Mail Sack. In SPACE!
Posted by DeeJ at 8/10/2012 11:04 AM PDT


It’s been an exciting week for lovers of science fiction – which we totally are at Bungie. Sometimes truth is even stranger than fiction, like when a band of scientists use a flying saucer to park a car on another planet. Curiosity Fever has gripped many an imagination in our studio. As a break in that action, we are obeying the usual ritual of addressing your curiosities – the ones that you so lovingly deposit on our forum every week.

Here are your arm-chair star-gazers…

Derek Carroll, Designer
Andrew Davis, Artist
Joey Gibbs, Production Assistant
Nate Hawbaker, Technical Artist
Scott Kankelborg, Test Engineer
Alex Loret de Mola, Engineer
Dave Mongan, Writer
Tom Slattery, Content Manager
Alan Stuart, Engineer
John Stvan, Graphic Designer
Scott Taylor, Producer
Michael Williams, Engineer
Ben Wommack, Production Engineer

We are now in orbit around Bungie.net. Let’s open the Sack.


MiloOmega First!!!!

You’ll regret that.


OIO CABOOSE OIO What did you guys think of the Curiosity Landing on Mars?

I have this recurring dream about journeying to Mars in which I become the hero of a colonial community of mutants by defying an oppressive regime and activating an ancient alien relic that ends up producing a breathable atmosphere. It’s exciting that we might actually get the chance to do that someday. I am sure the Bungie Panel has some less delusional thoughts…



People here were jealous – some folks in the studio would trade everything for a chance to go to Mars!
Ben Wommack

You can't prove I cried.
John Stvan

Go humanity!
Alex Loret de Mola

What a great opportunity for the country to, if only briefly, become once again enamored with the sciences.
Nate Hawbaker

How ironic it would be if it turned out it had landed on a Martian cat.
Tom Slattery

I am astounded by humanity's creativity and engineering prowess. I can't wait to see what we do next.
Michael Williams

Per audacia ad astra.
Alan Stuart

I found it bittersweet. I see the amazing things humanity can achieve, yet we spend so little money on it, compared to the ugly things humanity does.
Andrew Davis

Oh come on now, Andrew. Don’t be so cynical. Just think of how amazing “The Real Housewives of Mars” will be.


triggerhappy964 Will you answer this question without the use of sarcasm?

Nope. When you try to part us with our sarcasm, we get really defensive. It’s like trying to snatch a blanket from the hands of a child that is not ready to let go. To make this abundantly clear, I won’t answer this next question sincerely either…


AxJARxOFxDIRT This is a question for Mr. Martin O'Donnell (but I guess you can answer it). Besides the piano, what is your favorite instrument?

Marty is busy, so I got this. I find the Altimeter and the Geiger Counter to be pretty useful instruments.

Okay, okay… Marty told me that he likes the Cello, too. But only second to the Piano!


spawn031 As we made history this week during the Mars Curiosity Landing, we learned that the guys over at NASA have a tradition of eating peanuts for good luck. When Bungie Employees are crunching at work and need some good luck, what do you guys eat?

I don’t eat for luck. I do often wear my “Bungie, fix your –blam-” t-shirt when in bug crunching mode. More for irony than luck though.
Andrew Davis

Brotein bars. Also brotein shakes and egg white bromlettes.
Joey Gibbs

NASA engineers. You may claim it’s a silly superstition, but it works!
Derek Carroll

Fried chicken and red vines. Just kidding! That's our normal crunch fair. People chug the Red Bull pretty regularly during long hours, but I don't think that has anything to do with good luck – more like desperation.
Ben Wommack

It used to be Swedish Fish, until I looked at the back of the package and saw they were actually made in Canada. It felt like my entire life had been a lie.
Tom Slattery

Meat. In the kitchen we literally have a cabinet labeled "Meat" that is magically refilled every morning.
Alan Stuart

Soylent Green!
Alex Loret de Mola

That’s gross, Alex. Don’t you know it’s made out of people?


Kage24Neko Do the B.Net team feel like bees in a trap?

What exactly are you asking here? If you are asking if the Bungie.net Developers feel imprisoned by their work, the answer is “No, certainly not!” They love what they do. If you are asking if they are slicked in a delicious sheen of honey, the answer is “Most definitely!”


TheSpiderChief What is the longest amount of time you have spent awake whilst making games?

Exactly equal to the time it’s taken to make all the games I’ve made. (Or did you mean consecutively?)
Andrew Davis

I believe around 30 hours was my maximum, back during Halo 2.
Michael Williams

25 hours, back during Halo 3. Though this last year has challenged that record a couple times.
Ben Wommack

I remember being awake for 3 days during Reach.
John Stvan

I stayed up for over 48 hours during the crunch for MechAssault. I went to bed when I started hallucinating smoke filling the room.
Derek Carroll

While working on another game before coming to Bungie, I spent a solid six months with less than three hours of sleep each night (other than the occasional Saturday where I'd crash hard and literally sleep through the entire day). Kids, don't try this at home.
Alex Loret de Mola


MiloOmega Where do you get most of your ideas for your story? “Your Mom” is not an acceptable answer.

You again? Remember when I promised that you would regret being First? Skank, he’s all yours…

“Your Mom!”
Scott Kankelborg


a rascal cat Who is the funniest employee?

Travis Pijut. He’s the silent killer.
Joey Gibbs

DeeJ is by far the funniest looking.
Nate Hawbaker

While Bungie still worked at Microsoft, Mat Noguchi was kicked off the internal "Xbox Discussion Alias" for a multitude of policy infractions. I think Mat is hilarious.
Alan Stuart

Luke Timmins without a doubt. Sorry DeeJ. You're a Fun Guy, but no one tops the Sausage King.
Ben Wommack

Achronos cracks me up. He's so amusingly bitter! (Please don't hurt/ban/fire me Achronos!)
Alex Loret de Mola

On a given day many fellow employees will make me laugh, but the one of the most consistently successful for me is Mr. Rajeev Nattam.
Michael Williams


Stormkiller626 Why do you guys never answer my questions? Seriously, I think this is rigged...

You really don't want to treat the Mail Sack like an election or a popularity contest. We ain’t choosing a Prom King here. This is our chance to keep in touch as we fumble toward each other through the darkness. The best questions are ones that provoke sparkling conversation on a topic that doesn’t cut too close to the bones of the game we are creating.


coolmike699 They answer lots of my questions. If it's rigged, I like it this way.

Again, Mike, I’m not playing favorites here. It just so happens that you have a habit of asking cool questions that serve up some red meat for our Panel, like this one:

You're the head coach of a sports team that you have, through montages of training, brought from a fumbling bunch of novices to the state championships. What do you say to motivate these people to victory?



Allow me to fully appreciate the fact that you are measuring the density of training in montages, rather than time. Let's see how our panelists would inspire their minions to greatness.

“No slaughter!”
Andrew Davis

“It's not impossible. I used to bullseye womp rats in my T-16 back home.”
John Stvan

“Free beer if we win.”
Alex Loret de Mola

"Remember, the enemy gate is down."
Michael Williams


Derek Carroll


WestCoastRonin Can I single out Dave Mongan? What book(s) should every writer read?

Paging Dave Mongan. Would Dave Mongan please pick up the nearest Mail Sack courtesy phone?

Dave said: If you are asking what to read to become a better screenwriter, I definitely have a few recommendations. “Story” by Robert McKee gives great insight into the process of crafting compelling characters and tales. It’s not a quick read, but it’s invaluable. “Save The Cat! Goes to the Movies” by Blake Snyder is at the other end of the spectrum – light on theory, but very easy to read and absorb because it breaks down story types using modern-day movies as a reference. Probably the best recommendation I can give, though, is to find screenplays for your favorite movies (either online or in bookstores) and break them down scene-by-scene, act-by-act, character-by-character. Not only will you (hopefully) learn the importance of structure in successful storytelling, you’ll also learn proper screenplay formatting and see how a story translates from the page to the screen, which is oftentimes quite an eye-opening experience.

Of course, if you just want to bend the spine on a great read, that’s another story entirely. I have a few authors from very disparate genres that I particularly dig: Iain M. Banks for sci-fi, Michael Connelly for mystery/thrillers, and of course the horror master himself, Steven King. Oh, and don’t forget comic books. I’m currently loving me some old-school Larry Hama “GI Joe,” and the newest “Dark Knight” series written by friend & former co-worker, Gregg Hurwitz.


Malfar What is one of your most cherished possessions?

My ’09 Sportster 883C. I call her Athena (my first bike was Boomer).
Andrew Davis

My Xbox 360 hard drive. Whenever I go on vacation I stash it somewhere in my apartment so that robbers won’t find it.
Joey Gibbs

A Spanish dollar (piece of eight) dated 1608 gifted to me by my grandfather. The coin is worn extremely thin by the countless hands that have touched it. I often wonder about the people that possessed it before me.
Alan Stuart

My Windows Server 2003 Leatherman pocket tool.
Ben Wommack

My coffee-stained copy of Atlantis by Mark Doty.
Alex Loret de Mola

I've got an intact "casino map" from an amazing puzzle hunt I participated in (my first puzzle hunt ever). Embedded in the map are a huge number of puzzles that eventually convert the thing into a 3-dimensional Indiana Jones style solution reveal.
Michael Williams

My mirror.
John Stvan


R0flc0pt3r What's the worst part about your job?

Facing John “Halcylon” Stvan in a playtest. He’s not bad at the game, and not all shy about reminding you of this fact if he kills you within earshot of your desk.


im am b0red What is the most difficult game you guys have ever played?

I probably only played the most difficult game I ever played for a few minutes, because it was too difficult. Probably some 80’s side-scroller where you have to dodge projectiles. Too hard!
Andrew Davis

The stock market.
Tom Slattery

I WANNA BE THE GUY. They basically threw all of the usability heuristics right out the window.
Joey Gibbs

Sunset Riders. I was also 9. Actually scratch that. After reading others responses, I'd like to revise that to say Trials Evolution.
Nate Hawbaker

First of all, let's invalidate competitive multiplayer. Second, any game which is only difficult because of bugs or poor design. That leaves us with Demon Souls / Dark Souls, and WoW raiding. Heroics are hard.
Ben Wommack

Trials HD.
Alan Stuart

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles for the NES (it was also available on the Amiga, from what I hear). I've actually beaten it fair and square, however. My childhood was sacrificed on its merciless altar for the sake of seeing its crappy 30 second ending.
Alex Loret de Mola

I tried Battletoads once... it did not go well. There was also this one time on Bungie Day when we challenged the community for steaks... it, also, did not go well.
Michael Williams


Sunburned Goose Do other game developers share their games with you before they are finished?

OJ (you remember OJ, don’t you?) made some friends at a development house called Squad. They hooked us up with some codes to play Kerbal Space Program. It’s a space exploration simulator that’s in Alpha right now. You should check it out…



Would you like to play? I can score you a code. If you want to channel your inner rocket scientist, all you have to do is emulate the haircut that has made Bobak Ferdowski (Flight Director of the Mars Curiosity Mission) an Internet sensation.

Seriously. Be one of the first three people to produce a “before and after” comparison photo (both shots taken on the same day), and I’ll get you a code to play the game. I’ll also feature you in the Mail Sack for next week.

(Kids, be sure to get permission from your parent’s before you mutilate their precious image of you. I don't want a flood of angry emails from mothers who are enraged over the fact that their little angel looks like a Mohawk spaceman.)


Mythical Wolf Favorite Olympic sport?

Beach Volleyball.
John Stvan

Archery. An admirable skill, and one of the few featured in the Olympics that would genuinely help in a post-apocalyptic world.
Alex Loret de Mola

10M diving. I used to dive back in high school. Did you know that people have been known to literally break their thumbs on the tops if their heads if they don’t keep their elbows locked on entry? Crazy.
Joey Gibbs

Gymnastics--unbelievably impressive.
Ben Wommack

I’ve been digging the bicycle sports this year. I hadn’t watched track racing, and it’s pretty fun.
Andrew Davis

I actually like curling a lot.
Michael Williams

Triple TiVo Fast-Forward.
Derek Carroll

I like the one where they go fast.
Nate Hawbaker


defnop552 What's the new site update codename?

We've been lovingly referring to it as “Bungie.next.”


CODE OF DEAD If you had three wishes, what would they be?

1. To be good at math.
2. To like math.
3. To have Spider-Man super powers.
Joey Gibbs

1. Infinite wishes.
2. Preview of results of each wish.
3. Unlimited undo.
Derek Carroll

1. World Peace.
2. Interstellar Travel.
3. And to have a live sitcom audience follow me around.
John Stvan

It would go down something like this.
Michael Williams


Hylebos Are there any good webcomics you'd like to recommend?

For the second week in a row, a Bungie Panelist has invoked xkcd to answer your questions. It’s "a webcomic of romance, sarcasm, math, and language" – or so they say. Last week, I didn’t credit them (at least, not until I was corrected by Andrew Davis) for an image I pilfered from their site. This week, I’ll use your question to double-down on the credit they so richly deserve for illustrating the highs and lows of development culture.


MightyMarcher01 What is your favorite video game enemy?

Kefka, Final Fantasy VI. His schizophrenia was palpable.
Alex Loret de Mola

Frankystein Mark II. After beating that boss, it really convinced you of how strong you had become.
Nate Hawbaker

Marines in Starcraft 2, the cursed devils. (I play Zerg)
Ben Wommack

Kefka, but I'm a little biased. (Also my favorite video game character to write dialogue for!)
Tom Slattery

OddJob.
John Stvan

Ragnaros at level 60 with 39 other people working together to bring him down. That was truly epic.
Alan Stuart

The dude who challenges you to a game of "Rock, Paper, Scissors" in order to beat a level in Alex Kidd in Miracle World.
Scott Taylor

GLaDOS. A complex and interesting opponent who is also written brilliantly.
Michael Williams


Ryaanski What would you think if I sang out of tune?

I would stand up, and walk out on you.

Kidding! I kid you. What I would really do is harmonize with you in lovely dulcet tones that would make up the difference. Also, we would need to grow a mop of long hair.

We’ll sing some more of this duet next week. When I saw “we,” I mean Bungie and our Community – you know, the royal we. Keep your eyes trained on our forum Monday for your chance to write your portion of the sheet music.
New Beginnings 

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

Bungie.net has evolved...

Read Full Top Story

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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