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My favourite Christmas game: Glen Schofield

"It was a loud house full of laughter, good food and video games everywhere."

Yesterday's instalment in our Christmas soapbox feature got us feeling all festive, but somehow today's manages to crank up the jolly factor even higher.

In preparation for Christmas we asked the creators behind some of 2011's top titles to share their favourite ever Christmas game memories - and the latest participant definitely classes as having worked on a 'top title'.

Following Cliff Bleszinski's Mega Drive / Genesis memories, Kudo Tsunoda's Disneyland daydream and Randy Pitchford's heartfelt Christmas story, today Modern Warfare 3's Sledgehammer Games boss Glen Schofield - previously of EA and Dead Space fame - remembers a monster festive gaming session...

Check back this week for more instalments of My Favourite Christmas Game.

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"I'll never forget the holiday season of 2008 for a number of reasons. It was a fantastic year for games and we had just finished and shipped Dead Space. Family showed up from different parts of the country - nieces, nephews, in-laws, grandmas and grandpas. It was a full and lively house.

"What made it so much extra fun was sitting around with my family, especially my son, daughter, nieces, nephew and brother in-law, playing video games. We had a PS3 in one room, a Wii and 360s in two other rooms, all hooked up to nice big screens and full sound systems, rigged up just for the holidays. We planned ahead, saved up the games and all took time off.

"I had just finished making Dead Space and the success of it was completely unexpected, which made the time even more enjoyable. This is also why I could take some time off just to play games and why I had so many games I hadn't played yet.
2008 was considered one of the best, if not the best, year for game releases, at least at the time. I still think it is with this year possibly coming pretty darn close.

"We started off with Call of Duty: World at War in one room and Gears of War 2 in another. We had a juicer all ready so we'd drink and eat healthy as we ploughed through game after game.

"We ripped through World at War which was a nice surprise and a great way to start. I think we finished Gears just two hours later. My brother in-law Tom and I would always play together so at least we'd see the whole game and switch every 15 minutes or so.

"We immediately put in Lost Planet and Left 4 Dead. It was so much fun switching between different games. We could hear the kids in another room laughing and yelling as they played Dynasty Warriors, Rock Band and LittleBigPlanet. They'd come running in from time to time when they heard me and Tom yelling out from victory or some dumb move that got us killed. Truth be told, I'd have to call my son in from time to time to get through a boss. I'll deny ever saying that.

"We immediately put in Lost Planet and Left 4 Dead. It was so much fun switching between different games."

"Nothing disappointed us, although at times Lost Planet had some crazy boss that took some time and patience.

"About three days in we were up to Devil May Cry 4, which also had some great moments to go with an overwhelming amount of backtracking. But we got through that and decided to play Army of Two together. We had a blast. It was new and fresh and fun to play together.

"By now we had gone through so much juice I started feeling like an orange. Our plan to just eat healthy started to fade as Christmas Day got closer and candy and gift baskets started showing up. From time to time we'd go into the kids' room and start playing Guitar Hero or jump around in Mirror's Edge thinking this would count as exercise.

"We stayed up later and later at night but nobody cared. We'd get up in the morning, hit the gym, have some breakfast and start playing. This went on a good solid 10-12 days, this was our holiday. The families were together, we were all playing together and just letting go.

"We decided to play Insomniac's Resistance 2 and Ratchet and Clank: Quest for Booty at the same time so we needed to borrow another PS3. Those two were great. Even my wife Barb jumped in on Ratchet and Clank.

"I still think fondly on that holiday season. It was a loud house full of laughter, good food and video games everywhere. It even seemed like most of the presents exchanged were video game peripherals or themed items.

"All in all we completely finished about ten games and played parts or most of about another ten. We were blurry eyed, ten pounds heavier (the juicer idea worked for a while but...) and happy. It was a pretty quiet house once everyone left.

"So this year we just finished making Modern Warfare 3. It has been a fantastic year for games, I've saved up a pile of unopened ones and all our relatives are coming up. Systems are set up and I'm hoping to capture some of that magic from 2008.

"Here's a list of the games I can remember from that great two week gaming marathon.

  • Army of Two
  • CoD: World at War
  • Condemned
  • Fallout 3
  • Devil May Cry
  • Far Cry 2
  • Resistance 2
  • Lost Planet, Extreme Condition
  • Ratchet and Klank; quest for Booty
  • Spore
  • BioShock
  • Little Big Planet
  • Mirrors Edge
  • Left 4 Dead
  • Mass Effect
  • Dynasty Warriors 6
  • Gears of War 2
  • Rock Band
  • Guitar Hero
"

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is out now on Xbox 360, PS3 PC, Wii and DS.

Next in My Favourite Christmas Game: Media Molecule's Mark Healey

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