Some Just Cause 2 Fanfic (sort of, this is actually important)

Posted by nintendoeats (5975 posts) -

I'm taking a new tack to my "prep for GDC" thing. I'm just going to ask: What do you think of this?
 
(Please note that is an UNFINISHED website. The structure is there, but its not organized with content yet)

Today's role was to take a game that isn't terribly narrative heavy and add to it, trying to fit into the existing themes and game mechanics. The thing that I realized when starting this exercise was that all modern games already have narratives. What I wound up with is a new section for Just Cause 2 that establishes a new character (who I am setting up to be a boss, because of course you don't actually kill the White Tiger in the game and that will make him very cross) and gets you from one point in the story to another.
 
I think its at least at JC2s level and maybe a bit better. Its no GTA IV, but I think that it does establish what I wanted: I understand the constraints of a video game and how to fit narrative into these types of frameworks.
 
And there is a payoff at the end even if you think the rest of this write up is boring.

#1 Posted by nintendoeats (5975 posts) -

I'm taking a new tack to my "prep for GDC" thing. I'm just going to ask: What do you think of this?
 
(Please note that is an UNFINISHED website. The structure is there, but its not organized with content yet)

Today's role was to take a game that isn't terribly narrative heavy and add to it, trying to fit into the existing themes and game mechanics. The thing that I realized when starting this exercise was that all modern games already have narratives. What I wound up with is a new section for Just Cause 2 that establishes a new character (who I am setting up to be a boss, because of course you don't actually kill the White Tiger in the game and that will make him very cross) and gets you from one point in the story to another.
 
I think its at least at JC2s level and maybe a bit better. Its no GTA IV, but I think that it does establish what I wanted: I understand the constraints of a video game and how to fit narrative into these types of frameworks.
 
And there is a payoff at the end even if you think the rest of this write up is boring.

#2 Posted by Akrid (1356 posts) -

It's definitely better than Just Cause 2 level of narrative, but that's not really all that difficult, hah ha. It feels slightly ill-fitting as well, but mostly because all efforts went into making the world in that game and not decent cutscenes. 
 
I like the base idea, but there are a ton of errors. 

  • In the second paragraph, the first mention to the knife and soldier should be "a" not "the". Better yet, some way of indicating she's a woman and a central character at that point. You can re-structure to keep the same timing, but do not use she as the first indicator that the soldier is female. Really confusing. 
  • Descriptors of the man and the soldier should be used, using such generic terms makes it difficult to follow. "Man in red" "Female soldier". Since this is more of a script, do you even need to obfuscate their identities?
  • The description of her being yanked back should be lightened. It's the artist's job to know what a person being yanked backwards should look like. 
  • Rico "Flings" her, but to where? A few metres? She'd get back up and be a jerk. A mile? Then she'd be dead. I assume she has some importance, just put in a bit of her getting KO'd by a wall or something.

“Clearly you do not intend to, or you would be dead right now.”    

  • Shouldn't this be something like "You would be dead by now if I really thought you were going to pull the trigger" or "I wouldn't do that if I were you". Except, y'know, better. Confusing otherwise. 
  • Change large man to Eduardo's goon or something. Again, too generic.

The camera moves behind Rico, who looks up at the large man, who has not moved since being revealed.

  •    This is almost a style thing, but why waste the long camera move when you could have the guy walk into the shot while they're talking and prod Rico or something. 

A moment later Eduardo walks out dressed in the soldier’s uniform. His suit is now on the soldier’s body, which he dumps in the middle of the roof.

“You are a popular man Mister Nicol.” Rico says, upon which Eduardo immediately cuts him off as he produces the soldier’s pistol.

“Never,” He fires 2 shots squarely into the soldier’s face “Ever call me that.” He throws the body off the roof and proceeds past Rico.    

  • This took me an insanely long time to figure out what was going on. Most of it could be fixed by just adding dead to the last mention of the soldier.
  • You're kind of abusing the rule of attaching an action to a line of dialogue.
 
And that's just the first page and a bit! I'm not saying you should fix these problems, you got shit to do. Just take it under advisement. 
 
It would also really help if you could tell me at what point in development would this be used, and who would be referring to it. The storyboard artist?
#3 Posted by kingzetta (4307 posts) -

sad

#4 Posted by nintendoeats (5975 posts) -
@Akrid: This being an unedited bit, that is exactly the type of thing that I would be fixing in the final draft. Even looking through the specific bits that you highlighted I'm seeing things that could read better.
 
The thing about writing is that you never know if something is really readable until you get that kind of critique.
 
I can't say what point in development this would be written or used because, well, I'm only generally familiar with the development process for these elements. I've done some reading that gives me sort of an idea, but my primary goal at GDC is to learn about game development and figure out what type of role I can/want to play. This is why I'm focusing on writing exercises that establish my understanding of concepts, but is not up to any kind of industry standard (though from what I've read, there IS no industry standard for narrative design right now).
 
Anyway, most of that criticism is perfectly reasonable stuff that will get integrated into the second draft.
#5 Posted by AhmadMetallic (18955 posts) -

you ruin the game when you enhance it's narrative 
 
its meant to be shitty, it goes along nicely with the groundbreaking action and marvelous open world

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