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Friday, February 19, 2010

6 reasons why you should look at writing for games

In the last of my 'games specials' I bring you some reasons why you should consider writing for games (if you aren't already).

These came from a lecture given by Professor Lachlan Mackinnon at Abertay University - a centre for excellence in games teaching.

One: Money
The games industry is worth $45billion worldwide - so there is money around. The UK is still a player (just about), so you can get a foot in the door. A big UK Massively Mutliplayer Online game will cost £50m to develop. Compare that to how many UK £50m films there are.

Two: It's not for kids
The average age of players is now 33. So your game writing doesn't have to be childish stuff - unless you want it to be.

Three: Games aren't for gamers
Not a hardcore full-on nerdy gamer? Well, that's cool. Neither are the majority of people who play games. They play on their Wii, or their iPhone and they play socially with friends.

Four: You don't have to sit on your own
The biggest games right now are a/ facebook games and b/ online games. The vision of the lonely gamer in his bedroom is now rare.

Five: You won't feel at home
Not true. You will be invited in too late to contribute ideas - or too early so they change it all later. Hey, just like in films.

Six: It is not a whole new world
When you have actors on a stage the director sets the rules for the game and the script is their guide. In games it is the same thing, but one step further removed. The game sets up the rules and we are all actors on the stage. The script is a guide for us all.

Here are my previous posts on this topic:
Sources of games writing jobs.
How to apply for games writing jobs.
Skills you already have that are useful.
Helpful resources to use when you have work.


James said...

There are some games that have "movie quality" scripts... like Metal Gear Solid

Tim Clague said...

I think you are right to put "movie quality" in quotes. We all know that simply being a movie is no sign of quality.

On the other hand the twist in Bioshock 1 is something that couldn't be done in films. Just as Sixth Sense couldn't be done in games. And that's as it should be I feel.