The Weirdest Spy Action Novels Ever Published

The "Men's Adventure" novel is a strange thing. At the height of its popularity, in the late 60s and 70s, it was being written by dozens of peculiar and reclusive authors. But the influence of this weird genre is still felt today. Here's the strange history of Mack Bolan and his many imitators. » 2/11/15 1:15pm 2/11/15 1:15pm

10 Public Domain Characters That Are Overdue For A Reboot

Some older fictional characters turn up again and again and again: Count Dracula and his foes, Victor Frankenstein, Dorothy Gale and the denizens of Oz. But Western literature's public domain is filled with excellent characters, many who deserve a bit more limelight. » 1/21/15 10:16am 1/21/15 10:16am

10 Science Fiction And Fantasy Stories That Editors Are Tired Of Seeing

To you, your short story is unique and perfect. To editors, it's "the third steampunk time-travel story we've seen this week." But which trends should you try to avoid? To find out, we asked some of the top editors in the field which type of science fiction and fantasy stories they're tired of seeing. Here's what they… » 4/22/14 10:28am 4/22/14 10:28am

The Perils Of Writing Video Games

Rhianna Pratchett is best known around these parts as someone who writes video games, but what does that actually entail? It sure is different to sitting down and writing, say, a screenplay, or novel. » 3/04/14 12:00am 3/04/14 12:00am

Why can't Hollywood make a decent fairy tale movie?

Fairytales contain some of the most delightful make-believe in literature, even with all their creepiness and weirdness. These stories of bargains and trials, distilled by the oral tradition, pack some of the most potent storytelling in any genre, for any audience. So why can't anybody manage to make a halfway decent… » 3/28/13 12:29pm 3/28/13 12:29pm

How Video Game Stories Are Written

Having just endured the train wreck that was Far Cry 3's narrative arc, now's the perfect time to look at this guide by GameFront on how to write a story for a video game. » 12/19/12 12:00am 12/19/12 12:00am

A Simple Way To Fix Far Cry 3's Dumb Story

Far Cry 3 does a lot of things right. It's fun to play, the island setting is beautiful, sneaking around is a lot of fun, gunplay is solid, and everything works well. But the story… well, the story has some issues. » 12/12/12 7:00pm 12/12/12 7:00pm

Why Video Game Characters Say Such Ridiculous Things

If you've played a video game, you've probably heard a bark. And not just in Nintendogs—I'm talking about an "enemy bark," which is the term for the adaptive lines of chatter that enemy characters utter throughout the game. » 6/28/12 1:00pm 6/28/12 1:00pm

Which of These Five Games Had the Best Writing of 2012?

Every year the Writers Guild of America awards a special Outstanding Achievement in Video Game Writing award to the team responsible for the most memorable interactive entertainment script. Which of these five titles will walk away a winner on February 19? » 1/11/12 5:30pm 1/11/12 5:30pm

The New Medium Where Writers Are Trying To Make It

What would you expect to be paid to write a video game script? $100,000? Maybe you'd get that a few years ago, but the rate is now more between $10,000 to $20,000, writes The New York Observer. » 11/18/10 1:00am 11/18/10 1:00am

God Of War Writer Gets Shanked

Marianne Krawczyk, best known for bringing Kratos to life as the writer of God of War, is lending her talents to a different kind of hero in Klei Entertainment's Shank. » 5/13/10 1:20pm 5/13/10 1:20pm

Where Have All the Good Bad Guys Gone?

Every adventure requires an antagonist, someone or something corrupting the world you're in. It's a basic need. Yet why do so many games serve up foes whose evildoing provides more of a chore to be undone than a memorable struggle? » 4/18/10 1:00pm 4/18/10 1:00pm

Why Games Need More Than One Simple Word

No matter who is brought in to write a story or dialogue, the industry still treats the written word in such a utilitarian way that it has a second-class citizenship among the other art forms comprising a video game. » 4/11/10 1:00pm 4/11/10 1:00pm

Hear Your Words In Tales Of Monkey Island

How has Guybrush Threepwood, Mighty Pirate, wronged you? Tell your tale to Telltale and you might hear it in the final chapter of the episodic Tales of Monkey Island. » 7/15/09 11:40am 7/15/09 11:40am

Rockstar's Dan Houser Favors Creative Freedom Over Respect

Rockstar creative VP and lead GTA IV writer Dan Houser would rather have the creative freedom of writing for video games remain intact than be treated with respect. » 1/28/09 1:40pm 1/28/09 1:40pm

The Pleasure of Writing About Games

Over at Gamers With Jobs, Julian Murdoch looks at the craft of writing about games — and how being a gaming journalist has improved his relationship with games. While I've found writing about games has significantly cut into my time I can spend playing games — and there's a difference between playing for pleasure and… » 7/13/08 2:30pm 7/13/08 2:30pm

See Word's Spell Checker Struggle With Game Names

Seeing as I tend to write stuff like "Nintendo" and "Xbox 360" a lot, my Word spell checker's chock-full of gaming names. Call it OCD, but I can't stand those squiggly little red lines under words I know I've spelled correctly. What happens, though, when you're an Average Joe and you don't have names like "Katamari… » 6/06/08 6:00am 6/06/08 6:00am

Epic "Want To Do A Much Better Job" On Gears 2's Story

If you dug Gears of War for what it was - and hey, it was a great shooter - move along. Nothing to see here. If, however, you need a little context for your button-pressing, and were left cold by the first game's hole-riddled story, read on! Kudo Tsunoda, from Microsoft, has said that the team working on Gears 2 are… » 5/14/08 11:20pm 5/14/08 11:20pm