Falerin -> =Story and Art= Storyline Developers' Notes (2/6/2010 14:13:45)
Greetings to you my friends.
It has been a while since I have done a comprehensive set of storyline development notes and this will be the first time that I am doing one for the new Design Notes project here for AdventureQuest.
As many of you may know I do not work in isolation here at AE. In addition to the many other talented developers who work in every other aspect of our games I am lucky enough in that I have been allowed to gather my own team specifically for the development of storyline.
The boundaries of the team are blurry in typical AE style because often people who are crucial in other roles assist in the story development process as well. Individuals like Zephyros and Aelthai are critical to the story development process and they have had a considerable hand in the work that I do. Zephyros mentions his quest writing activities in his Development and Balance post where he notes:
I dabble in quest-writing. I'm to blame for Assassin and the updated Dragonslayer class quest. I have a few other personal writing projects on the backburner, too.
All of this is code for just how much it is that Zephyros does do with my team. Zephyros is one of the first persons to assist me in editorial concerns and in fleshing out my ideas, and one of the last to help with finished polish. There are indeed times that as a release is preparing to be put in game he and I are sending files back and forth and tweaking dialog up until the 11th hour.
In addition to the more well known AE staff persons who work with me my core storyline team is composed of:
Art is likewise a team effort, with very many talented individuals giving of their time to provide art, and to do layout art for individual events. Core members of our art team include:
However, just as with storyline many others are called upon to contribute art for individual projects. Arklen, Tathlin, and Kaley have in particular been quite helpful at various junctures. Zephyros himself often makes last minute tweaks to art, just as he does to story, as we put together a weeks release, and even I am occasionally called upon to dabble into the more visual aspects of things.
I tend to prefer restricting myself to the layout art and animation side of things but like everything else exceptions exist.
The point is that we have a team and we work as a team. In point of fact many of the developers that you see working on the other AE games are no less involved in the AQ and WF development side of things. At the very least the entire AE team is involved in playtesting and commentary of new content before it goes live.
The team's many talents and keen eyes have been invaluable in the process of developing storyline for AE. They have offered fresh insights and perspectives that have enabled this to be a truly pleasurable process. Like our players, each of us is an individual, and this combination of individual perspectives is crucial in producing the best we have to offer.
I would be remiss if I did not mention the individual whose tireless efforts and vision helps to keep this team going. Galanoth is a crucial part of our team dynamic, when he is not knocking together the first drafts of content for a release himself, he is talking me through doing the very same. He is called upon at various junctures to do just about every job we have to do, and on top of that to organize the efforts of all of the rest of the team cohesively.
Galanoth's considerable talent and great leadership helps to organize our ideas and keep things moving smoothly and it is an absolute pleasure to work for him.
In coming weeks the full measure of this team work will become even more important. We have changed our storyline development paradigm in order to try to meet the many conflicting demands that exist. We are making an attempt through backstory and gradual revelations to link many unrelated smaller stories together over time to tell the story of Lore entire. These smaller cycles are contained but things we learn or discover during each of these streams may be very important much later when they come together into the river.
Even things that seem punny and abjectly silly have the potential of being very important or making very significant changes. The DrakelCube P parody is an example of this in action, as it brought back a very significant NPC from the dead one that before this event was only refered to in game in whispers.
As to the individual cycles, we have some very exciting stories to tell:
Return with us to the Hall of Memories for a disturbing encounter that will begin to reveal much about the events that shaped that realm from what it once was. An encounter that despite taking place in a shadow memory of the past threatens the present in very direct ways.
Battle against the threat of rampaging cybernetic organisms whose terrible actions might force a very reluctant Famine to become active in Lore again in the parodylicious "Germinator: Plantation", a tribute not only to the obvious but also to the world of infomercials in all their sordid glory. But wait there's more....
Discover the City of Deren, the capital of the continent of the same name and take part in an unfolding of the many mysteries that land has to offer...
All this while the ongoing meteor shower still threatens not one Lore but two. As winter moves firmly into spring the boundaries of realities collide; and by the middle of the vernal season, you dear player, are called forth to the other side in a chase across realities to stop Krieger and his Bizzare Flecks.... but not before a few hilarious mishaps on the way...
Oh, there is so much more to tell, but.... we have to keep something back.
Stay tuned as we will reveal more details and thoughts in the coming Design Note entries.
Oh. One last thing, some of you have expressed worry about what is going on with Falerin... Your worries are well founded. Though here is a story that is a very long way off indeed, it is an exciting one, I assure you. As you become more familiar with Falerin, and his motivations and desires over time, you will gain further insights into just what fate is coming for our dear Loremaster... Muhahahaha......
Next Up: Explaining nomenclature and terms the team uses as part of the Storyline Development Process