Videogame Scriptwriter

"I am a born storyteller and gamer. My job involves writing scenes, dialogue and prose for leading video games. I work with a team on defining the world and gameplay mechanics, but am solely responsible for developing stories with compelling, multifaceted characters that have strong motivations and consistent, dramatic arcs. I own and manage scripts and assist in recording sessions and voice direction. My career merged my two passions in life—gaming and storytelling."

Salary Range:

$48,660 - $81,300

The Tip

Start now. Your degree or diploma won’t get you where you want to go; your portfolio of work will. Don’t tell them what you can do. Show them you’ve done it.

Priority Knowledge & Skills
Evidence-based Storytelling Skills
  • Ability to use research to develop an evidence-based story

  • Ability to generate story ideas

  • Ability to identify target audiences

  • Ability to create compelling narratives across media

 

Advanced Research & Analysis Skills
  • Ability to critically analyze literature

  • Ability to synthesize key themes from multiple sources

 

Contextual Knowledge
  • Knowledge of human behaviour

  • Understanding of context and values of audiences

  • Essential understanding of topics and themes as they relate to an audience

Advanced Communication Skills
  • Formulate and defend positions

  • Sensitivity to how communications is shaped by circumstances, authorship and intended audience

  • Formulate and defend positions

  • Apply written vocabulary to audience

 

Additional Skills
  • Excel at core communication, interpersonal and organizational skills

  • Excel at transdisciplinary systems thinking, intentional curiosity and thoughtful creativity

  • Fundamental business acumen

  • Fundamentals of programming

  • Project management

Building Block Experiences
Education & Learning:
  • Bachelor of Arts (English) with a minor in computer science

  • Game Design: Art and Concepts Specialization from California Institute of the Arts via Coursera

 

"I’d always dreamed of being a game writer, but so do many other people. I followed my passion for storytelling, graphic novels and gaming into a degree in English where I focused on learning to tell a concise story. Leveraging education and learning is critical to be one step ahead of my competition."

Employment Experiences:
  • Did an internship at local game start-up. This company offered me a position upon graduation.

  • First position was as game project coordinator. Promoted to story coordinator and was mentored by lead story writer. My focus was character development.

  • Was given lead game writer role and launched an app-based game four years after graduation

  • Recruited by large gaming company to be game writer for an established series

 

"My big break happened by deciding to do an internship one summer. This single decision defined my career. It showed me what I love to do and what I am good at. Working in this start-up, I realized that to become a game writer, I needed to own the world I designed and all the characters in it. It was all up to me. When I went to a larger company, I had an advantage of having “owned” a title already; this set me apart."

Community Experiences:
  • Joined creative writing club in my community when I was 16. I led the graphic novels group, built my network and identified mentors.

  • When I am back in my hometown I host an annual gamer hackathon to mentor up-and-coming game designers

  • Was an executive on my university’s gaming club. Very active in gaming community and engaged in hackathons.

 

"Volunteering not only allows me to contribute my skills to my community, it broadens my network and relationships. The diversity of these relationships forces me out of my comfort zone."

Contextual Experiences:
  • To progress in this career, I needed to move to a city with a critical mass of gaming companies

 

"I knew I had to move, but I am only three hours away from my hometown by plane. Balancing my career and life is a challenge and there is no “right” answer when it comes to moving for work. You need to make the decision that feels right for you."

Relationships:
  • Cold-called a founder of start-up in my first year of university. This cold call led to my internship and ten years later the founder remains a friend and mentor.

 

"All relationships require risk taking. The biggest challenge was that first phone call I made. I realized that if I didn’t make the call, someone else would. I took a leap and never regretted it."