Christopher Frederic Avellone (born 27 September 1971) is a video game designer who has worked on Fallout 2, Van Buren (the canceled Fallout 3 by Black Isle Studios), Fallout: New Vegas, and Wasteland 2. He is also writing a novella on the Wasteland 2 world.
Avellone is a descendant of Sicilian immigrants. After receiving his high school diploma at the renowned Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, he attended the College of William & Mary in Virginia (with Todd Howard) and completed with a Bachelors in English. During that time, he wrote short stories and scripts for role-playing games, some of which were published in the Dungeons & Dragons magazine Dragon.
Through Bruce Harlick, then editor with Hero Games, he received the chance to write a book for the role-playing game Dark Champions. After several publications with Hero Games, he decided that game design was a career option.
Black Isle Studios
Steve Peterson, one of the founders of Hero Games, provided Avellone an interview with Interplay, a large game publisher at the time. His knowledge of role-playing games and his ideas impressed Interplay, and he was offered a position as a game designer. Around 1997 or 1998, Avellone moved to Orange County, where Interplay was located.
Avellone got involved with the Fallout series when production was started at Black Isle Studios on Fallout 2. While many feel that his "feel" for the Fallout canon was lacking, the design of New Reno has been praised by just as many. Later, he became the lead designer of a project codenamed Van Buren, which was canceled in 2003 and revealed to have been Black Isle's attempt at developing Fallout 3.
Aside from Fallout games, Avellone was also the lead designer of Planescape: Torment.
After leaving Black Isle Studios, Avellone, together with Feargus Urquhart, founded Obsidian Entertainment. At Obsidian, Avellone has worked on such titles as, Neverwinter Nights 2 and its expansion, Mask of the Betrayer, and was lead designer on Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic II and Alpha Protocol. He also wrote All Roads, a prequel to Fallout: New Vegas, and has also written a few Star Wars comics such as Unseen, Unheard for the Star Wars Tales series of comics and a few issues of Star Wars: Clone Wars Adventures comic series, such as Heroes on Both Sides and Impregnable, all of which have been published by Dark Horse Comics. He was a writer on Fallout: New Vegas and the lead designer on New Vegas add-ons. He also co-wrote the lyrics for the song "Begin Again" featured in the Dead Money add-on.
Other work (excerpt)
|cancelled||Van Buren||Lead Designer|
|2010||Fallout: New Vegas (and add-ons)'||Senior Designer|