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Author Topic: Writers do more than quest-writing.  (Read 2797 times)

morfiction

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Writers do more than quest-writing.
« on: Feb 09, 12, 10:11:12 AM »

Personally I don't read any of the text that pops up when I take on a quest in one of these "theme park" mmos.

It's like, "Oh, look, an NPC quest giver! Yes, I accept your mission, stop talking!" then I get the basic information for the quest when it comes down to the basics on the right side of my screen. It lists the mobs I need to kill plus the number I have to kill. Then I just return to the quest giver to be given my gold and experience points. Rinse, repeat.

And since my only "skill" if you can call that which I find worth marketing out there in the world of game content is "writing" i'm asked to write quests! So if I do manage to hash out some words, they will be ignored by the player who is in the midst of grinding things out.

So that's my mind-set. If you can't think of anything else for a writer to do than doing quests while every other facet of your production is halted...

I'd much rather help with brain-storming the project's particulars in a group rather than have one or two overlords with veto power constantly doing nothing more than A.) Complain about everyone not doing their job and B.) Vetoing the people who do turn in work.

And when you do provide me with a project, don't complain I have too many questions or whatever. I can't pull material out of my arse. I need input on every small detail I can think of so those details don't derail my creative process.

/Rant

XCalPro

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Re: Writers do more than quest-writing.
« Reply #1 on: Feb 09, 12, 10:54:29 AM »

I am also like you and feel that if I wanted to read a story I would pick up a book instead of a game. That being said there is still need for writers. Besides the long, mostly unread backstory to a game there are other places that require some writing. For instance, item descriptions, tooltips, and training levels. Even though you may not be expressing your creative writing skills, there are still parts of the game that require a lot of text to be entered. Quests do still need to be written, just more briefly.
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Chromehound

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Re: Writers do more than quest-writing.
« Reply #2 on: Feb 09, 12, 11:32:45 AM »

There's often plenty of people who enjoy the entire lore of a game and may even want to know why they're skinning those 15 rats, or bringing someone 10 wolf pelts.  Probably even some that don't read much, but like to at least see the effort put forth.  Plus there's always some long quest chains that are sometimes really fun, and it all depends on the story.  Like Heritage Quests in EQ2 if you're familiar, Class quests in tons of games, the quests you pick up for Dungeons/Raids...etc..etc. 

Sounds like you want to skip the trivial quests and just write the good ones.......though actually it sounds more like you don't really want to write at all so I'm unsure why'd you advertise as a writer, especially if you can't pull material out of your arse :P

Might need a new team, or new team leader.  Couple of Dictators at the lead positions won't be much fun, and even worse if they don't give some direction for the story they're looking for.
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morfiction

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Re: Writers do more than quest-writing.
« Reply #3 on: Feb 09, 12, 11:56:01 AM »


Sounds like you want to skip the trivial quests and just write the good ones.......though actually it sounds more like you don't really want to write at all so I'm unsure why'd you advertise as a writer, especially if you can't pull material out of your arse :P

Might need a new team, or new team leader.  Couple of Dictators at the lead positions won't be much fun, and even worse if they don't give some direction for the story they're looking for.

I'm very unskilled. But I would like to contribute to making of a game.

I've discovered writing my own books is one thing. It took years to do all that writing which amounts to one book that is unfinished after many years of working on it.

I guess I'm blocked or burned out. Or something.

LastJudge

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Re: Writers do more than quest-writing.
« Reply #4 on: Feb 09, 12, 12:27:52 PM »

Although most players might not read quests, it has to be written, it's still a better feeling to fast scroll through it or just accept than just see empty box saying you need to kill 10 wolves. But I agree that quest could be written more briefly sometimes. I want to have two kinds of quests, campaign and normal, campaign will tell the storyline and some of them will be needed to complete to unlock some stuff, normal quests will be just normal quests, I think their quest text can just be brief, but the campaign shouldn't be a novel either.
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uexilon

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Re: Writers do more than quest-writing.
« Reply #5 on: Feb 10, 12, 11:40:21 AM »

Why don't you just change the reason you write a quest?

If you write it as an instruction that can easily be replaced by the short information (about how many kills you have to make), then it won't be read in most cases. But if you give the player a reason to read it, to understand this part of the whole Story, then a good quest writer is very important. Think of it as a system that gives a player the opportunity to get special items or something like that, just because he read the story and saw that there is a secret quest included.

Give the player a reason to play, give the player a reason to learn, accept, refuse, understand the story you are telling :D

Maybe this helps to think a bit different about Quests and Quest writing.
« Last Edit: Feb 10, 12, 11:44:00 AM by uexilon »
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morfiction

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Re: Writers do more than quest-writing.
« Reply #6 on: Feb 10, 12, 11:59:40 AM »

I noticed that the new new player experience of WOW introduced with Cataclysm seems interesting enough at first.

You see alliance guards fighting wargs if you start on human side or there's a dwarf in dwarf starting zone firing upon endless waves of monsters.

But it doesn't keep that pace or excitement up for long.

Basically you just run from one NPC who is standing still in place to the next.

By contrast, I played through a starting instance on Final Fantasy XIV which was intense! You're on a ship and when you go above-decks  you have to pick off some invading monsters. Too bad my computer ran that game too slow for the main game or else I would of stuck with it...

SPayne

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Re: Writers do more than quest-writing.
« Reply #7 on: Feb 12, 12, 11:20:48 PM »

Writers should be doing more than just quest writing.  There are always smaller parts of the larger back story that need to be filled in, especially when expansions come along.

Even so, when I think of "writing" quests/missions the first thing I think of is a basic plot and not a bunch of word dialogue.  Sure, with your typical RPG quest there should at least be a small bit of dialogue from the quest giver so things don't seem weird, confusing or even campy but truly there doesn't really need to be any dialogue for a legitimate quest.  I guess what I'm getting at is that I would rather see "writers" use all their potential imagination as writers and design out the whole quest and not just write out a story or a bunch of lengthy dialogue.

Seriously, quest writers should be using story maps and story boards for scripted sequences, missions/quests and basic game plots.

A good thing about writing for games is that since it will ultimately be put into a different and interactive form for the player, game writers don't need to push out APA/ASA/MLA quality production.
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JMurdick

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Re: Writers do more than quest-writing.
« Reply #8 on: Feb 16, 12, 06:34:11 AM »

As mentioned above, there are lots of places where those with writing skills can contribute on traditional MMOs or even single-player games.  Beyond quests, you have dialogue, item descriptions, help and tutorial text, cut-scenes, and I'm sure I'm missing some.

Plus, it helps to write the background of the world in order to get names of items, places, and npcs consistent.
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xfailsafex

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Re: Writers do more than quest-writing.
« Reply #9 on: Feb 16, 12, 12:00:29 PM »

Personally I want writers to be writing the back story, or developing the main quest series.  For instance, Star Wars TOR has a main quest line for each class, which was developed by a group of writers.  I would LOVE for any of the games I help develop to have a super interesting story like that game, even if there is absolutely no quest dialog. 
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