Breathing Life into Greek Myth: The Dialogue of ‘Hades’ Darren Korb and Greg Kasavin’s GDC talk about developing the dialogue for Hades from an audio and writing perspective.
Stories that Haunt and Heal: Mental Health and Game Narrative Jean Leggett, Jessica Fong, and Gabriella Lowgren’s GDC talk about their experiences with exploring mental health in their games.
Panel on Editing Games, focusing on interactive fiction.
Will the writer fix it? Matthew Weise writes about integrating narrative design into an existing team by looking at challenges and solutions.
How do you go from a big broad idea to developing specific details? Emily Short writes about how to go from macro to micro ideas.
Your games career as a: Narrative Designer Interview with Brooke Maggs about her job as a narrative designer.
Susan O’Connor on How To Write A Great Video Game Character.
Interview with Nick Pearce about The looping narrative structure of The Forgotten City.
D S Wadeson on Soft Skills for Narrative Design with input from other developers.
Narrative design myth-busting: It’s not “just lore” Matthew Weise writes about lore and its use within narrative design.
Interview with some of the developers behind Life is Strange: True colors about Making the best story possible for Life is Strange: True Colors.
Interview with Jasmine Osler about Creating Ghost Switch, a visual novel without text.
Panel on Endless Storytelling and how to write a story over years while keeping it engaging.
Playlist with talks about game writing, narrative design, tools, and more from NZGDC21.
Red Pill Blue Pill: Narrative AI for Deep Emotions Nicole Lazzaro’s GDC talk about opportunities for AI to design emotional narrative in the future.
Deep Dive: A holistic approach to emotional storytelling in Roki Alex Kanaris-Sotiriou from Polygon Treehouse takes a deep dive into their approach to storytelling for their game Röki.
Do choices in games really matter? Noelle Warner writes about if choices in games really matter, and how to create choices that feel satisfying for the player.
Narrative design myth-busting: It’s not “just writing” There are a lot of misconceptions about what narrative design really is, and in this article Matthew Weise tries to clear up some of those.
Susan O’Connor writes about three skills your narrative director expects you to have. Including flowcharts, handling feedback, and knowing what the job really is about.
Exploring the branching narrative of shrinking storybook adventure, Pageturner Interview with No Loading Required about the development of their game, Pageturner.
Playing the Archaeologist: turning archaeology into gameplay
Narrative Director Jon Ingold talks about Heaven’s Vault and how they used archeology as a basis for the story and gameplay.
Sex and Romance in Games
Panel about how sex and romance are currently being portrayed in games and how it can be improved.
Procgen in Wildermyth: Storytelling
Nate Austin talks about how they developed the procedural narrative for Wildermyth.
How to get a Job in Narrative Design
Panel on getting a job in Narrative Design.
Women in Gaming: Yunni Goder – Game Writer
Interview with Yunni Goder about producing and writing games.
The Future of Storytelling & Narrative Design with Ken Levine
Conversation with Ken Levine about storytelling and narrative design in video games.
The 5 Essentials for Designing Towns in Video Games
Jacob Conner Harris writes about important aspects in designing towns for games from a narrative perspective.
Plot. It’s a Problem.
Emily Short writes about developing plot for games and the challenges that come with interactive narratives.
The biggest mistake game writers make
Susan O’Connor writes about how to write stories for video games when many players tend to ignore the story.
About Narration In Games
Paul Mozet writes about narration and how it can impact the perspective of the story.
(P)Layer Character: Designing Immersive Narratives for Location-Based AR Layers Robert Morgan talks about designing narrative for AR and the unique challenges that come with that.
Environmental Narrative: Telling Stories in Spaces Without Saying Anything Aloud Laura E. Hall’s GDC talk about telling stories with little or no words and instead using the environment to tell the story.
The Hero’s Journey: Strong Storytelling in Video Games Panel on how to write powerful stories for video games and how it differs from storytelling in other media.
Narrative Design for the Computer Gaming Industry Panel about what narrative design is and how to craft a story that blends together with all the various aspects of a game.
Mythology in TTRPGs Panel on how to create good mythology for games and how to respectfully incorporate it into TTRPGs.
My Mom is Going to See This Isn’t She?: How to write a filthy game to be proud of Bendi Barrett talks about how to write good erotic games and also goes into the challenges and stigma that comes with creating erotic stories.
The Clockwork of Mechanized Emotions in Games Panel about crafting stories that evoke the intended emotions for the players.
Games Writing and Prose Writing in Conversation Panel on how writing prose for video games differs from other media and how the learnings from the different media inform each other.
Indie Developer Interview: inkle Narrative director Jon Ingold talks about inkle’s most recent release Overboard.
Guiding players with story-driven events in live games using ‘breadcrumbs’
Write-up of Abigail Rindo’s GDC talk about how they use narrative breadcrumbs to keep players invested in events in live games.
Frostpunk designer: Systems can express personal ideas, even unintentionally Write-up of Marta Fijak’s GDC talk on how systems can express personal ideas and worldviews, intentionally or not.
Understanding the meaningless, micro-reactive, and marvellous writing of Disco Elysium Write-up of Justin Keenan’s GDC talk on how they used micro-reactivity in Disco Elysium to make players feel like their actions matter.
Branching Infinity: Exploring the Many Structures of Interactive Fiction Nat Mesnard gives an introduction to the various structures that you can use when writing interactive fiction.
Game Writing: Authentic Narratives Panel about authenticity in games writing.
Video Games as Historical Problem Spaces Jeremiah McCall talks about teaching history through video games.
Exploring Identity through Character Mechanics in JRPGs Destina Connor delves into how identity is expressed through mechanics in JRPGs.
Silent Stories: The Last of Us Part II’s Unusually Riveting Collectible Notes Jenyth Evans writes about how notes are used for storytelling in The Last of Us Part II.
Patching Conversations to Pin the Blame Jon Ingold tells us about how they used a patchwork approach to pin down the murderer for Inkle’s newly released game Overboard!
Crafting the life-altering, divergent narrative of Across the Grooves Interview with Geoffroy Vincens, the writer for IGF Excellence in Narrative-nominated, Across the Grooves.
Telling story through gameplay Kaitlin Tremblay uses Grindstone as a case study to tell us about how to tell stories in games that are generally considered gameplay-focused.
My name is Helene Vitting and I’m a freelance game writer and narrative designer with experience from interactive fiction, visual novels, puzzle games, and more. I spend a lot of time watching talks and reading articles related to game writing and narrative design to continue to develop my skills, so I’ve decided to collect these into monthly posts that I want to share with you. I hope you find these useful!
Ludanarracon Last month Ludanarrracon was hosted on Steam. All the talks have now been uploaded to Youtube.
WGGB Video Games Event Writers’ Guild of Great Britain also had an event with talks on game writing. All of which are now on Youtube.
Lessons for Narrative Design from Modern Tabletop RPGs Kathryn Hymes’ GDC talk on what narrative designers can learn from tabletop RPGs.
Plunge into Storytelling: Transitioning into Narrative Design from Other Disciplines Ayesha Khan’s GDC talk full of tips on how to transition to a narrative design career from other disciplines.
Technical Tools for Authoring Branching Dialogue Carrie Patel & David Szymczyk’s GDC talk about the dialogue tool they use at Obsidian Entertainment to aid in creating branching dialogue.
Choices Was the Choose-Your-Own-Adventure Escape I Needed Somdyuti Datta Ray writes about the interactive narrative game Choices, and how it allows you to live out a variety of identities, but also comments on the lack of diversity present in its books.
Want a job in games? Stop applying Susan O’Connor on how to get jobs as a game writer.
Seeking alternatives to revenge narratives in games Malindy Hetfeld on moving past narratives of revenge in games.
Storytelling with Interface: The Narrative Design of User Interface in Video Games Sisi Yuan writes about how to incorporate storytelling into UI.
Monthly Narrative Newsletter for Entry level and Junior Game Writers Samantha Webb has started a newsletter with resources focused on new/early career game writers.