G & T Show SL – Cryptic Trip 3 – Tumerboy
G & T Show SL – Cryptic Trip 3 – Tumerboy is now available to download. Check it out here. Mike recently visited Cryptic Studios and had the opportunity to sit down with the Star Trek Online team for several interviews. The next interview in our series is with one of Star Trek Online’s Environmental Artists, Nick Duguid. Be sure to check out this interview and the others from Mike’s trip by visiting our G & T Show SL – Cryptic Trip Round Up page.
Mike and Adrianne sit down with Nick “TacoFangs” Duguid. He describes his job as being one of the set designers for STO’s missions. A friend of his described his job as the Landscape Architect, which he thought was awesome. He jokes and says that he makes rocks and crates.
Mike refers to the latest featured episode he’s played, House Pegh. The interiors and the environment in that mission are fantastic and they contribute to the story by telling us a little bit more about who the Heralds are. He describes the crack running along the floor of the Iconian hallways with magma flowing through and how they must be using geothermal energy to power their facility. Nick mentions that it could but it’s also part of the ship interior, so a better description could possibly be ‘energy goo’. Nick explains that he can’t take the credit for the work on the Iconian interior. He gives the credit to Adam Flores. He did a little white-box work, but Adam did the bulk of the work and deserves the credit. Mike praises Adam’s work on that mission and how the environment and setting can contribute and enhance a story.
He asks what was the last mission he did the environment art for. Nick build Ramir’s ship in House Pegh out of the Klingon parts that they already had on hand. He had just returned from a month long vacation. Before that, he had revamped sector space. He couldn’t recall the last mission he worked on before that.
Mike comments on how beautiful the sector space map looks. Nick thought Mike was going to complain about why Earth wasn’t in the Alpha Quadrant. Mike hadn’t noticed that, but if states if we’re going to nitpick, he does have an issue he wanted to bring up. In his opinion, Nimbus seemed like it was out of place. Nick sheds some light into his reasoning for its placement, but first asks where he think it should have been placed. Mike thought it should be between the three territories. Nick stated that all of the star charts he had referenced placed Nimbus there. However, referring to Star Trek VI, Nick explains that all of the factions had sent their criminals and the worst of the worst to the planet. Because none of the factions cared about the Planet of Galactic Peace, it necessarily didn’t have to be anywhere they cared about. Nick then says that space is 3D and STO’s maps are 2D, which could in effect put Nimbus in a more central location between the three factions. He admits that it was weird, but they were basing the new locations on the star charts.
Mike understood and said, even if that was his only nitpick, the new sector space is beautiful. Speaking of Nimbus, Adrianne keeps expecting to see a Mad Max reference pop up over there. He comments that people have asked for Buggies on Nimbus and Risa as well, but doesn’t know how likely that would be to happen.
Mike returns to his Environmental art work and asks if there’s a specific environment that he hasn’t done yet, but would like to see in game. He says that there is an environment that he does want to do, but isn’t already in game. He wants to revamp DS9 and make it more accurate to what was seen in the series. He wanted to revamp ESD and eventually was able to do it. Now, he’s looking forward to revamping DS9. He described the current state of DS9 as passable and compares it to an impressionist’s painting, in which if you stand back and squint it looks cool, but if you pay attention to details, there’s a lot wrong with it. He said revamping ESD was a pipe dream as well, but he was able to do it, and isn’t ruling out a DS9 remodel.
Mike confirms that he was responsible for ESD’s revamp. Nick says that the entire team had worked on it at one point or another. They had three or four artists contribute different things on it. Nick led the team and came up with all of the preliminary designs. Mike is pleased to hear that DS9 will get that kind of treatment. DS9 isn’t as freeform as ESD was. Adrianne is constantly surprised by the craftsmanship in ESD. Nick goes on to say that he would be handling it similarly to what he had done when he revamped the Intrepid interior to more accurately represent Voyager in Mindscape. He referenced screenshots and plans to do the same thing for DS9.
Mike asks what his favorite Trek series. His first Trek series was TNG and the Enterprise D is his favorite ship. It’s his favorite. However, he will stick up for Enterprise even though the first season was crap. There were some really good episodes in there, just like there were some really crappy episodes in the other series as well.
Besides Star Trek, is he a fan of any other sci-fi series. Mike had seen where he works, but our listeners had not. Nick calls himself a nerd and draws attention to the Lego Star Destroyer that Mike had seen during his tour. Nick is a brony and has a My Little Pony there as well. A friend gave him a 1980’s porcelain unicorn statue. It was random, but it fit in perfectly with the rest of the stuff on his desk. He mentions Battlestar and Aliens. He’s a gamer. Adrianne mentions Adventure Time. Nick hasn’t seen the latest episodes and waiting for more to hit Netflix. Adrianne had helped him construct his Lumpy Space Princess costume he wore last year for Halloween. He’s a nerd. He likes all sorts of stuff.
Mike draws attention to one of his hobbies that most people may be unaware of. Nick likes working with his hands and has done some wood working and carpentry. He says that people seem to be impressed with his cutting boards. He quickly describes the process of making the cutting boards. He’s interested in mechanical stuff and has old power tools that he restores. Really, he restores the tools and then makes things to test out that everything is working properly. He says that he has hobby ADD. He will be super into one project and then when he gets bored with it, he’ll do something else. He goes between woodworking and video games. Mike mentions that Terry had gotten one of his cutting boards and got to see it the last time he was there. It has some girth to it, because Terry wanted it to hold all the cheeses. Nick jokes that it could kill someone. Mike says when he first saw it, he thought it was a chessboard. Adrianne wants one but doesn’t want to compete with Terry over who has the biggest cheese board.
Mike asks if he reads Star Trek novels. Nick does not and admits that he doesn’t read that much. He’s a more visual person and finds that the words get in the way. He likes audio books, tv shows, and movies. Mike asks what is he watching now. His mother sent him Treme. He also mentions Orphan Black, Game of Thrones, Mad Man, Orange Is The New Black. He watched and really liked Daredevil. They talk about Daredevil’s recent casting news for Punisher for the next season.
Mike asks for the name of his starship. The ship on his dev account is Taquito and shares that all of his ships are named after Mexican food. It could be the tostada. Adrianne asks if the next one will be the Flan. Mike throws out Nacho Bell Grande. The Taquito was his Nova and the Tostada is his pilot ship. He doesn’t play on his dev account, instead he talks to people with it. Mike suggests that his next ship should be called the Big Enchilada. Nick likes it and will rename his Oblisek Carrier the Big Enchilada. Adrianne admits that she can’t pronounce Chili Relleno. They tease her for a few minutes as she tries to figure it out.
Mike asks Nick if he can kill any Star Trek character, who would he kill. Nick doesn’t want to see any of them die because he wants more cool stories from them. He considered trolling us and say Picard. He doesn’t hold ill will toward any of them, even Neelix. Mike explains that Christine had changed her answer to Picard this time because it would make for an interesting story. Nick doesn’t know and wants to think about it some more.
Mike asks if he’d like to drop a hint about what is coming, or to tell our listeners anything about him. Nick can’t discuss anything. Mike understands. Mike teases Adrianne with her new nick name Chili Relleno. Adrianne hasn’t done any new voices for STO lately, but has voiced a few roles so far this year. She’s hoping for more soon. Mike asks if Nick has lent his voice to the game. He has not and doesn’t have any plans to do so. They are saving those roles for the professionals. Mike winds up the interview.
But, wait. There’s more.
He is the co-owner of Busy Little Beaver Productions and is the producer and co-host for G & T Show and Gates of Sto’vo’kor. He’s directed voice actors, and produced and edited audio podcasts and dramas because he doesn’t have the face for video. He plays well with others and is always on the look out for the next project, the next thing, the next next. If he wasn’t working on something with a half dozen other projects waiting in the wings, somebody please check to make sure he’s still breathing.
During the day, he’s a mild-mannered computer repair man who dabbles in web design in his small, rural, Central California community. He lives with his lovingly dysfunctional family and loyal canine companion and spends most of his time in the closet concocting some hair-brained scheme or another. He’s got an unhealthy obsession with Lego video games, Klingons, and Star Trek Online that borders on the neurotic.
Despite all this, he still finds the time to write the words. Find out what he's doing here.