Kevin has been writing Season for over two years now. In other words, he can’t wait to present it to you (and the whole team too!).
Until we can show you a little more about the project itself, we wanted to talk to you a little more about the profession of a video game writer; meeting with our creative director Kevin Sullivan.
- Did you dream of becoming a writer when you were young?
It’s what I wanted to do from the moment I realized that a human being made up Star Wars.
- What is your favorite game?
Writing wise it’d be Kentucky Route Zero. It feels like it was beamed here from the future like they jumped a few spaces ahead. It’s encouraging it was well received considering it basically jettisons all the reliable tricks of storytelling and is more akin to the work of someone like Samuel Beckett or Gabriel García Márquez. It’s already influenced a lot of games but still feels ahead of its time.
- Do you think it’s easy to write a video game?
All writing is hard in different ways. Writing a game is hard in that you’re not only dealing with the multifaceted nature of the form but with the realities of production too. It depends on the nature of the game too; some games live and die on their text and some are less reliant on it.
- What are the good and bad sides of writing?
The good side is when you’re surprised by what’s happening in the story as it unrolls or by connections made by other people that you weren’t consciously aware of when writing. The bad side is that, for me, pretty quickly my feelings about my own writing become very neutral. There’s more enjoyment in listening back to a piece of music you’ve written than in reading your own text, I find.
- Do you have any habits when it comes to writing?
My routine for when I’m writing on paper is to read in the morning and write when I take my second coffee from around 2p.m. until the evening.
- Do you know how much time you have spent writing Season?
Hoo boy, no idea. But hours were more spent in the conceptualization phase of trying to imagine a particular world and particular tone. That took awhile.
- Do you improvise as the story goes, or did you know the ending before you started writing Season?
It’s usually good to leave breathing room in the story for characters to make choices on their own or to let you make more intuitive associations. But with the resources involved in making a game, outlining quite a bit is smart, just to be safe.
- Is the story of the game drawn from real events and from personal anecdotes?
It’s a mixture of things I read about, saw, or that happened to me or people I know. I find when I’m writing a detail, some little bit of text, I tend to draw on my own life to try to make it feel specific and real.
- What made you want to write this game?
It had a long gestation period, so there wasn’t a single moment of inspiration. I feel like explaining why you wrote something is always a retrospective explanation and not what you were thinking at the time. So, looking back I think on my side it came out of becoming more extroverted in a way, from traveling and reading more history, being both more worried and more attached to other places and time periods.
We hope you appreciated this little insight into Kevin’s journey, and learn some things about what it is like to be both a creative director, and a writer in games!
– Season team