Talking as part of an in-depth Gamasutra interview
, Epic's Rod Fergusson has been discussing the story evolution for Gears Of War 2
, suggesting "we weren't as confident as we should've been" for the first game's story, and revealing the game will be taking "some risks, story-wise" for the sequel.
Fergusson, who is the senior producer for the Gears of War
franchise explained his role alongside Cliff Bleszinski helping with Gears Of War
canon as follows:
"I'm kind of the continuity guy; I'm the one reviewing the book, and reviewing different aspects to make sure it makes sense in our universe; and we have a story team on the game... to make sure that it works within the game."
As he notes: "Because the franchise has gotten so big that when you're worrying about comic books, and novels, and movies, and just continuity of the story bible; there's a lot more to worry about in Gears Of War 2
than Gears Of War 1
, where we were just focused on gameplay."
So how do you keep everything together when your franchise backstory and story is rapidly expanding?
Fergusson suggests: "It's a matter of having that balance of keeping the world open enough for choice and growth and whatever direction you want to take it, but at the same time it needs to have enough information to feed all the different mediums who request something from you."
Most interestingly, the Epic team now seems comfortable enough with the franchise scenario and storytelling methods to get more sophisticated with how the game's narrative is told.
The producer notes: "In [the first] Gears Of War
, it's been a long time since Epic did a story-driven game, and so we weren't as confident as we should have been in telling the Gears 1
story, and there were certain choices that we didn't take, because we just weren't confident that we could pull it off, or that people would believe it, so we backed off of that.
He concludes: "And now, with Gears Of War 2
, and the success we had with Gears 1
, we feel a little bit more confident about that. One of the things that I think people are going to take away... [is that] people are going to walk away from the game, at the end of this experience, and go: 'They took some risks, story-wise, and I'm really surprised in that.'"
The full interview with Epic's Fergusson on Gear Of War 2
and the expansion of the franchise is now available