The Soul of Wit: Brevity in Game Dialogue

Gamasutra has a fun essay up from Ben Schneider, formerly of Iron Lore Entertainment and currently narrative designer at Big Huge Games, on dialogue in games — and the challenges of getting it right. Schneider isn't calling for a removal of longer dialogues, but pointing out that short dialogue can function better… » 10/18/08 3:30pm 10/18/08 3:30pm

'Skinning' Games: Some Thematic Problems

Danc at Lost Garden has an interesting post up on themes in games and the effect on game design: while there are definite reasons for the same types of themes and aesthetics popping up in games over and over again, a careful balance needs to be struck between 'skinning' themes and mechanics and putting coherent game… » 10/11/08 12:30pm 10/11/08 12:30pm

The 'Narrative' Straw Man: We're Not Doing That Badly

Michael Abbott of the Brainy Gamer has a great piece up on the straw man of the 'quality of narrative' debate that's been going on in the industry for quite some time now: things aren't as bad as the collective we make them out to be. Really, they're not. Sure, there are broken promises along the way, disappointments… » 8/16/08 4:30pm 8/16/08 4:30pm

A 'Narrative Manifesto': Collecting Current Musings

Michael Abbott of the Brainy Gamer has a nice little roundup of some of the current thinking on narrative designs in games — it's nice to have a couple of reasonably prominent writers/designers/etc. put together in one place, with easily digestible clips. And, as usual, the comments section is just as worthy of… » 8/09/08 5:30pm 8/09/08 5:30pm

Whither Monkey Island: 'Puzzles Are For Geezers'?

Are the ridiculous, wild goose chase puzzles of classic adventure games obsolete? Michael Abbott at the Brainy Gamer grudgingly says they may be — "A revealing slap in the face awaits the - shall we say "veteran" - gamer who hands an old adventure game to a young gamer with a hearty recommendation and an assurance of… » 7/27/08 4:40pm 7/27/08 4:40pm