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Working in the video game writing industry


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#1 Wellington_Wolly   Members   -  Reputation: 106

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Posted 15 October 2012 - 05:21 AM

Hey, I am sure you get posts like this all the time, but I am inspiring to become a successful video game writer, I have a massive passion for video games, and they are a huge part of my life. I also have a passion for creative writing. I wanted to combine two of my passions, and I found this. Video game journalism did not appeal to me that much. Recently, I have been on a flash gaming website known as newgrounds, I came up with the idea of doing a few projects there, and gain some experience, and maybe some additions to my portfolio. I am interested in getting to know more about life as a professional video game writer, things like what you do every day at work etc. Writing for an entire video game seems like a monumental task, writing all the character dialog, plot, setting, cut scenes etc. When creating a budget game, are there a team of writers who write all these parts, and work together. Also, do things like qualifications, and degrees matter, would a video game developer look at these, instead of experience, and how can they affect an employers decision in choosing you to be their writer. And finally the final question is, what are your best tips in breaking into the video game writing industry. Any help is much appreciated, Thanks, Adam

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#2 Ashaman73   Crossbones+   -  Reputation: 7987

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Posted 15 October 2012 - 05:30 AM

Well, I think that writers are one of the smallest group of professionals working in the game industry. This is somewhat of a dilema, because in AAA titles are more writers than in budget titles. I would even guess, that in most indie productions almost no writers are hired (exception might be story driven games). So, leaving you with AAA titles and there I would guess that the requirements are quite high.

#3 DaveTroyer   Members   -  Reputation: 1052

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Posted 16 October 2012 - 11:24 AM

One suggestion I would make is to actually write some stories that you think would be good game narratives and then show them around to developers. I wouldn't go so far as saying you think they should make it a game, but ask their opinion on it and if they'd like to kick around some ideas with you. If they're between projects and not otherwise predisposed there's a chance they'll be down to chat and discuss your work because everyone in this industry is creative.

And though your main goal may be the video game industry, I would venture out in other, similar fields. Try writing for a graphic novel, an animation, a fan film. Also, video game journalism may not be the most fun, but showing a studio that you know how to break down a game and analyze it will show that you have an understanding of what goes into making a good game and what needs to be avoided to keep it from being a steaming, smelly heap.

So yeah, I guess my suggestion would be to practice, produce, and present. Practice your craft (write lots), produce something to show (comic, book, film), and present it to as many people as are willing to look. (Don't force it down peoples throats though; people tend to like what they're reading and you more if you ask for feedback. Heck, they might even offer you a job that way! Posted Image )

But as others have said in other topics, there is no defined way of joining the industry, but I would suggest that you take control of how you present yourself to people.

Anywho, hope that helps some. Good luck!

Check out my game blog - Dave's Game Blog


#4 Tom Sloper   Moderators   -  Reputation: 10148

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Posted 19 October 2012 - 06:19 PM

1. I am inspiring to become a successful video game writer,
2. And finally the final question is, what are your best tips in breaking into the video game writing industry.

1. You mean "aspiring."
2. The Breaking In forum's FAQs includes information on this.
http://www.gamedev.n...ion=rules&f=101
There's an FAQ on working as a writer, an FAQ on networking, and a link to the IGDA Writers SIG.

Edited by Tom Sloper, 19 October 2012 - 06:20 PM.

-- Tom Sloper
Sloperama Productions
Making games fun and getting them done.
www.sloperama.com

Please do not PM me. My email address is easy to find, but note that I do not give private advice.

#5 heavycat   Members   -  Reputation: 387

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Posted 27 November 2012 - 11:21 PM

Good writing is crucial. There are those who argue that graphics > all, but if that were true, Minecraft would have been a total failure and Star Wars: The Phantom Menace would have been universally praised.

Video games, by and large, are a scripted form, so learning to write scripts well is important. Do your best to make good characters first. Characters are everything in writing. Don't be afraid to write short sentences. Use plain language. Make an emotional connection to your audience. Do those things and you will be a success.

Most important: the video game industry is filled with people who do not understand why emotions and the craft of writing are important. They look at games and all they see are ones and zeros. You see the music and your hear the colors. You are the person who takes a game from "something to do" to "memorable event". Don't waste that gift.

#6 ManuelMarino   Members   -  Reputation: 153

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Posted 03 December 2012 - 11:44 AM

becoming a writer for videogames is very difficult, since there are so many and also so many skills are required.

Starting publishing small stories, and also a novel... well, yes, it's easier!!! there are many publishers that can help you and also this helps your portfolio and resume.
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