Writing Process — Guild Wars 2 Forums
Home ArenaNet Forum Chats January 2019: LWS4 Episode 5

Writing Process

I was curious if you can offer insight into the story writing process. You tend to rotate the cast out every few episodes, but how exactly do you choose which characters to focus on and why? Is it simply a matter of "we haven't seen x, y, and z for a while, so we'll bring them back in for a bit!" Or is it more related to fan popularity and plot necessity?

Do you have any sort of "word budget?" I have heard from other game writers that there's a maximum number of words they get for the whole game, and so all the dialogue they write for the world/story has to fall below that number. Do you have a similar system, or likewise a certain number "main characters" per episode?



  • Talindra.4958Talindra.4958 Member ✭✭✭✭

    I think they evolve as they go...

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  • edited January 15, 2019

    We have a per-episode budget that means both line limits for voice acting and a limit on the number of actors (and which actors) we can bring in. Character choice is first determined by which characters we think will best serve story goals, including balancing who we haven't seen in a while and those with unfinished arcs, and then adjusted to fit budget. Sometimes an actor's schedule can't accommodate us, and we'll have to rewrite the scripts without that character. Hopefully, in those situations, you can't tell. We also have wordcount for unvoiced text. If you can imagine a fragile, extremely complicated Rube Goldberg machine, that's pretty close. And Eve's wizardry is what keeps it all working smoothly.

    Lily Yu
    Narrative Designer

  • @Lily Yu.9467 said:
    We also have wordcount for unvoiced text.

    I can understand the limitations on voicing side of things, but why is there a word count limitation?

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