work on consoles and attract shallow players. Important gameplay features were dumped, choices became more limited, the unpredictability of battle outcomes was reduced, the game lost its sense of humor, and the graphics were muddy and clumsy. In Civilizations 3 I could create games that would last weeks and test my abilities, but not Civ 4. Civ 3 was like a great indie movie;,while Civ 4 was like some Hollywood committee movie, watered down for the masses. And the masses aren't a loyal audience.

I'm new to Gal Civ2, but am very impressed with the creator's vision, philosophy, and execution, bringing this absorbing and details-available strategy game to us under-estimated group of serious TBS players. I hope the franchise keeps showing its respect for this audience, by not reducing by one iota the amount of choice and detail Gal Civ offers in future iterations. And if Gal Civ 2 is done as a series, I hope the next TBS game offered by this company provides the same richness of player involvement as Gal Civ.

Anyway, thanks for Gal Civ 2 and all its expansions: this has been a pleasure for me to find, after the several hundted games of Civ 3 modded I've played.

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