General:Anthony Gill Interview
Last year, TheRockWithAMedecineCupOnHisHead got in touch with a designer credited for the first two TEST games, Stormhold and Dawnstar. Anthony was kind enough to let Rock pick his brain almost twenty years after his short stint on The Elder Scrolls. Enjoy!
Rock: Hi Anthony! I saw you were credited for a couple of old Elder Scrolls spinoffs created in the early 2000's, do you mind if I ask you about them?
Anthony Gill: "Hi [Rock], That seems like ancient history. :) Back in 2000 I worked with RPG veteran Greg Gorden to create Elder Scrolls Travels. I think it was only out on some Nokia devices and the N-Gage. I did most of the mechanics and characters, and he did most of the flavor and business stuff. Theres probably a video out there on YouTube of it somewhere. Also did a bunch of stuff that certainly no one has ever heard of. Thanks for asking!"
Rock: When you were developing TEST, were you under the impression that the games were concurrent with the main game's timeline-wise? Or were they a kind of prequels (like the third TEST game Shadowkey)?
Anthony Gill: "To my knowledge, there wasn't any discussion about how they fit into the overall chronology. They were basically side events happening roughly around the time Morrowind was set."
Rock: There's some speculation in the community about what the Ice Tribes of TEST Dawnstar are, any indication as to what these mobs are supposed to be?
Anthony Gill: "Unfortunately I wasn't heavily involved in Dawnstar, so your guess would be as good as mine."
Rock: Did you play any Elder Scrolls before working on the mobile games?
Anthony Gill: "I did play Morrowind quite a bit before designing TES:T, but that was largely my first exposure. I thought it was pretty cool that you leveled up skills by actually using them - that certainly seemed new at the time, and is probably still underutilized now."
Rock: Can you talk a bit about what the collaboration was like with Bethesda?
Anthony Gill: "Greg [Gorden] took care of all of the business communications, but requirements were pretty open. It did have to follow the general theme and mechanics of an ES game, but the plot was pretty wide open."
Rock: Thanks for the interview, Anthony!