Josh Sawyer (born October 18, 1975), is an American video game designer , known for his work on role-playing video games .

Early life and education

Sawyer grew up in Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin , and is the son of Linda Sawyer and sculptor Gerald P. Sawyer. [2] He is of German ancestry. [3] He earned a BA degree from Lawrence University in Appleton, Wisconsin . In addition to being a history major, Sawyer participated in the theater (including mounting a production of Assassins ). After Lawrence, Sawyer moved to California .

Career

Starting as a web designer at Black Isle Studios in 1999, he quickly worked on an associate position and then lead designer on Icewind Dale II . [4] [5] While at Black Isle, he was known for coming up with the “Ex-Presidents” project naming system.

In November 2003 Sawyer announced his departure from Black Isle, where he had been serving as lead designer of Fallout 3 , to pursue other projects. [6] Interplay went on to close Black Isle two weeks after Sawyer’s departure. [7]

On July 19, 2005, GameSpot reported that he had left Midway’s Gauntlet: Seven Sorrows , and was accepted to position at Obsidian Entertainment , a studio founded and staffed by many veterans of Black Isle. His first role was the lead designer for Neverwinter Nights 2 . [8]

He later became the director and lead designer of Fallout: New Vegas . In December 2011 Sawyer is a new version of the game that has been released in New Vegas . [9] As of November 2012, this is up to version 5.1 which was released in September 2012. [10]

He also served as project director and lead designer on the Aliens RPG . [11] Publisher SEGA subsequently canceled the result at layoffs at Obsidian. [12] According to Obsidian CEO Feargus Urquhart , the game – titled Aliens: Crucible [13] – “looked and felt like it was ready to ship”. [14] [15]

In 2012, with a publisher, Sawyer proposed the company returns to its design roots by making an isometric RPG in the style of those created at Black Isle. Arguing there was a market for this type of game among fans, Sawyer suggests turning to the platform Kickstarter to secure funding for development without a publisher. He succeeds in persuading company leadership, and the game – then called Project Eternity – puts its Kickstarter funding goal of $ 1.1 million in 27 hours. It was nearly $ 4 million, setting a Kickstarter record. [16] [17]

Sawyer went on to serve as director and design lead on this title, which was renamed Pillars of Eternity for release. [18]

Works

  • Icewind Dale (2000), designer
  • Icewind Dale: Heart of Winter (2001), designer
  • Icewind Dale II (2002), lead designer
  • Neverwinter Nights 2 (2006), lead designer
  • Alpha Protocol (2010), designer
  • Fallout: New Vegas (2010), director, lead designer
  • Pillars of Eternity (2015), director, lead designer, writer
  • Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire (2018), director [19]

References

  1. Jump up^ “I Sawyer” . GiantBomb . Retrieved February 19, 2016 .
  2. Jump up^ Daily Jefferson County Union. January 14th, 2011. Liedtke, Carolyn. “Sawyer sculpts success throughout Wisconsin”. p. 3.
  3. Jump up^ “I Sawyer” . Archived from the original on 2013-04-12.
  4. Jump up^ Ooi, Will (September 25, 2011). “An Interview with JE Sawyer – game developer, biker, and cat lover” . Gamasutra . UBM TechWeb . Retrieved September 26, 2011 .
  5. Jump up^ (July 2005). “The Arcade Classic Is Back, and It’s Better Be Good”,Official US PlayStation Magazine (94): 38.
  6. Jump up^ Thorsen, Tor. “I Sawyer Black Isle Bolts” . GameSpot . Retrieved January 30, 2017 .
  7. Jump up^ Thorsen, Tor. “Interplay shuts down Black Isle Studios” . GameSpot . Retrieved January 30, 2017 .
  8. Jump up^ Thorsen, Tor. “Saw Saw Off Gauntlet: Seven Sorrows” . GameSpot . Retrieved January 30, 2017 .
  9. Jump up^ Kayatta, Mike (December 30, 2011). “Fallout: New Vegas Project Director Releases Personal Mod” . The Escapist . Defy Media . Retrieved March 8, 2015 .
  10. Jump up^ “JSawyer.esp – v5.1” .
  11. Jump up^ SEGA Signs Obsidian Entertainment To Develop Alien Title For Next-Generation Systems
  12. Jump up^ Faylor, Chris. “Aliens RPG Canceled, Says Ex-Obsidian Staffer” . Shacknews . Retrieved January 30, 2017 .
  13. Jump up^ “Here’s What Obsidian’s Canceled Aliens RPG: Crucible Looked Like”. GameSpy . Retrieved January 30, 2017 .
  14. Jump up^ Purchese, Robert. “Obsidian’s canned RPG Aliens looks finished in new gameplay video” . Eurogamer . Retrieved January 30, 2017 .
  15. Jump up^ Purchese, Robert. “Obsidian: Aliens RPG was” ready to ship ” ” . Eurogamer . Retrieved February 9, 2017 .
  16. Jump up^ Schreier, Jason. “How Kickstarter Saved Obsidian” . Kotaku . Retrieved January 30, 2017 .
  17. Jump up^ Purchese, Robert (December 4, 2012). “Project Eternity crowd-funding ends, grand total now $ 4.3 million” . Eurogamer . Gamer Network . Retrieved June 29, 2015 .
  18. Jump up^ Purchese, Robert (December 10, 2012). “Obsidian Project Eternity, releases a proper video” . Eurogamer . Gamer Network . Retrieved June 29, 2015 .
  19. Jump up^ “Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire Campaign Launch Trailer” . Youtube. January 26, 2017 . Retrieved January 27, 2016 .