Writing for Computer Games

Subject: Writing for Computer Games
From: "Darren Barefoot" <darren -dot- barefoot -at- capeclear -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 17 Dec 2001 14:43:20 -0000


I've permanently deleted the email, but late last week someone had
enquired about other kinds of writing in the software industry. Her (for
I believe it was a 'she') list of possible jobs included writing for
computer games. I have since permanently deleted the email in question,
but thought I'd briefly offer up my experience:

I've done two "contracts" with gaming companies. The first was a few
years ago and was actually an internship with a largish Vancouver-based
company that made PlayStation and PC games. My main task was documenting
an internal animation tool with which the animators (of whom there were
probably 50) used to build backgrounds. Additionally, I wrote some
marketing collateral and short position papers, both used to pitch game

For the second, which is a current contract, is writing dialogue for a
sports game for the Xbox, Game Cube and PlayStation 2. Both the
commentator and the characters have dialogue, and I head up a team of
four writers who write all of the speech "comments" in the game. This
sounds sexier than it actually is, as I've spent many an evening
wracking my brain for 40 different terse ways to say "the ball has
deflected off the post and gone out of play". I've learned a lot about
the game development process and it's certainly been a welcome diversion
from documenting software development tools.

Hope that sheds a little light. Thanks. DB.

Darren Barefoot
Technical Writer
Cape Clear Software

You're built like a car
You got a hubcap
Diamond star halo
You're built like a car
Oh yeah.
-"Bang a Gong (Get It On)", T. Rex

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