On this major unannounced sequel, I joined the Visceral team as Lead Writer at a time of crisis. The original game had been a brawler, but now EA wanted something different and the project was deep into production.
Working with the Creative Director, we reimagined the sequel as an UNCHARTED-like adventure game, and successfully got buy off from Execs. With pressure off, the team was able to create a unique narrative design that drew on Immersive Theater, dream research, and the life of Dante Alighieri.
Although I wrote a 300-page script for a 12-level game, the much-loved project got postponed, in order to move the budget to another game which also got postponed. Such is the way of video game production.
But if enough children believe and clap their hands, maybe we can bring it to life one day!
When I first met my partner-in-crime on this interactive live action Virtual Reality series, he pitched me an idea that I knew was a brilliant mechanic for VR. I immediately signed on.
Over the next year, we built a world together on the edge of tomorrow, creating plausible technology and history. We charted out a complex narrative structure over 7 episodes and characters with deeply intersecting lives.
As Narrative Designer, I created a suite of new mechanics for VR to deepen Player agency and allow the viewer to uncover the story.
The pilot script brought in funding from Nokia to shoot a VR trailer, which went on to win THE 2016 PROTO AWARD for Best Live Action Experience, and screen at CINEQUEST and the SAN FRANCISCO FILM FESTIVAL.
We are in negotiations to fund the entire series in 2017.
I came onto Bungie's DESTINY — one of the most ambitious games ever made — at the moment of transition from prototype to shippable game. Planets and aliens had been designed, but levels had to be built and a story had to be told.
I moved my family to Seattle to join the Core Creative Team, working in a stellar Writers Room to forge the season arcs and write the Cinematics. I embedded with Design to create missions and dream up environments.
As the game neared shipping, one of the most loved features was in danger of being dropped — The Dead Ghosts: collectibles with connected stories. I dived in deep to guide a team of designers, artists, riggers and writers to bring this rich mythology to life.
CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Working late nights to hide the Dead Ghosts in the most impossible to find spots all around the DESTINY universe.
I've always loved zombies, but not because of the zombies. At the core, these stories are about identity, about who we are after all the norms — jobs, taxes, families — have been stripped away.
When Telltale invited me to help create their WALKING DEAD: MICHONNE, I jumped at the chance. I was the first writer on, joining Creative Execs and key partners from Skybound in the Writers Room to develop the core concepts. Though the game grew with multiple teams, I got to come back and help finish the season, writing some of the final scenes that were most personal for me.
When I was asked back to help build WALKING DEAD: SEASON THREE, you can imagine my grin. I joined the Core Creative Team to carry Episodes 1 and 2 from treatment to VO, and forged the Narrative Design for some of the major sequences.
CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Seriously? All of it!
When I flew to Montreal to help Ubisoft with ASSASSIN'S CREED 2, the massive and respected worldwide hit, the game was nine months from ship without a script — and half the game levels had yet to be designed. Needless to say, I rolled up my sleeves.
Over the next few months, I worked at top speed to write half the 600-page gameplay script, alternating levels with the original writer. I joined the Core Creative Team to design the back-half of the game, and worked with amazing Level Designers to bring them to life.
Favorite part: Speed-reading dusty library books on Renaissance Florence, and tearing through bios of da Vinci and Machiavelli to write them as fully fleshed characters.
"We just lost our Lead Writer of Episode 2 and he only left us a beat sheet. Episode 1 still hasn't found the voice of the series, and we don't even know if it's for adults or kids. We've got an all-star cast, but they're recording in three weeks! You want the job?" — Yes! Yes, I do.
For Telltale's wildly successful MINECRAFT: STORY MODE, I worked with an incredible team of writers and designers to quickly shape a complex interactive script. Working with the best Concept Artists and Character Designers, we established three entirely new worlds and invented a slew of major characters for the series -- all on an tight schedule.
CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Creating the character of MAGNUS for Corey Feldman. Reaching back into my GOONIES memories to imagine his voice — and then getting to hear him knock my dialogue out of the park.
I came to Telltale's GAME OF THRONES as a major fan of the HBO series, but that wasn't enough. George RR Martin's universe is ocean deep. We weren't writing an IP spin-off, I discovered, we were practically writing Historical Fiction.
I joined an amazing team of writers to build this incredible series for over a year. I led episodes, I closed episodes, I parachuted in for specific scenes, I rewrote an entire character's final arc, I led Narrative Design on major sequences. When Season Two started up, I was one of the first writers on, plotting out storylines and advancements in design.
By the end of an intense year, we had all become encyclopedias of ICE AND FIRE lore.
CAREER HIGHLIGHT: Writing so much of fan-favorite character ASHER FORRESTER. Scripting his first scene my first day on the job — and writing his last scene over a year later.
When CAPCOM hired me to help bring a celebrated Japanese game maker's vision of a Time Travel game to life, it was a true Page One creation. Beginning with just a concept (and a skilled translator), we worked one-on-one to imagine a world into being, creating unique time travel mechanics and conjuring up deep fiction.
We secured a solid Design Team with a GDD that made sense of the complex branching structure, and I embedded with the team to shepherd the game from document to vertical slice.
This unannounced game garnered a glowing response from the CAPCOM Execs. Unfortunately, like so many promising games, it never made it out of development, but it remains one of my favorite projects.