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Alexander Freed's Blog   Expert Blogs

 

Alexander Freed is a freelance writer with nearly a decade of narrative design experience. He began his video game career at BioWare, where he served as Lead Writer on Star Wars: The Old Republic and Shadow Realms before departing to focus on freelancing. Since then, he's worked as a writer and narrative consultant on projects ranging from indie to AAA to mobile. He also writes comic books and novels. See www.alexanderfreed.com for more information.

 

Expert Blogs

Posted by Alexander Freed on Mon, 29 Jun 2015 01:49:00 EDT in Design, Console/PC, Indie, Smartphone/Tablet
Novelists can't get data on how long it takes someone to read a given chapter or whether anyone finishes their books. You can do much better than that. Shore up your game narrative with the magic of data!


Posted by Alexander Freed on Mon, 15 Jun 2015 05:44:00 EDT in Design, Console/PC, Indie, Smartphone/Tablet
Why do games keep returning to the same tired Tolkien-derivative fantasies and space marine stories? It's not simply a lack of creativity--there are unique challenges to exploring new ideas in interactive narrative, which we'll discuss ways to overcome.


Posted by Alexander Freed on Mon, 04 May 2015 01:51:00 EDT in Design, Console/PC, Smartphone/Tablet
If you’re working on an overall story document for your team’s game and you’re not sure how to approach it, here’s some advice...


Posted by Alexander Freed on Wed, 01 Oct 2014 01:45:00 EDT in Design, Console/PC, Indie
For decades, branching conversation systems have been a powerful tool in game narrative. In the fifth and final part of our series, we discuss means of improving branching dialogue on a line-by-line basis.


Posted by Alexander Freed on Wed, 24 Sep 2014 03:01:00 EDT in Design, Console/PC, Indie
For decades, branching conversation systems have been a powerful tool in game narrative. In part four of our series, we discuss some guiding principles for crafting a branching dialogue scene.


Posted by Alexander Freed on Tue, 16 Sep 2014 07:59:00 EDT in Design, Console/PC, Indie
For decades, branching conversation systems have been a powerful tool in game narrative. In part three of our series, we discuss toolsets and how to structure a conversation for easy review and later editing.



Alexander Freed's Comments

Comment In: [Blog - 06/29/2015 - 01:49]

Bit of a late response ...

Bit of a late response here, but... r n r nOf COURSE narrative folks need something to say. None of these tools are going to help you figure out what you 're trying to express--that 's a whole other topic--but they can help you judge whether you 're expressing yourself ...

Comment In: [Blog - 06/15/2015 - 05:44]

I 'm not sure a ...

I 'm not sure a non-constructed setting actually saves time--you 'd think it would, but a developing a detailed setting background upfront allows a lot of questions to be answered very easily later. Say, should the buildings here be wood or brick Wood, since we know this civilization 's economy ...

Comment In: [Blog - 05/04/2015 - 01:51]

Hey, Evan r n r ...

Hey, Evan r n r nYeah, ABSOLUTELY, and thank you for bringing that up. Just as a plot summary doc can 't replace a story pitch doc for executives or licensors, it also isn 't that useful to bring a large team in sync with the overall narrative direction. Get ...

Comment In: [Blog - 10/01/2014 - 01:45]

Glad you enjoyed the series ...

Glad you enjoyed the series I think profiling the Player character, as you describe, could work great for some games... and I think one of the benefits of handling it through dialogue is that the profile doesn 't need to be ACCURATE--it just needs to be accurate in regards to ...

Comment In: [Blog - 09/24/2014 - 03:01]

Your choice of the word ...

Your choice of the word respected is an interesting one, and I think totally on target. It 's easy for a writer to fall in love with his or her dialogue and want to insist the Player see it... and end up dismissing or resenting Players who prefer a shorter ...

Comment In: [Blog - 09/16/2014 - 07:59]

Oh, fascinating Building an XML ...

Oh, fascinating Building an XML interpreter is certainly a lot simpler than building a whole new tool. r n r nThat said, I 'm not sure what the legal implications of using such a tool for a commercial game would be. For any indie developers, consider this the obvious reminder ...