GamersInfo.net: What's the biggest difference about working on the new Windows Vista platform?
Matthнas Guрmundsson: Vista brings mainly two new things for us. One is DirectX 10 and the other is tightened security. The new graphic engine will take advantage of unique new features in DirectX 10. We will have to make sure our code jives with the new security model in Vista. This mostly concerns installing and patching, as well as writing to the cache folder. Vista also has new features like the Game Explorer which we will look into.
GamersInfo.net: What kind of difficulties have you encountered with the Vivox integration? Have you looked past simple voice channels into more integration of the technology into the game? (One example a Vivox employee told me at E3 was using it to simulate hacking an enemy's communications - if you only got 50% of them, you'd only hear 50% of the packets, randomly, of their talking)
Matthнas Guрmundsson: There haven't been any technical difficulties to speak of. The most difficult part is to find time and people to complete it. The Vivox voice chat that's currently being demoed is really a proof of concept rather than a beta version of the Vivox integration. The final version is now being designed by our game designers but the low level integration is already complete.
GamersInfo.net: What's your favorite part of the game when you're in it? How about from a "behind the scenes" kind of situation?
Matthнas Guрmundsson: I play EVE quite casually and sporadically. As such, I rely on my trusty agents to give me juicy kill missions whenever I want. To enjoy the game I need to shut down my programmer brain for a while. Once when I was starting with a new character I did some major career planning by running a lot of queries on the DB. Using that info I was going to maximize my agent / skill / ISK / loot gain in as smallest time as possible. It really didn't work out and it really wasn't any fun either.
GamersInfo.net: What new feature are you looking forward to having in the game for when you play?
Matthнas Guрmundsson: Walking on planets. No doubt about that.
GamersInfo.net: If you could pick any other job at CCP to do, and automagically got the skills to do it, which would you pick?
Matthнas Guрmundsson: That would either be painting or story writing. Shrewd readers would undoubtly spot a pattern here. Those positions are dominated by left-brainers while programming is in the far right. I've always wanted to draw and paint and write good text.
GamersInfo.net: What about the game - either while playing or while developing on it - is most likely to drive you to drink (or your other vice of your choice)?
Matthнas Guрmundsson: Doing creative development, like coding new features, makes me feel great. So great, I really feel like going out for a few beers. On the other hand, doing mundance chores, like debugging the same bug for the third day in a row, makes me angry, depressed and sad. So sad, I really feel like going out for a few beers. So I guess it's a win-win situation really...
GamersInfo.net: What other games and hobbies do you enjoy?
Matthнas Guрmundsson: I've been playing first person shooters feverously for the past 15 years. I haven't actually played any game since Half-Life 2. Maybe the FPS genre is going into a crisis, or maybe it's me. Non-electronic hobbies include football, basketball and golf.
GamersInfo.net: What's your favorite race and ship?
Matthнas Guрmundsson: My lawyer has advised me not to answer this question.
GamersInfo.net: What's been the hardest thing for you to implement?
Matthнas Guрmundsson: It's basically everything that was done the year before launch. It was no specific feature as such, but the whole crunch mode and time pressure made everything a bit harder. In retrospect, I wouldn't have had it any other way.
GamersInfo.net: What do you like to do in the game while you're playing?
Matthнas Guрmundsson: Blow things up, of course.
GamersInfo.net: Does the camera resetting all the time annoy you as much as me?
Matthнas Guрmundsson: If you are talking about the camera resetting after the target blows up, then yes. Watching something that's about to blow up, and then the camera suddenly warps away, simply sucks.
GamersInfo.net: What are you thoughts on buying and selling isk, especially as to what it means to the "casual" player (on both ends, selling small amounts of isk, or buying isk)?
Matthнas Guрmundsson: I think it's fine to buy and sell ISK casually. The problem I have with this whole ISK business is that it tends to create professional ISK sellers, that are the worst kind of players. They will do anything for easy ISK, including cheating, macroing and running sweat-shops. It's simply bad business for CCP and bad experience for other players. There might exist a perfect solution to this, and if so, I hope we find it and implement it.