Becoming A Video Game Writer

and the steps you need to take to get there!

What is a Video Game Writer?

it means you write the scripts, plotlines, and dialogue for video games! you map out the plot, the ideas, the character development and script for the entire game. you give the characters something to do, something to say, and help advance the story along. it is an important job, and can only be done by creative and original individuals with patience and persistance.

What Education Do You Need?

considering video games are works of fiction, and you cannot purchase creativity, there is not a set way on how to become a writer. but acknowledging that, it is always good to look into a creative writing degree or a degree surrounding the sort of video games you would like to be writing for - if you are into historical games, consider studying history; if you are into science-fiction, consider studying theology and chemistry! in the end, the best form of qualification is PRACTICE. sitting in a class will not help you become a good fiction writer. you will need to keep writing, keep thinking of ideas, keep turning those ideas into something wonderful. you should collect a portfolio of your best works to prepare for a job opportunity.
Assassin's Creed III Television Commercial [North America]

What's Work Like for a Writer?

video game writers (and developers in general) work either for game production companies such as Ubisoft or NaughtyDog, or they work as self-employed freelancers. they work indoors in offices and studios if they are employed by companies, with a group of other developers working on the same project. if they are self-employed, they usually work from home. regardless of where you work, you will be spending a lot of time in front of a computer screen, and interacting with the rest of the team - including programmers, artists, and project managers.work hours are usually 9 to 10 hours a day, 40 to 50 hours a week. weekend work and overtime is common, especially if a deadline or conference is coming up.

What's the Yearly Income?

payscale varies widely for the video game industry, and the amount depends on experience, talent, employer, project, and the role you play. for a writer, it varies immensely. for one script you could get only a couple hundred, but for another you could get thousands - of course, that is for a freelancer. for a writer working on an established franchise such as assassins creed or call of duty, you could earn hundreds of thousands a year just based on royalties and popularity. it is much like writing for films or television, and it is a very competitive business.

PLUSSES

if you love video games and writing, this is a wonderful job for you. you get to create an imaginary world and see it come to life before your eyes, and be very involved in the process. if you are experienced or very skilled in the field, your salary could be mindblowing.

MINUSES

for some, it may be difficult to come up with unique and original ideas - it is hard to come up with raw material, and only a few people come by the ability easily. also, if you are no;t very experienced or freelance, your pay might not even be able to support you for a month, let alone for the rest of your life.

Related Careers

fiction writer, film and television screenwriting, other video game developing work.