Posted by Greg Kasavin on October 26, 2010
UPDATE: Show’s over and we had a great time! If you tuned in, thanks for watching, and if you missed it, then you can watch it on-demand right here.
On behalf of all of us at Supergiant Games, we invite you to join us at Giant Bomb this Friday, October 29 at 3:30pm PST for the premiere episode of Building the Bastion. This live show will take you behind the scenes of our up-and-coming studio while providing an in-depth look at the making of Bastion and insight into life at a small independent game developer. This is a 30-minute live broadcast, available for free to all viewers!
The show will include a first look at never-before-seen new content for Bastion, as well as a first look at never-before-seen old content for Bastion in the form of early gameplay and narrative prototypes. A portion of the show will be dedicated to questions from the audience, which will be taken from Giant Bomb’s members-only chat room. […]
Posted by Supergiant Games on October 26, 2010
Occasionally we’re going to use this space to bring you insight into the thought process and development process behind our first game, Bastion. To kick things off, here’s a detailed look at how we’re using our reactive narration technique to give the game its specific tone. This article was first posted on Greg Kasavin’s personal blog and we’re reprinting it here.
On September 2, I officially joined the small team at Supergiant Games as their creative director, and together we showed our game Bastion for the first time at PAX in Seattle. The response was almost overwhelming, and on a personal level it was one of the most rewarding moments of my professional career. Part of the reason for this is that Bastion is a pure expression of many ideas that are close to my heart – ideas about games, stories, and other things that matter to me – so the enthusiastic response really meant a lot. Granted, my contributions to the project are only just beginning in earnest, but because I was involved in developing the original concept back when my colleagues and I parted ways with Electronic Arts in August of last year, I feel much closer to this game than any other thing I’ve worked on. For now, I wanted to explain how we’re approaching the game’s use of storytelling through narration.
Narration in Bastion
In film, narration is one of the most misused and mood-killing techniques out there, for its unique ability to eliminate the type of ambiguity that adds richness to scenes and characters. While I’ve often fantasized about being able to read people’s minds as a superpower, if movies have taught me anything it’s that knowing people’s inner monologue would make life far less interesting for someone as neurotic as me.
Nevertheless, Bastion uses real-time narration extensively. Its purpose is to deliver story and exposition, and to build atmosphere, investment, and immersion in close partnership with the gameplay. The narration wasn’t part of the original game concept. It was born in a flash of inspiration (through a development process that enables such happy accidents to occur), […]