Dan Pinchbeck

A short video on how to make videogame spaces for storytelling

How does a videogame introduce story to the player? Better yet, how does a game invoke emotion in the constrained physical world space of a game? We’ve seen it done in ham-fisted fashion: see the much maligned “Press F to Pay Your Respects” from Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, or consider the traditional “fight the baddies now pause for some story” route that many other big-budget games go. “We’re creating an architecture for a story to exist in” In a video from the Future of Storytelling series, Dear Esther (2012) director Dan Pinchbeck talks about how games often take for granted one…


Mini-documentary on Never Alone shows the power of inclusive game-making

Once in a while, a game comes along that changes what people think the medium is capable of, both inside and outside the community. Never Alone (Kisima Ingitchuna), known as the first Alaska Native videogame, is one of those experiences. More than just a beautiful platformer, Never Alone explores Iñupiat culture, retelling some of the tribe’s time-tested stories and traditions. Through a process the team calls “inclusive development,” the Cook Inlet Tribal Council (and spokesperson Amy Fredeen in particular) teamed up with Upper One Games studio to preserve and share their isolated culture with the rest of the world. Demonstrating just how wildly the experiment succeeded, Never Alone has…


The beautiful augmented reality dreamscape of Wuxia the Fox

Eight years ago, around the time when the word “transmedia” first started getting tossed around, Jonathan Belisle began collecting his dreams into an ill-defined storyworld. “I started writing the story of a young girl named Oremia, who dreamed about whales. It was nothing structured. Mostly an aggregation of random ideas with the same characters. I thought it was an interesting narrative path, and it really inspired lots of film scripts. During that time I was also creating this series of live performances that used networks, physical installations, and media to create immersive events where the audience felt trapped—but happy to stay—in the…