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Iron Tower RPG Roundtable: Setting, story and characters

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Iron Tower RPG Roundtable: Setting, story and characters

Interview - posted by Ausir on Sat 24 May 2008, 03:39:08

Tags: Vince D. Weller

Vault "Vince" Dweller has interviewed various cRPG designers on their approach to the setting, story and characters a the Iron Tower Studio forums.
Chris Avellone: When approaching world design (and with more recent IPs I’ve been working on at Obsidian), I usually begin with “what do I want the player to do that’s the coolest thing ever?” Whether that’s allowing the player to convince a mutated dominant lifeform out to enslave the future that his master plan is wrong and talk him into committing suicide, great. If that’s allowing the player to stand in a fortress built out of a thousand lifetimes of regrets on a plane of negative energy and argue with the possibilities my life about why it’s important I be allowed to die, great. If I want to stand in an ancient elven citadel shattered by magics and provoke two half-demons and their army into battle to prevent the destruction of the Ten Towns, so be it.

Asking “what would be cool to do as a player” is then followed by, “okay, what sort of framework could I build around the world to build up to that cool moment(s)?” World building is similar to story building in some respects… if I want to make a game where I can voyage inside an android’s brain, help a pregnant alley give birth, or a world where I can weave death sounds of the beasts I kill into audio-inspired spellcraft, that cool sample moment of player experience is the starting point, and I start constructing a framework around the world to support and give more power to those moments.

You can read the rest of the responses at the Iron Tower forum.

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