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View, browse and sort the ever-growing list of sessions by day, time, pass type, topic, and format. With this Session Viewer, you can view session and speaker details for Game Developers Conference 2024.

You will be able to build your schedule with the GDC Mobile App. The GDC 2024 app will be available for download in Apple Apps and Google Play late February 2024.

Sessions do fill up and seating is first come, first serve, so arrive early to sessions that you would like to attend. Adding a session to your schedule does not guarantee you a seat.

Classic Game Postmortem: 'The Elder Scrolls, Chapter I: Arena'

Ted Peterson  (CEO, OnceLost Games)

Julian LeFay  (Technical Director, OnceLost Games)

Location: Room 2002, West Hall

Date: Wednesday, March 20

Time: 3:30 pm - 4:30 pm

Pass Type: All Access Pass, Core Pass - Get your pass now!

Topic: Design, Production & Team Leadership

Format: Session

Vault Recording: Not Recorded

Audience Level: All

Julian LeFay and Ted Peterson on the 30th anniversary of the first Elder Scrolls game, Arena, discuss its origin, development, and publication from their perspective as creative leads on design and programming. Bethesda Softworks had previously only had success with sports games and its Terminator franchise, but LeFay and Peterson believed they could create a role-playing game based on an original property, a risky proposition. They delve into how the concept had to change radically because of technical hurdles during the course of development, resulting in missing their deadline and a less-than-stellar release. As a flop became a cult hit, and a sequel was warranted, LeFay and Peterson reflect on lessons learned that led to the development of a series which has sold billions of units and received critical acclaim. They conclude on what has brought them together decades later to continue their creative partnership.


Attendees leave this discussion with a deeper understanding of game creation for an original title, and how things have changed and remained the same. 30 years ago, need tools and a 3D engine? Build them yourself. Production issues forcing a creative about-face? Face it head on.

Intended Audience

No prerequisites for attendees, though to be honest, people who played the first two or three Elder Scrolls games will probably get more of the impact of certain creative decisions.

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