In this latest exclusive Gamasutra interview
, Ubisoft creative director Clint Hocking (Splinter Cell
series) talks about his influences, as well as how to create great games through "different flavors" of player exploration.
In this excerpt, Hocking opens up about his own need to explore his virtual surroundings in video games, reflecting on his somewhat unique experiences with Bethesda's role-playing epic The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
“Well, I talked a lot about exploration games needing to provide ubiquitous, low-value rewards. Oblivion, like I said, does that really well with alchemical ingredients. But what I didn't talk about, and I intentionally left it off to the side, was this idea that one of the things I did in Oblivion was I went to places just to get beautiful panoramas. I went to the highest mountain I could find just to see how far I could see. I went all the way to the sea at the bottom of the world just to see the sunset.
Literally, I left my controller there and drank a beer while the sun set. There is no reward for that. It was just wanting to see what the game did and how it worked. So there is this other kind of reward which is just the feeling of this openness and seeing how rich the simulation is, which is something you can’t usually do in games.”
You can now read the entire feature
, which includes more from Hocking on player exploration in games, as well as his feelings towards using games to convey real-world messages (no registration required, please feel free to link to this column from external websites).