A new course on interactive storytelling will soon be available, overseen by a former lead from famed narrative studio Quantic Dream.
Caroline Marchal was lead game designer on Heavy Rain and Beyond: Two Souls, and last year founded new UK developer Interior Night - a company that aims to design games that appeal to as broad an audience as Breaking Bad.
For her new course, Marchal has partnered with John Yorke, a TV producer that has overseen shows such as Wolf Hall, Shameless, Life on Mars and Eastenders. He is also author of a book on the nature of storytelling, something he has used as the basis for multiple online courses.
Story for Video Games will be a seven-week program that participants can take online. It will be taught in small groups and encompass both theory and practice, using examples from titles such as Uncharted and Life Is Strange (and no doubt Marchal's own past projects).
"Only 20 per cent of players complete video games, but 60 to 70 per cent complete narrative games," Marchal said in a statement announcing the course. "Story - above anything else, the need to know what happens next - is a great incentive to keep playing.
"The vast majority of games, regardless of their genre, are based on some kind of story. They all need meaning and context. As a writer you need to master not only the fundamental principles of great narrative - but also the specific techniques that adapt that knowledge to games."
Both Marchal and Yorke will be discussing storytelling in games at GDC, and you can find out more about the course via the latter's website.
Last year, we spoke to Marchal about the power of smaller studios to advance the concept of narrative in games. Her studio was recently signed by Sega, which will publish its first game.