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‘EverQuest II’ Senior Producer Interview

21 Apr 2008  by   Paul Younger

Bruce Ferguson tells us about his new role as Senior Producer. He also talks about his experience of the game and what the future holds for the MMO.Big Man Bruce

You are the new senior producer for EverQuest II, what does your job entail?

A little bit of everything! Being the senior manager on the project, I get to touch everything about the game from planning, budgeting, hiring, scheduling, evaluating, designing, approving, playing, marketing&h**ip;you name it, I get to do it, or be involved in some aspect of it. Mostly it is a team management role, similar to any manager you may have had, ensuring that people have the tools they need to get the job done, and making sure all the puzzle pieces fit together.

Do you find it a little bit difficult to follow in the steps of Scott Hartsman who has clearly left his strong mark on the community of players in EQ II?

Absolutely. Scott and I are old friends and have worked together quite closely over the last 7 years here at Sony Online Entertainment. I’m truly impressed with what he was able to accomplish with this incredible team, and sorry to see him go. That being said, the really great thing is I get to work with the same talented people that Scott did, and help keep the tradition alive. This team is a group of truly talented individuals that I’m quite pleased to be with them.

I can only imagine that you are an avid EQII player. What class and race do you like to play in Norrath and why?

It’s funny, as almost every interview I do has this question. I have played almost every race and class up to at least level 20, but I don’t actually get to play as much as I would like to. Currently I’m working on a Sarnak Wizard, to enjoy the Timorous Deep starting area, but I’m as likely to be playing any other class or race tomorrow. The important thing is to ensure that all are as balanced and fun as possible. Sometimes that’s hard to do, so I try to look at specific cases where we’re getting feedback that things aren’t fun, whether it’s a class issue, or a quest issue, so I get to bounce back and forth a lot.

‘Lore’ is one of the most important elements of EverQuest II. Which character fascinates you the most?

Wow, that’s a hard one. The correct answer is all of them. In fact, there are some characters that haven’t yet been revealed in game play that are pretty interesting as well. We’ll get a chance to reveal them soon in either an upcoming Game Update or Expansion.

The guide program in EverQuest II has a mission to guide the new players and to animate the servers as well. However, the role of these guides on the servers is mysterious and somehow confidential. Will this program develop future servers’ animations at a wider scale?

At this time we are looking into how to better implement this program. Stay tuned for more information in the future.

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