GAME WRITER HUSTLE: The Writing Test
Competition is fierce. Top videogame studios know there's a TON of talent out there vying for that dream game writer gig. (or, in these troubled times, ANY decent work) The solution? A little bit of controversial 'free labour' known as...the WRITING TEST. Now, I've been a game writer and interactive narrative guy since 1997. That's 23 YEARS. Let that sink in for a minute. And even with that slew of storytelling experience, heaps of professional accolades, high-level game writer recommendations, and some acclaimed self-created indie projects? I still get asked, more often than not these days, to 'audition'. Seriously. ..
GAME WRITING: A Short Exercise In Suspense ('Homecoming')
A potential client recently offered an intriguing challenge — write a short story in five parts with the following limitations: three sections of prose under 200 words in 2nd person narrative style, and two sections of TEXT MESSAGE dialogue with 8 lines or less in each. Use a female protagonist, and craft the tale from one of the following genres: Romance, Urban Fantasy, Comedy, Horror, or Suspense.
COVENTRY: A World-Building and Branching Narrative Exercise (GAMES)
Building a world affords a certain creative freedom. You aren't forced to work within established boundaries or strict IP limitations. You can let the imagination run a little wild. You have a chance to throw stuff against the wall and see what sticks. And, quite often, you can incorporate factual research into the world building of a fictional space. Which means you might even learn a thing or two in the process.
GAME WRITING: 'Kardashian' Game Meets the Music Industry
In this opening scene for a yet-to-be-announced mobile game (along the lines of the *shudder* blockbuster Kim Kardashian: Hollywood) we meet a wide-eyed musical wannabe. She's fresh off the bus from somewhere in small-town USA, after the fates smiled upon her with a prime busking spot in LA...
TROPHY BINGO (Short Study #2)
When Trophy Bingo was originally presented to me by friends at Roadhouse Interactive, I wasn't sure how I could help; it's a mobile game targeted at middle-aged women who like dogs, have scads of free time, and consider bingo to be the epitome of 'fun'. Quite the challenge for a dude steeped in horror, sci-fi, and CATS...
Of (Book) Covers and Cleverness
Transformation and evolution are inherently INTERNAL processes. This makes them feel mysterious, invisible, and unquantifiable. But as soon as those first sparks of metamorphosis start to fly—and whether you're conscious of it or not—the Change spills OUTSIDE. Touching everything. Especially the things you create...
CASE STUDY: Of Games and (going with your) Guts
Unless I became independently wealthy, married rich, or finally donned the crimson robes, 'Service Work' was going to be an ongoing necessity. But never again would I take a gig out of desperation, no matter how shiny it seemed. I could only do it if it felt right. Because whenever I've attempted otherwise? It's always been a case of courting DISASTER...