Scrapbook Pages 11-12
Posted By: REBDate: 2/28/02 2:30 a.m.

In Response To: Typo! (REB)

Page 11

of a crippled colony ship was deemed more ethically satisfying.

In the final version of the story, the player was a security officer sent on ridding the Marathon of marauding aliens. A story unfolded over the course of the game, revealed bit by bit through a series of computer terminals scattered throughout the maps. Interacting with these terminals fed the player vital (and sometimes not so vital) information from the Marathon's three artificial intelligences: Leela, Durandal, and Thyco. As the player progressed through the levels, it would become obvious that everything was not what it seemed on the good ship Marathon while trying to deal with the thousands of homicidal aliens storming the ship, the player was caught in a struggle for power between three AI's, one of which was certifiably insane.

The story of the game wasn't the only element to undergo numerous revisions. The game's interface went through a number of iterations. Early revisions featured an icon of the player's body that showed where the player had been hit; Marathon's famous motion-sensor evolved out of a much simpler directional aid: a compass.

An early beta version of Marathon leaked onto the Internet in October. Within days the newsgroups exploded with discussion of the beta. Most of the talk centered on the legal issues facing those who distributed the beta and whether or not this leak would hurt Bungie's sales of the final game.

Bungie traced the leak to a temp a a large advertising agency which had received a beta copy in order to take screenshots for an Apple Computer ad. The sudden disappearance of this individual has never conclusively traced to anyone at Bungie.

About a month after the first beta leak, a second Marathon beta appeared on the internet, rife with additional features - including music. Alex had taken a new beta to a software distributor's convention, and one of the attendees was so taken with the game that he broke into a locked storage closet where Alex had secreted his machine, copied the beta and uploaded it to the net. Bungie took steps to track down the perpetrators and heads rolled once again.

While the beta leaks where unprofessional and denied Bungie the right to decide when to release their own game, in retrospect they didn't really do any great harm (except to the two poor suckers who lost their jobs as a result.) Alex Seropian remarked that the real result was probably positive: a lot of potential customers were dying to have a look at Marathon and the betas provided that. The endless discussion of the Marathon betas finally died down on November 23, when Bungie finally released the official demo of the game. But the three short levels of the demo ended far too quickly for most, and people were left to wonder impatiently when the whole thing would be available.

One of Marathon's outstanding features was its network play, which in fact won Marathon a Macworld Game Hall of Fame Award for Best Network Game of 1995. Surprisingly, networking was not part of Marathon's initial design spec but was added a few months into development. Progress on the solo game slowed to a crawl as Bungie spent hours enthusiastically "testing" the network game. Jason Jones later admitted that if they had not all been playing the network game so much Marathon would have shipped a month earlier. Although playing net Marathon caused productivity to plummet, the testing resulted in extensive gameplay tweaking which improved both network and solo play.

Marathon's last polygon was filled at 6:05 PM Saturday, December 14th. Over the previous four days, the Bungie team had slept less than ten hours - their last push after months of 14-hours days. But the game wasn't finished yet: many days of play-testing followed. Reg lived right across the street from Bungie's offices and recalls seeing his girlfriend waving out the window of his loft, "signalling me to come home - or else" on more than one occasion. One evening Jason decreed that

Note: "...Early revisions featured an icon of the player's body..." This icon can be seen on one of Marathon's textures. On Blaspheme Quarantine, in the room labeled Q4 in the overhead map, there's one wall with this texture - it's the only one that's not green.

Page 12 (Pictures)

9 screenshots taken from the Marathon Home Videos - recordings made by Tuncer Deniz during Marathon Development. The Marathon Home Videos can be found on the 1st Trilogy CD/Marathon Extras/Gnop. It's a 192 MB invisible file.

The most revelant picture of this page is the one where Jason Jones holds a plastic tube with the words "The Shaft" (The pfhor fighter weapon) written on it. This was the favorite toy of one of the programmers.

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Pre-2004 Posts


Is the Marathon scrapbook online somewhere?zudo 2/23/02 3:54 p.m.
     Sorry, don't think so. I'd like to see it too. *NM*Callie21V 2/23/02 8:06 p.m.
           Look What The Cat Drug In... (not typo)REB 2/25/02 1:38 a.m.
                 Re: Look What The Cat Drug In... (not typo)Fernando. 2/25/02 1:42 a.m.
                       Re: Look What The Cat Drug In... (not typo)REB 2/25/02 3:04 a.m.
                             Re: Look What The Cat Drug In... (not typo)zudo 2/25/02 3:09 a.m.
                             Re: Look What The Cat Drug In... (not typo)Fernando. 2/25/02 3:46 a.m.
                                   Abandonware?REB 2/25/02 5:24 a.m.
                                         Re: Abandonware?Mark Levin 2/25/02 6:48 a.m.
                                         Re: Abandonware?/hamish please readFernando. 2/25/02 6:49 a.m.
                                               ReadingHamish Sinclair 2/25/02 9:30 a.m.
                                                     Re: ReadingM-Class 2/25/02 3:15 p.m.
                                                           Re: ReadingDjof 2/25/02 5:00 p.m.
                                         Re: Abandonware?Callie21V 2/25/02 9:38 a.m.
                                         Re: Abandonware?M-Class 2/25/02 3:09 p.m.
                                               Re: Abandonware?Vid Boi 2/26/02 2:58 a.m.
                                                     Re: Abandonware?Hamish Sinclair 2/26/02 5:12 a.m.
                                                           Re: Abandonware?Dan Aris 2/26/02 6:06 a.m.
                                                                 Is that soon or Soon™ ?zudo 2/26/02 8:16 a.m.
                                                                 Is that soon or Soon™ ? *NM*zudo 2/26/02 8:16 a.m.
                                                           Oh yea, the action sack...I forgot that one. *NT*Vid Boi 2/26/02 8:29 a.m.
                                         Re: Abandonware?Malcolm 11/6/02 6:37 a.m.
                 Thanks REB! Great work! *NM*Callie21V 2/25/02 9:37 a.m.
                 Scrapbook Pages 3 - 4REB 2/25/02 11:37 p.m.
                       Re: Scrapbook Pages 3 - 4Hamish Sinclair 2/26/02 12:14 a.m.
                             Re: Scrapbook Pages 3 - 4REB 2/26/02 4:20 a.m.
                             Re: Scrapbook Pages 3 - 4Matt 2/26/02 11:09 p.m.
                                   Re: Scrapbook Pages 3 - 4Hamish Sinclair 2/27/02 12:25 a.m.
                                         Bungie Live Up To It's Promise...REB 3/1/02 2:34 a.m.
                                               Re: Bungie Live Up To It's Promise...Hamish Sinclair 3/1/02 12:21 p.m.
                                                     Re: Bungie Live Up To It's Promise...REB 3/3/02 4:30 a.m.
                                                           Re: Bungie Live Up To It's Promise...Matt 3/5/02 5:31 p.m.
                                                                 Re: Bungie Live Up To It's Promise...Hamish Sinclair 3/6/02 12:07 a.m.
                                                                       Re: Bungie Live Up To It's Promise...Matt 3/6/02 12:05 p.m.
                                                                             Re: Bungie Live Up To It's Promise...Hamish Sinclair 3/6/02 1:03 p.m.
                                                                             Re: Bungie Live Up To It's Promise...Speaker-To-Animals 7/3/03 10:09 p.m.
     I would if I had a scanner *NM*Vid Boi 2/24/02 3:38 a.m.
           I'd scan it all but i dont have the scrapbook!Ernie TMBM 2/25/02 6:54 p.m.
                 Re: I'd scan it all but i dont have the scrapbook!Callie21V 2/26/02 2:26 p.m.
     Actually...Hippieman [B.Org] 2/26/02 1:23 p.m.
           Re: Actually...Pedrof 2/26/02 3:37 p.m.
                 Re: Actually... (+Hamish)Djof 2/26/02 5:00 p.m.
                 Re: Actually...Matt 2/26/02 11:07 p.m.
                       Re: Actually...Hippieman [B.Org] 3/1/02 12:09 a.m.
           Re: Actually...archon 2/27/02 12:28 a.m.
                 Re: Actually...Hamish Sinclair 2/27/02 12:40 a.m.
                       Re: Actually...archon 2/27/02 9:18 a.m.
           Scrapbook Pages 9-10REB 2/27/02 5:49 a.m.
                 Typo!REB 2/27/02 5:55 a.m.
                       Scrapbook Pages 11-12REB 2/28/02 2:30 a.m.
                             Scrapbook Pages 13-14REB 3/1/02 4:47 a.m.
                                   Scrapbook Pages 15-16REB 3/2/02 2:41 p.m.
                                         Scrapbook Pages 17-18REB 3/3/02 4:21 p.m.
                                               Scrapbook Pages 19-22REB 3/4/02 9:01 a.m.
                                                     Scrapbook Pages 23-26REB 3/5/02 1:22 p.m.
                                                           I Want My Zombie Pfhor!REB 3/5/02 1:28 p.m.
                                                           Re: I Want My Zombie Pfhor!Callie21V 3/5/02 3:59 p.m.
                                                                 Re: I Want My Zombie Pfhor!Vid Boi 3/5/02 4:49 p.m.
                                                                 Re: I Want My Zombie Pfhor!Djof 3/5/02 5:10 p.m.
                                                                 Re: I Want My Zombie Pfhor!Boomer 3/6/02 4:18 a.m.
                                                           Scrapbook Pages 27-31REB 3/6/02 9:56 a.m.
                                                                 Thanks Raul! :-) *NM*Hamish Sinclair 3/6/02 10:09 a.m.
                                                                       Re: Thanks Raul! :-)D-M.A. 3/8/02 1:46 a.m.
                                                                             Re: Thanks Raul! :-)REB 3/8/02 9:48 a.m.
                                                                                   Re: Thanks Raul! :-)Hamish Sinclair 3/8/02 1:14 p.m.
                                                                                         Speaking of typos and errors...poena.dare #CP# 3/8/02 2:03 p.m.
                                                                                               Re: Speaking of typos and errors...Hamish Sinclair 3/9/02 4:52 a.m.
                                                                                               Then There Were Eightpoena.dare #CP# 3/9/02 9:19 a.m.
                                                                                         Scrapbook Pages 5-8REB 3/9/02 1:09 p.m.
                                                                                               Whoa! the man is back! Nice post. :-) *NM*Hamish Sinclair 3/9/02 4:11 p.m.
                                                                 Re: One last word...mnemesis 3/6/02 11:26 a.m.
                                                                 Re: Scrapbook Pages 27-31Vid Boi 3/11/02 4:18 p.m.
                                                                       Isn't F**k Microsoft 2 words?REB 3/11/02 6:41 p.m.
                                                                             Re: Isn't F**k Microsoft 2 words?Vid Boi 3/12/02 4:28 a.m.
                                                     Re: Scrapbook Pages 19-22Andrew Nagy 3/7/02 6:51 a.m.

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