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The Writing Of BioWare's Dragon Age II: David Gaider Speaks

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The Writing Of BioWare's Dragon Age II: David Gaider Speaks

Interview - posted by VentilatorOfDoom on Tue 2 August 2011, 08:53:55

Tags: BioWare; Dragon Age 2

Let Dave Gaider tell you the tale how he and Mike Laidlaw managed to come up with one of the most  innovative (some people didn't like it, because it was too innovative) approaches to writing in games.

It was Laidlaw who first proposed the new game concept. His idea was this: instead of telling a linear, he suggested they modify the structure on a high level and jump between the major moments of a character's life. Instead of telling a story over a short span of time in a wide open world, they would set the game within a single city, and jump through an epic ten-year period. This would be accomplished with the help of a framing device, allowing for the time jumps to be implemented as flashbacks.

"[The new approach] definitely allowed us some unique opportunities," Gaider says. "Sometimes the lack of an ability to hand-wave time passing means we end up with a lot of events happening in an unrealistically short span, or repercussions for a player's actions that either need to occur instantly or be relegated to the epilogue. So this offered us the chance to give a sense of greater scope."

Yes, the sense of greater scope. I remember very well.

 

Spotted at: Gamebanshee

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