All the Write Moves

Why game developers need comic book writers

Warren Ellis does see one very specific transferable skill, and one that’s been honed to perfection creating monthly periodical comics.

“It’s knowing when to stop. Whatever I put down is going to be interpreted by twenty to a hundred people, really, who will add stuff on to it. So I have to step back, not load things down with masses of description and specific timing, and take more of an overview.”

The comic creators seem to have some very strong opinions on the games world around them. Andy Diggle is quite animated about it all:

“It bugs me that there’s so much flabby, under-dramatized, downright clichéd writing in games. The endless, dreadful dialogue scenes in the Metal Gear Solid games make me want to shoot the TV - which is a shame, because I love the gameplay,” he says. “The Grand Theft Auto games on the other hand, have some wonderful writing behind them, without getting in the way of the gameplay. The talk radio stations and ads in Vice City are laugh-out loud funny.”

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