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May 26, 2018
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Chris Solarski's Blog   Expert Blogs


Chris Solarski (SOLARSKI STUDIO) is an expert on art and storytelling in video games. His two books are widely considered essential reading for anybody interested understanding the artistic scope of interactive media. Chris' first book—Drawing Basics and Video Game Art (Watson-Guptill 2012)—is endorsed by John Romero and has been translated into Japanese and Korean. His second book—Interactive Stories and Video Game Art (CRC Press 2016)—has been described as gaming's equivalent to the screenwriting classic, Story, by Robert McKee and is endorsed by Hollywood film director, Marc Forster: 

"Chris Solarski’s book gives content creators crucial insights into interactive story composition and how to adapt these concepts for transmedia storytelling."
Marc Forster, Film Director and Producer

With kind support from the Swiss Arts Council, Pro Helvetia, Chris has given talks at international venues including the Smithsonian's landmark The Art of Video Games exhibition, SXSW, GDC Europe, and FMX. Chris is currently collaborating with internationally renowned artist, Phil Hale, to develop an indie game based on the Johnny Badhair series of paintings. He also lectures at SAE Institute Zurich and coordinates the IGDA Switzerland Chapter.

Please visit his Facebook Page or follow Chris on Twitter for the latest news.


Expert Blogs

Posted by Chris Solarski on Thu, 09 Feb 2017 10:10:00 EST in Design, Art, Console/PC, Indie, VR
This article concerns the dramatic value of player-character motivation and in story-driven games. The featured case studies illustrate techniques for adding a second narrative layer to game objectives, and how this layer can heighten player immersion.

Posted by Chris Solarski on Mon, 15 Aug 2016 06:37:00 EDT in Design, Art, Serious, Indie
An international line-up of indie developers was brought together by the IGDA Switzerland Chapter to discuss the topic of death and consequence in game design. What emerged were varied perspectives that reflected the complex nature of death.

The newly resurrected IGDA Switzerland Chapter hosted its first Demo Night in Zurich on Monday 4th April around the theme of “music and game design,” and included talks by four Swiss-based developers, Masaya Matsuura, and Fernando Ramallo.

Posted by Chris Solarski on Mon, 08 Jun 2015 06:05:00 EDT in Design, Production, Art, Serious, Social/Online
Chris Solarski interviews Markus Liechti—the winner of 'Gross. Stadt. Jagd.'—about his competition-level experience with board games and how it influenced his approach to playing the mixed-reality GPS game designed for Mercedes-Benz.

Posted by Chris Solarski on Fri, 21 Jun 2013 03:50:00 EDT in Design, Art
The article elaborates on the topic of framing and centering in game design, as discussed in Steve Gaynor's GDC 2013 talk on 'Techniques for In-Level Storytelling.'

Chris Solarski's Comments

Comment In: [Blog - 04/05/2017 - 11:23]

Very happy to see you ...

Very happy to see you also enjoying the shape concepts Mike Nice article I thought that you may be interested to hear that my Gamasutra article has now been turned into a comprehensive book 'Interactive Stories and Video Game Art ' that also includes storytelling techniques. Great work :D

Comment In: [Blog - 06/21/2013 - 03:50]

Glad you like the article, ...

Glad you like the article, Lisa You may also be interested in another article I wrote on the aesthetics of video game art and design: aesthetics of game art and .php r n r nThanks for clarifying: I 've inserted the full title of the talk at the top ...

Comment In: [Feature - 01/30/2013 - 04:50]

Thanks for all the nice ...

Thanks for all the nice feedback r n r nIn answer to your questions: r n r ntb: Nope, I only experimented with the strongest shape contrasts the circle and triangle. r n r nArturo Nereu: The only shape change that happens is between level 1 and 2, where the ...

Comment In: [Feature - 09/08/2010 - 07:30]

Thanks for the nice feedback, ...

Thanks for the nice feedback, Yensei and everyone else The emphasis was more on studying somewhere where I wouldn't be distracted by the need to work and make a living. Warsaw was the perfect option because it's very cheap to live and study in Poland. My family is Polish so ...

Comment In: [News - 09/08/2010 - 03:22]

Hi Bobby Thanks for taking ...

Hi Bobby Thanks for taking an interest in the article but I would recommend that you read the full text first before coming to any conclusions the above is just an overview . Your points are discussed more thoroughly in the full text. The articles pretext is simply to pass ...

Comment In: [Blog - 07/28/2010 - 07:49]

Apologies for the self-promotion on ...

Apologies for the self-promotion on the back of your article, Paul, but I think it's relevant. : Gbanga - - comes under the Small Developer heading. We already have our location-based platform running on iPhone and most J2ME phones. We take advantage of viral marketing services like Facebook and ...