Mail Sack 23
Posted by DeeJ at 6/29/2012 12:05 PM PDT
The ensemble piece that is the Mail Sack was almost a buddy movie featuring me and the only Bungie guy who braved the mailroom this week. Don’t let that hurt your feelings. As evidenced by the diary I published the other day, we have been working a little more frantically than usual. Looking down the barrel of an awkward duet, I shouted a more desperate plea across the studio floor. I may have also threatened to substitute this weekly ritual of sharing and caring with one of the more bizarre email threads that erupt in our inboxes when people are high on caffeine and low on sleep.

That touched off a stampede. Was it sympathy or panic? We will never know. But, check out this panel!

Jon Cable, Senior Engineer
David Candland, Senior Artist
Derek Carroll, Senior Designer
Joey Gibbs, Production Assistant
Tyson Green, Staff Designer
Nate Hawbaker, Associate Technical Artist
Brandi House, User Researcher
David Johnson, Engineer
Luke Ledwich, Test Engineer
Jim Levasseur, Cinematic Designer
Steve Lopez, IT Overlord
Dan Miller, Senior Designer
Joshua Rodgers, Engineer
Tom Sanocki, Staff Artist
John Stvan, Graphic Designer
Scott Taylor, Associate Producer
Michael Williams, Senior Engineer
Ben Wommack, Production Engineer

Together, we could overrun a real postal service. Instead, let’s just open the Sack.

Spartan1065 You always talk about topics of conversation we can explore but, after the 22nd week of random questions that have nothing to do with your next game I have to wonder, what else is there to talk about?

It's no secret that we can’t explore the details of our next game, but that leaves a lot on the table. We can talk about the people who are making it. We can ask what inspires them. We can compel them to relive what brought them here, and explore how they prepared themselves for the work they are doing now. You don’t need to take my word for it. Just read on.


R3dDragon07 What is the most outlandish experience you've drawn on to help with your current work at Bungie?

That time in college when I stayed awake for 72 hours.
John Stvan

I've got a minor in history, which has helped surprisingly often when working on our games. It has applied when discussing the story with writers, but has also helped in thinking about social behavior in our games.
Michael Williams

When I was a kid visiting the homes of others, I was intrusive and nosey to a very rude degree. I would open and poke around inside any drawers, cupboards, closets - whatever I could find. In hindsight, this curiosity helped me become a good tester.
Ben Wommack

My previous CIA experience.
Dan Miller

I have to say that Dan has been extremely helpful in training me to resist the urge to divulge secrets under the threat of torture. You will never break me, Bungie Community!


Krimm117 Could you tell us about your most memorable experience with the Bungie fan community?

Every time a fan casually notices the badge hanging from my hip and asks if I really REALLY work for Bungie, it's an amazing experience.
David Johnson

All of those Xbox Messages asking for Reconz.
Dan Miller

We had a panel with fans a few years ago at PAX and autographed what seemed like a million posters, helmets, games, and other swag. Seeing the passion there meant even more than visiting the long lines at the midnight launches.
Michael Williams

The Halo 2 launch when we met the fans at Redmond Town Center. Amazing high energy crowd!
Steve Lopez

The time I attended a Bungie.org LAN party at Louis Wu's in New York. There were about 30 of us there, and I got to spend some quality time with each of them. I experienced everything from deep discussions about modern Sci-Fi, to brainstorming cool iPad games, to making Swedish meatballs. And, yes, we even played some Halo. While there, I wasn't a Bungie employee, I was a fan, just like everyone else.
David Candland


Minywheats If there is one programming language that the programming ninjas at Bungie really love, what is it?

I'm a production assistant. As far as I'm concerned, all of that stuff falls under the general catch-all of "the blackest of magicks."
Joey Gibbs

I've become a huge fan of C#. We use it for almost all of our tools and server work. It is incredibly fast, very readable, yet still powerful enough to get the job done.
Michael Williams

C#! It's like playing with Legos.
Joshua Rodgers

Oh come on, who isn't going to answer C#?
Nate Hawbaker

Editor’s Note: These guys…

Malbolge. It warms my heart and makes me happy.
Tom Sanocki

These kinds of questions start religious wars. Programmers love their languages of choice like they love their firstborn. I've heard some mumbled appreciation for Python.
Jon Cable

This isn't the correct answer, but I'll always say LISP, simply because our Halo scripting language was so LISP-like in syntax design. Parentheses, everywhere.
(Ben Wommack)


SharkTooth Do people keep their cool during crunches or are there usually a handful of fights (verbal or physical)?

Fights are usually Man vs. Machine, rather than Man vs. Man.
Derek Carroll

I've definitely noticed a lot more people wearing their "Stop Bugging Me I'm busy" headphones, including myself.
Joshua Rodgers

It's actually pretty calm and down to earth here. Yeah, the days can get long, but everyone tends to be so eager to be here and get work done that there really aren't problems, EVEN when there's the massive rush to the dinner lines!
David Johnson

On the last day of crunch, things can sometimes show the nature of two weeks of extended hours. We generally hold the big decision-making for the following Monday, after a weekend of rest.
Nate Hawbaker

We're cool cats, not barbarians – for the most part.
Dan Miller

No fights, but the atmosphere is definitely a little more quirky than normal.
Jon Cable

I'VE ONLY SEEN THE ALL CAPS, BOLD, HUGE FONT VERSION OF YELLING FITS.
Brandi House

Patience can be limited, but crunch evenings can be quite jovial.
Luke Ledwich

With our carefully planned crunch schedule, morale tends to be high and tension runs low. Halo 2 was pretty rough, but most of our crunches since then have been a lot better.
Michael Williams

In all seriousness, people are supremely respectful to their coworkers around the studio. I've never seen an altercation, and rarely any harsh words spoken even in heated disagreement. We all need each other, after all.
Ben Wommack


SN068237264910 As a future Animator, what are a few things I should know/do in order to Conquer Animating?

Love your designers.
Dan Miller

Know that it is incredibly hard to find footage of bunnies running that don't end tragically for the bunny. You must harden your heart and have an iron stomach.
Michael Williams

Don't let the computer animate for you; it's a terrible assistant. Set a lot of keys and don't be precious with your ideas (try stuff quickly and throw it out if it's not working). Focus on the fundamentals of good animation (read The Illusion of Life for starters) and observe from life, not animated films. Find talented people and ask for their feedback, and listen to their ideas. And don't get obsessed with polish. What you're communicating, the idea itself, is more important.
Jim Levasseur

Looking good wearing a body suit covered in ping pong balls couldn't hurt.
Ben Wommack


PVSpartanL36 For those on the Bungie team with kids, how do they feel about having a Bungie employee as a parent?

My second-grader thinks it's cool, but since I don't let him play (or even really see) the M-rated games I make, he doesn't have the same appreciation that his classmates do. It must hurt to have your son call someone else "the coolest dad".
Derek Carroll

My Corgi thinks it's so cool. She brags about it to all of her friends.
Nate Hawbaker

My six year old loves coming to the studio and "seeing daddy's secret projects."
Dan Miller

Most weekends (and often during the week) my young kids ask if they can come to Bungie. On those special days where the answer is "yes", they race through the office, visiting each of their favorite corners (the game room, the comfy chairs, their favorite conference rooms, my desk). They barely know what computer games are, and they still love this place.
Tom Sanocki

My daughter is 20 months. Here's what she told my wife yesterday: "Daddy at work. They playing bideo games."
Scott Taylor

My kids love it. Our family pretty much plays everything but instead of the kids bugging us grownups for the next big thing, usually I beat them to it and bring stuff home.
Steve Lopez

Most of my kids are all "yeah, whatever" about it. However, when I go to high school functions, some of their friends and classmates totally brownnose me. It's pretty comical.
David Candland


xgeua What's the workload and stress at Bungie like compared to high school and university?

The transition from the academic world to the working world is a harsh one. You have less pick-up time to do your hobbies, but it's more concentrated free time (you don't have to take your work home). The demands are much higher, but the freedom outside of work is greater too.
David Johnson

It's difficult to compare those two things. The stress during school was for disposable goals. Every day, decisions are made in this studio that will affect our work for a long time. This makes it very easy to get excited about doing your absolute best. The most common fear would be letting down your colleagues.
Nate Hawbaker

I liken crunch to something very similar to end-of-quarter/semester exam prep. Except with more at stake.
Dan Miller

Workload: less. You don't have to do papers, problem sets, and programming assignments all weekend every weekend when you have a job!
Stress: depends. Usually less, but when it's make-or-break time, you don't have the option of bailing and settling for a bad grade -- people are depending on you.
Tom Sanocki

It feels a bit like my last year of college. But you only have one class, it's several years long, you have hundreds of teammates, and we are all the professor.
Jon Cable

For me it is similar. It’s a lot of challenging work that is hard to leave alone even once you go home. It’s a lot easier to stay motivated though with a solid team working in the same direction.
Luke Ledwich

It's probably comparable, but the important thing is that even the crummy, boring parts don't really feel like work. Also, it's tough to have homework when you literally are not allowed to take work outside of the studio. You know, flesh-eating NDAs and all that.
Joey Gibbs

I'd say the workload is bigger, but the stress is countered by the fun of the work. It is a great feeling to be excited to do your job every day.
Michael Williams

There is way more stress and way more time spent, but it all feels less tough than school was. The big difference, of course, is that I really enjoy all the work and effort Bungie demands of me. In school, it was easy to lose motivation.
Ben Wommack

Depends on where we are in the schedule. Some times are definitely similar to the sleep deprivation I encountered during finals week. Other times are super inspiring. Welcome to the real world.
Steve Lopez


Kvaener If you could go back in time and tell your 16 year-old self one thing, what would it be?

I would tell 16 year-old DeeJ to look both ways before he went diving into traffic. When I first learned to drive, perhaps as training to be a terror at the controls of a Warthog, I was a little reckless behind the wheel. This resulted in some collisions that earned me the nickname “Crash” at the dinner table. Perhaps our Bungie Panel has some more profound life lessons to send back through time.

"Things won't work out the way you planned, but they'll be pretty awesome." Either that, or "Buy Apple stock." My 16-year-old self wouldn't listen, though.
Derek Carroll

“People may think you're a nerd and totally unpopular now, but just wait 15 years; you'll be the envy of your classmates.”
David Johnson

“Take advantage of every opportunity anyone gives you.”
John Stvan

“Don't put that there.”
Nate Hawbaker

"You won't believe what you will be doing when you get older."
Dan Miller

"Try harder! Write more video games! Make them more fun!"
Tom Sanocki

"Video games are not soul-leeching man-absorbing manifestations of evil... well, at least not exclusively. There's some good in them too. Somewhere. Hand-eye coordination or something."
Brandi House

"No good will come of tequila."
Luke Ledwich

"It's time you started your training in the ways of the ninja assassin."
Joey Gibbs

"The further you go, the more people of like interests you will find. Keep a good attitude, and work hard, and things will always be ok. Also, here's some lotto numbers and stock tips."
Michael Williams

"Work harder. Don't slack off. Don't worry so much about girls; you're overcomplicating things. Try to intern at Facebook when it starts existing. Oh, and don't buy that Gamecube at launch--get the Xbox instead."
Ben Wommack

Buy stock in Apple, Microsoft, and Google.
Steve Lopez

Stay away from Melody. Dat girl crazy.
David Candland


Wikked Navajoe How do you control your anger?

I pack it up into a tight little ball inside me.
Joshua Rodgers

Type up an honest email response and then promptly delete it.
Dan Miller

I don't.

John Stvan

Go for a good run around.
Luke Ledwich

If I get really worked up over something I go to the gym and lift heavy things until my head clears.
Joey Gibbs

It's important to remember that our brains sometimes like to make us angry just for the rush of adrenaline it gives us. When I find myself getting angry, I take a step back and think about why I am thinking that way and try to see it from another perspective. Most problems are solved much better with a cool head and an open heart.
Michael Williams

I work out. Sublimate that rage, sublimate it!
Ben Wommack

Recognize what your anger is: it's how your mind has been conditioned to respond to what you experience. You have learned to be angry in response to certain things. Anger isn't forced on you. It is a creation of your own mind. It is an addictive mental poison that ruins and shortens your life. It has no upsides. Cold blooded determination beats anger every time. Understanding that anger is just an addictive response, and nothing noble or useful, you can unlearn those responses.
Tyson Green


mini0013xx What was your job before you joined Bungie?

I was at Zipper Interactive making different video games up until the studio shut down.
David Johnson

I sold cell phones in Chicago for about 8 years.
John Stvan

Testing at Nintendo. Yes, our building was architecturally designed to look like Block Fort from Mario Kart 64.
Nate Hawbaker

Making animated family films, nearly every one of which had something horrible and terrifying happen in the first sequence.
Tom Sanocki

I was a lifeguard.
Jon Cable

Freelance couch potato. Before that, Microsoft developer.
Luke Ledwich

Not Batman, for reasons previously enumerated.
Joey Gibbs

Game tester for Microsoft Game Studios.
Michael Williams

I wrote and did audio design for a bunch of Scene It? games. My work at Bungie doesn't involve as much movie trivia.
Scott Taylor

I sorted recycling for my school. It was pretty gross.
Ben Wommack


snipe champpppp What is the single most useful piece of information anyone has ever shared with you?

Be kind to others and don't burn bridges, even if you don't necessarily like that somebody else. Even if nothing ever comes out of it, being kind is its own reward.
David Johnson

If you're coasting, you're going downhill.
John Stvan

Don’t take refuge in the false security of consensus and the feeling that whatever you think, you’re bound to be OK, because you’re in the safely moral majority.
Nate Hawbaker as Christopher Hitchens

Always be closing.
Dan Miller as Alec Baldwin

The truth is not in the middle, and not in one extreme; but in both extremes.
Tom Sanocki as Charles Simeon

Connections are super important in your career, but as soon as you start seeing people as just a connection, you'll lose them.
Brandi House

Have you tried coffee?
Luke Ledwich as Juan Valdez

Go with the flow - avoid setting yourself against the world.
Joey Gibbs

If you try to view people in the best possible light and treat them accordingly, more often than not they will respond by living up to that expectation.
Michael Williams as his grandfather

Being ignorant of something is not a shameful thing. Asking questions about something you don't know is a fantastic character trait to develop.
Ben Wommack

Until you have children, you don’t know half of what you think you know.
Steve Lopez as an old neighbor


Duardo What would you say is the most difficult part of your job?

Trying to make sure nothing falls through the cracks.
Joshua Rodgers

As a programmer, it's so easy to want to do EVERYTHING. It's a necessary skill to prioritize what's important. There's an infinite amount of work that's waiting to be done, but not all of it is equally important.
David Johnson

The boss battles.
John Stvan

Rolling out a workflow change to our toolset when you have 200 people as your customers. If you move something 50 pixels, you will hear about it within minutes.
Nate Hawbaker

Closing.
Dan Miller

Fighting with Father Time. That guy's tough.
Tom Sanocki

Not being able to share all the cool stuff we're making.
Jon Cable

To stop adding features and deliver the product.
Luke Ledwich

Designing systems to sustain the kind of load you crazy people tend to put on our servers.
Michael Williams

Trying to stay an expert on everything all at once.
Ben Wommack

Encouraging security in a large group of creative people.
Steve Lopez


mk LITE Are you ever afraid to open the Mail Sack and see what the community has in store for you?

Certainly not! I am a man without fear. Not only is the Mail Sack a great way to know what all of you are thinking about, it’s my chance to mine my coworkers for old stories and nuggets of wisdom. Enabling this conversation is the highlight of my week. Fortunately, it takes all week to do.

We will do this all over again next week. There is still a lot to talk about, so long as you all remain curious about what happens within these walls. While we might be silent about the “what” or the “when” of our next game, but I can still let you in on the “who” and the “why.”

And, let's not forget that Bungie Day Is Coming.
New Beginnings 

Posted by DeeJ at 1/31/2013 11:45 AM PST

Bungie.net has evolved...

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Tags: Community

   

Bungie.net Set to Read-Only Today 

Posted by DeeJ at 1/8/2013 9:07 AM PST

Pardon our dust...

On Tuesday, January 8th, Bungie.net will be set to read-only mode. During this short, preparatory maintenance window, you can browse, but you can’t post. We expect the outage to be brief.

Thank you for your patience. If we don’t make it back, tell your mother we love her. See you on the other side.

Tags: Community

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Happy Holidays. Love, Bungie. 

Posted by DeeJ at 12/21/2012 2:22 PM PST

Peace on Earth?

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Tags: Community

   

We Wish You a Merry Mail Sack 

Posted by DeeJ at 12/21/2012 2:21 PM PST

Goodwill towards mail...



It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas at Bungie. Our cavernous hideout, usually overrun by artists, coders, and designers, is slowly becoming a place of empty chairs and empty tables. Before our beloved partners in crime could flee the scene in favor of their respective family reunions, we gathered around the very last bundle of community interaction that will be seen this calendar year.

The past twelve months have been home to fascinating developments at Bungie. We are thankful. We’ve marched ever closer toward our fate. There is brilliant light at the end of the tunnel, dear community.

But that is a glorious conversation best saved for another time. For now, let’s look back instead of forward.

Let’s open the Sack.


Frag Ingot What do you consider to be your greatest accomplishment from this year?

I made it through...

Ben Thompson, Engineer

I wrote lots of cool things for Bungie.next. Maybe DeeJ will tell you more about that soon.
Tom Gioconda, Engineer

I started building a spaceship in my garage, entirely out of spare lawnmower parts.
Dave Mongan, Senior Writer

Deadlift: 325lbs., Squat: 225lbs, Machine Squat: 360lbs. Also, wrote/recorded 13 songs and remixed 2 songs.
Forrest Soderlind, Technical Artist

Professionally, I built a new back end system that (if it works correctly) will make the online experience better for a significant portion of our playerbase, without them ever knowing it is there. Personally, I went on some awesome adventures with my wife this year and didn't get us both killed, or too horribly lost.
Michael Williams, Engineer

Marriage!
Robert Kehoe, BVT Tester

Creating the next generation of the internal tools for Bungie.Next. They ain’t pretty, but they get the job done.
Alex Loret de Mola, Engineer

And, the following people on the Bungie Panel for this week counted their great fortune in landing a place on the roster of Team Bungie. This delegation represents only a fraction of the parade of noobs that stormed our front door to help us bring you a new game.
Will Edgette, Engineer
Leland Dantzler, Tester
Doug Juno, Artist
Drew Smith, Producer
David Johnson, Engineer
Mike Shannon, Senior IT Engineer
Chris Owens, Test Engineer
Andy Howell, Matchmaking Test Lead


Hylebos How is the Pentathlon shaping up?

As someone who has been honored with an invitation to serve on the Exalted Winter Pentathlon Committee, I'm one of the few people who can tell you that it’s shaping up quite nicely. Our competitors have been partitioned into four warring schools, with Captains assigned to lead each. Events have been chosen, with lieutenants designated to lead each school’s respective charge, and commissioners in place to enforce the rules of battle. As the games draw near, we'll treat you to the usual front-row seat, though I suspect the game I'm most anxious to play this year will be zealously guarded from your eyes.


Elem3nt 117 What is your New Year's Resolution?

I resolve to be a little bit more open and transparent with you. If that has you excited, please note that my track record for keeping these annual promises is less than impressive. Let’s see if my co-developers are more or less disciplined. What do you have planned for yourselves in 2013, Bungie Panel?

Decimate the competition in the Pentathlon or die trying.
Drew Smith, Producer

Draw more.
Doug Juno, Artist

Finish building that spaceship in my garage! Or, give up the ridiculous idea already and waste my free time more wisely.
Dave Mongan, Senior Writer

To get up earlier!
Andy Howell, Matchmaking Test Lead

Deadlift: 495lbs., Squat: 405lbs, Bench 250lbs.
Forrest Soderlind, Technical Artist

Write a book, plant a tree. I can already imagine blank pages and a bare yard.
Christian Diefenbach, Engineering Lead

Don’t get suckered into anymore of those crazy “End of the world” doomsday prophesies.
Ben Thompson, Engineer

Create more, consume less.
Michael Williams, Engineer

To finally fulfill my resolutions from the last 8 years.
Mike Shannon, Senior IT Engineer

I resolve to be better, stronger, faster.
Chris Owens, Test Engineer

To not make any more New Year’s Resolutions.
Alex Loret de Mola, Engineer

Be less tempted by Bungie’s free snacks. Who am I kidding?
Leland Dantzler, Tester


Ninja Blue Wolf Does Marty do lessons?

You mean music lessons? No. Marty does teach us a lesson from time to time, but they are more in the vein of knowing when to hold ‘em – and when to fold ‘em. If you don’t get the reference, that’s an old song about Poker, written by a gambling purveyor of Fried Chicken.


WestCoastRonin If you could remake any Christmas movie and give it a sci-fi setting, which movie would you choose and what would it be like?

I’m pitching a starside reboot of A Christmas Story. My hero, Ralphie_9.6, is an astroclone incepted on an off-world colony who dreams of owning a Red Ryder x-ray cannon. As part of his coming of age, he learns to face off against the Academy’s most dreaded bully. Comic relief ensues when he tricks his best friend into sticking his tongue to the cooling towers of the main reactor. For the grand finale, a hoard of feral tusk-wolves make off with the sandtrout that was prepared for the solstice feast of the seventh moon.

The joy of editing this feature is the chance to hoard the best and most obvious answer for one’s self. However, in the event that Hollywood rejects my screenplay, here are some alternatives from the Bungie Panel…

If you ask me, Rocky 4 is begging for a sci-fi remake. It’s got it all: Good versus evil; hi-tech versus old-school; national pride versus personal determination. Everything is on the line, and it all comes to a head on Christmas Day. Simply set it in an interstellar society, with humans versus aliens and… Ba-da-bing ba-da-boom! Instant, updated holiday classic.
Dave Mongan, Senior Writer

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is a cyborg sent back through time to Santa’s workshop (circa 1995) to protect Santa Claus. Sam the Snowborg is on a mission to kill him and alter the future so that Snowborgs rule over all mankind – and Christmas is permanently destroyed. To save the day, Santa and Rudolph must go to the Isle of Misfit Toys Asylum to rescue Mrs. Claus, who was arrested after encountering Rudolph in the prequel.
David Johnson, Engineer

It’s a Wonderful Star Trek Life. I know they kind of already did it in TNG. I guess I just want Star Trek for Christmas.
Andy Howell, Matchmaking Test Lead

As Life Day approaches on Tatooine, Emmet Otter and his Ma decide to compete in the Cantina's talent contest. Watch as they face corrupt Hutt judges, and challenge the Empire's most deadly musicians, "The Boba Fett Sarlacc Band". In the end they will learn the true meaning of Life Day, and the true power of the Force.
Michael Williams, Engineer

Mine is more based on a TV show than a movie. Theorizing that one could time travel within his own lifetime, Doctor Sam Beckett stepped into the Quantum Leap accelerator - and vanished. He awoke to find himself trapped in the past, facing mirror images that looked a lot like Santa, and driven by an unknown force to change Christmas for the better. His only guide on this journey is ELF, an observer from his own time, who appears in the form of a hologram that only Sam can see and hear. And so, Doctor Beckett finds himself leaping from life to life, striving to replace bad presents with amazing presents and hoping each time that his next leap… will be the leap home.
Chris Owens, Test Engineer

I have a visual of people opening their Christmas presents to find face hugger aliens inside.
Robert Kehoe, BVT Tester

The first two Die Hard movies could be convincingly set on an inter-planetary colony and a spaceport, respectively. The plot of the second movie even becomes more much plausible in a spaceport.
Tom Gioconda, Engineer

White Christmas. It’s the year 2196, and Lt. Commander Wallace is performing a holiday space symphony for our troops fighting against the mysterious arachnid alien species that has invaded our solar system. He finds himself caught in a web, and about to be eaten by said aliens, before Ensign Davis runs over in the nick of time and saves his life. Their friendship comes to a head years later when their old Fleet Admiral is discovered running a failed tourist vessel orbiting Jupiter. They decide to bring their interstellar cast and crew to revive his chances of success. The plot really doesn’t have to change much at all! I suppose one of their love interests could get vaporized by a stray phaser blast as they defend the tourist ship from space raiders.
Alex Loret de Mola, Engineer

Yeah, Alex. Because nothing gets people in the Christmas spirit faster than vaporizing love interests.


irishfreak Why won't you return my calls?

Mostly because, for the first time in the years (and years) since I left college and joined The Work Force, I don’t have a phone on my desk. That took some getting used to. I remember asking about this on my first day at Bungie. Urk answered my question with a question of his own. “Who would you call?” That stopped me in my tracks. Hello, Internet? It’s me, DeeJ.


EZcompany2ndsqd If Santa came down your chimney and you were awake what would you do?

I’d handcuff him to the gas starter, light a candle, and have a long chat about all those years I got ugly sweaters instead of the video games that had been released that season. Perhaps the Bungie Panel will be more forgiving than I…

See if he wanted to play some Farcry 3 coop.
Drew Smith, Producer

I would thank him for giving me a brand new fireplace.
David Johnson, Engineer

Offer him a drink.
Doug Juno, Artist

Release the Krampus!
Forrest Soderlind, Technical Artist

Demand gifts as payment for intrusion.
Leland Dantzler, Tester

We would then engage in mortal combat - Bungie wood n00b sword vs. Santa Sack. Spoiler: Christmas would lose.
Andy Howell, Matchmaking Test Lead

Borrow his ride!
Christian Diefenbach, Engineering Lead

Ask if he had a couple hours to babysit.
Ben Thompson, Engineer

Wager my soul against a golden fiddle in a Settler's of Catan match. Santa does that right?
Michael Williams, Engineer

Scream like a little girl and run around in circles until the bad man left. Sadly, that’s how I deal with most situations.
Chris Owens, Test Engineer

Offer the man some milk and cookies for installing a chimney in my apartment.
Will Edgette, Engineer

Probably offer him a beer. Cookies and milk probably get old.
Tom Gioconda, Engineer


DarthCarrick If you could give the Community a present, what would it be?

An exciting new place to call home. Since such things cannot be wrapped, that gift will have to serve another occasion.


Xd00999 You can now un-cancel one television show. What do you choose?

When I do make it to my television, I’m more than likely using it to battle the Internet though the construct of my favorite game. Thus, I am transferring my vote to the Bungie Panel. Have at it, people. What do you wish was still on the idiot box?

I used to work in TV, so that’s like asking me to resurrect only one of my deceased friends. Too cruel. Instead, I’ll bring to life a baby that was never born: a pilot I wrote called “The War.” Imagine the grittiness of “The Wire,” set on the coke-frenzied Sunset Strip of the 1980s. It was an intense roller-coaster ride of sex & drugs & rock-n-roll… or at least it would have been, had it ever seen the light of day. Oh well…
Dave Mongan, Senior Writer

I’d pick one of the following:

Ben Thompson, Engineer

Bring back Firefly!
David Johnson, Engineer

Firefly, Duh. (Says the Star Trek fan… I know.. I know..)
Andy Howell, Matchmaking Test Lead

Firefly.
Will Edgette, Engineer

Can I choose two? 1) Firefly 2) Farscape.
Christian Diefenbach, Engineering Lead

Firefly.
Michael Williams, Engineer

I’m sure this is the first time someone mentioned this show, but Firefly.
Chris Owens, Test Engineer

Answers other than Firefly are wrong.
Tom Gioconda, Engineer

Wonderfalls!
Alex Loret de Mola, Engineer

Better Off Ted.
Leland Dantzler, Tester

Carnivale on HBO.
Doug Juno, Artist

Arrested Development.
Drew Smith, Producer

Deadwood, so I can open a can of peaches.
Forrest Soderlind, Technical Artist


A Pimpin Lady Why will you not answer my question? I want to know where Bungie hires their non-gaming personnel. Last time I asked this question, you sent me to the job listings page on B.Net. In all my years here, I have never seen non-gaming related listings. I know you guys have to have accountants, HR, health educators, etc. Will you please tell me where the job listings for these people are found?

“Ma’am! I answered your question! I answered the darn... I’m cooperating here!” -Jerry Lundegaard, Executive Sales Manager, Gustafson Motors

It’s almost as if our whole team is devoted to the singular cause of making a game. We do have a few people at Bungie who mind the shop while we make the toys. In all your years here, none of them have quit. They really like their jobs. We see to that, personally. If we end up needing more of them, the curious onlookers who pay attention to our Careers page will be the first to know.


Marcellos007 What was the funniest present you´ve got for Christmas?

My father and my sister succumbed to the allure of a home shopping offering on television. One toll-free conversation later, our entire family received the gift of decorative swords. Mine was so decorative, the blade folded under the weight of its own haft when I sank it into the soil of the back yard in a dramatic reenactment of the ending to my favorite Scottish revolution film. Care to recall your own comedic lumps of coal, Bungie Panel?

My dad used to rewrap the board game Balderdash every year and give it to a random member of the family. That was always funny. Plus, it’s a good game.
Drew Smith, Producer

Many years ago, a boss of mine gave me the menu for an adult-entertainment venue called The Chicken Ranch. I never visited the establishment, but I got a lot of laughs out of reading the names of their various “Dishes.”
Dave Mongan, Senior Writer

One year, my friends thought it would be a good idea to all get me Hello Kitty themed gifts, including bubble bath that came packaged with warnings about urinary tract infections. Also included was a lantern that had a warning to “not look directly at.” So, all of the Hello Kitty gifts where deadly in one way or another. But really, isn’t anything to do with Hello Kitty?
Andy Howell, Matchmaking Test Lead

Our family has had a habit of wrapping gifts in bizarre ways. I've seen bizarre polyhedral shapes, boxes nested in boxes, and gifts wrapped in twine that has been spliced so there was no end to untie.
Michael Williams, Engineer

A 20 pound wheel of cheese (I used to be a much larger man who loved his cheese).
Chris Owens, Test Engineer

A Rubik’s Cube shaped like Homer Simpson.
Alex Loret de Mola, Engineer

My dad gave me Heretic: Shadow of the Serpent Riders. I was 8 and my mom was furious. Dad and I played the heck out of it, though.
Leland Dantzler, Tester


Halo biggest fan For all the artists at Bungie: Do any of you frequently go to figure drawing sessions to stay sharp on your traditional drawing skills?

Is this really a question about art? Or, is it more a question about naked people in our studio?


CoRaMo Where is the strangest place you have ever played a video game?

Like so many of you, I was waiting anxiously on the sidelines while Halo: ODST was preparing to drop. Through some magic wielded by the Hand of Urk, I vaulted to the front of a very long line and was the first kid in my zip code to play Firefight in the belly of a military transport vehicle. Moral to the story: Always be nice to your Community Manager. Beat that, Bungie Panel!

The Experience Music Project in Seattle during the Halo 2 launch party. The science fiction museum had only recently gone into the building, and the whole experience was pretty surreal and awesome.
Michael Williams, Engineer

At the Podiatrist, while I was having an ingrown toenail removed. I needed a distraction.
Andy Howell, Matchmaking Test Lead

You mean like the backseat of a Volkswagen?
Mike Shannon, Senior IT Engineer

Backseat of a Volkswagen.
Robert Kehoe, BVT Tester

I played Inception – The App while I was in Erfoud, Morocco just to unlock the Africa chapter. My wife rolled her eyes, but the camels didn’t seem to mind.
Forrest Soderlind, Technical Artist

On the set of a movie.
Chris Owens, Test Engineer

In a van heading across the country to get to PAX – part of a caravan called the Cross Country Super Trip. We wired it up to a TV that was fixed into the ceiling, and played it on our two day long trek.
Alex Loret de Mola, Engineer

I played Pokemon Silver in an unmarked van, in Ireland, stuck at a sheep crossing while thousands of fluffy things crossed the road for more than 15 minutes (true story).
Leland Dantzler, Tester

Do iPhone games on the porcelain throne count?
Dave Mongan, Senior Writer

To most of you, playing in an arcade is probably pretty strange. More people play video games on the toilet via their phones than play in arcades now.
Tom Gioconda, Engineer

With gaming on cell phones, it doesn’t get much more strange than gaming in a public restroom. I’m... not the only one that does that, right?
David Johnson, Engineer

Some of you are sick. Suddenly, that line that forms outside the Bungie men’s room is much less a mystery. Pull your pants up and get back to work. You can launch birds out of slingshots on your own time.


coolmike699 Does Bungie do a secret Santa? Has anyone gotten anything really weird?

Our Secret Santas give presents to the people who need them the most. This year, our tree was decorated with dreams passed along to us from our friends at the Make-A-Wish Foundation. We love making dreams come true at Bungie – the weirder the better.




Duardo What was the best gift ever given to you?

I have everything I want in life: a gaming console, a patient wife who lets me spend a lot of time with it, and a clan of willing killers to carry me to victory. Bungie Panel, can you do a better job of celebrating the spirit of giving?

Not to get all sappy, but a couple years back, my wife gave me a pretty non-traditional Christmas present: a pregnancy test that read positive. Now, a few years earlier I would’ve freaked out; but timing is everything, and instead I was super excited to know we were expecting a little gamer of our own.
Dave Mongan, Senior Writer

The generosity of my friends. I can be demanding and a bit eccentric/neurotic, but they are all super accommodating.
Drew Smith, Producer

My life, by my mom and dad. (I know, suck up...)
Andy Howell, Matchmaking Test Lead

My first thought was to say “my daughters.” Then, I realized they’re more like Trojans taking over my world: making me work harder to get them the best life I can, eating away at my idle time with child’s play and E rated games, pushing me to better myself and… Yeah, my daughters.
Christian Diefenbach, Engineering Lead

My family once commissioned a custom art piece from one of my favorite artists based on a fictional character of mine. The effort and subtlety needed to gather the information for the commission was as precious as the artwork itself.
Michael Williams, Engineer


Mike Shannon, Senior IT Engineer

The gift of laughter! Yeah, right! That’d be my original 8-bit NES with the Gold Zelda Cart.
Chris Owens, Test Engineer

My wife built me a cabinet with a mini-fridge, snack drawer, and movie theater style popcorn popper for my home theater room was pretty damned impressive last year.
Tom Gioconda, Engineer

The gift of life! Hahaha, no. In all seriousness, the Nintendo Entertainment System. It was the beginning of what got me here today.
Robert Kehoe, BVT Tester

Being able to work at Bungie.
Alex Loret de Mola, Engineer

Dethklok: Dethalbum II on vinyl.
Forrest Soderlind: Technical Artist


Will Edgette, Engineer

Hope.
Leland Dantzler, Tester


spartain ken 15 Do you guys ever think you would sell some Bungie-themed Christmas cards?

If you refresh the front page of our website, you can have one for free. There ain’t any cash in it, but it’s still a sincere expression of our love and devotion. Of all the gifts that we’re to receive in the coming days, very few will make us as happy as your unshakable friendship.

And, thus, the Sack is empty. With its closure, we bring to an end another year of community love. This next year promises to be a more exciting one. Between now and then, do take care of yourselves. May your travels by safe, and your holiday loot plentiful.

To all a good night.

Tags: Community

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Friendship of Mythic Proportions 

Posted by DeeJ at 12/20/2012 4:21 PM PST

Lean on me...

The Bungie Community is constantly astounding us with their creativity, and their solidarity. Recently, some ancients (who were playing Bungie games before some of their contemporaries were born) banded together to produce a piece of art that would steady a friend in need as he took steps toward a new challenge. Behold the intersection between passion for games and compassion for one's fellow gamer.

Miguel writes: Folks, here's a link to the whole Soulblighter Sword Cane saga, how it came to be, why we did it, etc. It all started back at the tail end of August (right before PAX Prime!) and is finally done now. The man has his uber-cane! Thanks of course to all of you for creating a wonderful environment for us to form such lasting friendships. Man, are we getting old.



 Cheers to the big hearts at Bungie.org.  

Tags: Community

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