Starfield Lead Designer Pays Tribute to Deceased Collaborator as Game’s Launch Approaches


Lead Game Designer Emil Pagliarulo fondly remembers his collaboration with former colleague Ferret Baudoin, who tragically passed away before the launch of Starfield. Baudoin was a talented game designer known for his work on Fallout 76 and other titles like Neverwinter Nights 2 and the Dragon Age series. Pagliarulo and Baudoin worked closely together on one particular quest for Starfield, which Pagliarulo is excited for players to experience but is keeping the details under wraps for now.

The highly anticipated launch of Bethesda’s Starfield is imminent, and as the excitement grows, Lead Game Designer Emil Pagliarulo has been reminiscing about collaborating with his former colleague Ferret Baudoin. Bethesda Senior Game Designer Baudoin passed away in October 2022 and will unfortunately not get to see the launch of the space-faring RPG to which he contributed. His presence, however, will be felt throughout the game via the many elements he had a hand in designing.

Baudoin may be best known for his work as lead quest designer in Fallout 76, but the long-time industry veteran got his start as a QA tester at Activision in 1997. During his decades working as a game developer, Baudoin quickly made his mark as a skilled designer and contributed to a range of titles from Neverwinter Nights 2, the three Dragon Age games, and even the canceled Black Isle version of Fallout 3. Eventually, Baudoin was hired by Bethesda, where he worked on Fallout 4, 76 and, of course, Starfield.

As marketing for Starfield ramps up with the release of limited-edition merch and much discussion on social media, the game’s lead designer Emil Pagliarulo created a Twitter thread in which he recalls how much he enjoyed collaborating with Baudoin on the project. The pair would discuss “NPCs, quest beats, story moments,” and at one point, said Pagliarulo, “Ferret was just on fire… [He] had the kind of optimism that made you remember how awesome it is to be a game designer.”

Pagliarulo is excited for players to experience one Starfield quest in particular, which the two designers worked on together. Understandably, the developer is choosing to remain mum on the details about the quest, at least until after the game is released. The Twitter thread ended with a moving message directed at Baudoin: “We did it, bud. We finally pulled it off, and you were an important part of that. Now the Starfield is even brighter with you in it.”

For some people, the upcoming launch of the long-awaited Bethesda RPG will be bittersweet. The concept for the game was around even before its title was trademarked in 2013, and inevitably with the passing of so much time, many people will not have the opportunity to see the project come to fruition. Many gamers have promised to name their starship after one Starfield fan who passed away from lung cancer in May. The game originally had a November 2022 release date, and when Bethesda announced that it would be delayed until sometime in 2023, fan Alex Hay expressed his dismay that he might never get to play the game due to his illness.

Now that Starfield has gone gold and preloading has begun, the excitement for Bethesda’s first new IP in 25 years is incredibly high. Along with Spider-Man 2, Cyberpunk 2077: Phantom Liberty, and Modern Warfare 3, the sci-fi action RPG is one of the most anticipated releases of the year, and gamers are enthusiastically prepping for a jam-packed Fall season.

Starfield launches on September 6 for PC and Xbox Series X/S.

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