Last week I ran a two-day masterclass for the Game Developer's Conference - "How To Bring Story and Gameplay Together." We had a great group, with attendees from around the globe. We had several developers from Poland in the Zoom room, and even one badass lady calling in from Australia at 4am! #respect
In our final session, I opened the floor for Q & A. Turns out the #1 question the room had was "What tools do people use to collaborate with the rest of their team?"
GREAT question. And the room had answers. Here's the list we created as a group.
(When possible, I've included videos to make it easier for you to evaluate your options and decide which tools may be right for you.)
For sharing ideas
Miro also allows users to create flowcharts, which can be very helpful for thinking through the player journey. Lucidchart is another excellent option. So is Creately - and that link points you to a game-development flowchart. Nice! Here are 10 of the best flowchart tools, including screenshots, feature overviews, and pricing.
For the actual writing part of the job
When it's time to sit down and put words to paper, studios still rely on traditional screenwriting software for their cutscene scripts. You could use something like Final Draft, Highland, or WriterDuet.
Interactive scripts are a different beast, and require different tools. Twine is still a great go-to option, especially for people who are just starting out. Here is one developer sharing how he uses the tool to make his branching narrative.
For fine-tuning dialog
Game writing involves lots of elements, from mechanics to maps. But sometimes you JUST need to focus on dialog. That's where these tools come in.
For making and sharing games
So there you have it - a roundup of tools designed to make your game-writing life easier and more productive. Hope this helped. See you next week.
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Susan’s first job as a game writer was for “a slumber party game - for girls!” She’s gone on to work on over 25 projects, including award-winning titles in the BioShock, Far Cry and Tomb Raider franchises. Titles in her portfolio have sold over 30 million copies and generated over $500 million in sales. She is an adjunct professor at UT Austin, where she teaches a course on writing for games. A long time ago, she founded the Game Narrative Summit at GDC. Now, she partners with studios, publishers, and writers to help teams ship great games with great stories. She is dedicated to supporting creatives in the games industry so that they can do their best work.