Jared Mason

Narrative Designer for Schell Games

Jared has been with Schell Games for over ten years. During that time, he has helped launch the Mechatar toy line, Disney Fairies Online, and, most recently, the VR game I Expect You To Die. He lives in Pittsburgh with his wife and two daughters and spends his free time pretending he can still stay up past midnight to play games.

Talk Description:

Secret Story: Building the Narrative of I Expect You to Die

The narrative of I Expect You to Die took a road less traveled during its creation. What normally is done over the course of the project when it comes to story and narration had to be done in less than a week. But that week revealed to the team the importance of what they were creating in the game’s story and how they could continue to build it beyond its inception.

This talk will cover the unique challenges faced in VR storytelling, as well as the way I Expect You to Die (IEYTD) infused that storytelling with humor and brevity. The session will entail:

* Introduction to the game and how it’s played
* The process of finishing the character, story, dialogue, and voice recording in three days
* The benefits of voice acting your own writing
* Expanding the story and characters for future levels and how that opened up the world of IEYTD
* Needing to go deeper into the story by implementing an “understory” (or a B story).
* How we implemented humor and walked the line between funny and mean

There will be time for questions and answers afterward.

The hope is to give the audience insight into a standard narrative design process and how our own process varied from that standard. The act of writing and voicing your own work is also pretty unique to IEYTD, and the benefits and detriments of that experience could be informative. I also hope to leave behind a few tips about writing humor, and how writing for VR can differ from normal game experiences.

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