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Interview with Aaron Leiby


3/31/00 by Tom Smallwood
with Aaron Leiby
Sr. Programmer
Legend Entertainment

Can you tell us a little about your responsibilities while working on WoT?

Aaron Leiby: I was responsible for getting all the artifacts (ter'angreal) working in the game. I also did Mashadar and Machin Shin and had a first hand in Arena mode. ParticleSystems, Rain, Decals fell onto my plate also.

How did you get into the game design field?

Aaron Leiby: Actually WOT was my first commercial product. It was the need for more developers on the WOT team that brought me to Legend. And the rest is history -- or so they say.

What is your favorite computer game after WoT?

Aaron Leiby: Soul Calibur is right at the top of my charts at the moment.

Do you play user created levels?

Aaron Leiby: I've played a few.

What is the biggest problem you see in user made levels?

Aaron Leiby: Texturing. People like to take the time to create lots of cool geometry, but often they skimp out on spending the appropriatly needed time to fine tune the details that make the level stand apart. Texturing is an amazingly huge part of the perception of a level, and one that is too often overlooked.

What changes do you see coming in computer games over the next 5 years?

Aaron Leiby: More focused games. Games focused entirely on Singleplayer and story, or games focused entirely on Multiplayer like we are already seeing with titles such as UnrealTournament. Massively Multiplayer games like Evercrack and the likes seem to be becoming more and more popular. Also, as technology becomes more and more advanced, I think we'll see less emphasis on the newest technologies game X sports and more emphasis on real content that the game presents.

What are you doing now that WoT is finished?

Aaron Leiby: Working on our next title - Unreal2. I'm also finishing up my degree as quickly as possible. (Not a combination I would recommend to anyone -- kids don't try this at home.)

What did you enjoy most about working on WoT? Least?

Aaron Leiby: I think I get the greatest joy simply from working with the excellent team here at Legend that has a shared passion for making great games.

Finally, how about a quick strategy tip for MP?

Aaron Leiby: Pick up the damn bags! So often I see someone get killed and the guys that killed him doesn't go pick up their bag. Bags are gold mines. Often I'll walk into a room and see 3 or 4 bags laying around. I pick them up and I'm fully stocked and ready to rock everyone else's world.

I want to thank Aaron Leiby for this interview. Look for more interviews with Legend's staff over the next few days.

Previous Interview - Sam Brown

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