My name is Joannes, and I started this blog in 2009 when I first heard of the role of narrative design in gaming. I have always held a keen interest in games, and more specifically, in their stories. Having mostly played games where story represents an important factor, I enjoy analysing the way it is implemented and presented. Along the way, I've started focusing more on writing a series of scripts that lampoon stories in games. If you'd like to get in touch, please use the contact form. Alternatively, you can find me on Twitter @playthroughline.
Here are some of the things I've done and only mostly regret.
The Editing Room
I've made no secret of the fact that my scripts take their inspiration from The Editing Room, which comically abridges movies and ridicules their perceived flaws and idiosyncracies. When that site's founder sent out a call for contributors in 2011, I knew I couldn't not throw my sarcasm hat into the ring. He liked my first addition enough to turn me into a regular contributor, and I've written a bunch since then.
- The Adjustment Bureau
- Rise of the Planet of the Apes
- In Time
- The Bourne Legacy
- Jack Reacher
- The Counselor
- Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
- Ex Machina
- Jason Bourne
- War for the Planet of the Apes
In 2015, I was made aware of the existence of TelePlayTime, a website that does for television shows what I do for videogames here at Playthroughline. I was contacted by the site's owner and that led to me contributing a series of scripts on the final episodes of AMC's Mad Men, one of my favourite shows.
- Mad Men S07E08: Severance
- Mad Men S07E09: New Business
- Mad Men S07E10: The Forecast
- Mad Men S07E11: Time & Life
- Mad Men S07E12: Lost Horizon
- Mad Men S07E13: The Milk and Honey Route
- Mad Men S07E14: Person to Person
After TelePlayTime went on hiatus, I was allowed to continue my recap work over at HappyNiceTimePeople, a site run by my The Editing Room co-author Rick Lewis. So far, I've recapped the entire second season of True Detective in the style you've all come to tolerate.
- True Detective S02E01: The Western Book of the Dead
- True Detective S02E02: Night Finds You
- True Detective S02E03: Maybe Tomorrow
- True Detective S02E04: Down Will Come
- True Detective S02E05: Other Lives
- True Detective S02E06: Church in Ruins
- True Detective S02E07: Black Maps and Motel Rooms
- True Detective S02E08: Omega Station
I try to accompany every game's script with a more in-depth post that takes a deeper (read: less caustic) look at one or more of the game's specific features. I've submitted several of those to Gamasutra, which have been picked up as Featured Posts. These have usually led to interesting discussions in the commentary threads.
From 2010 to 2011, I was a volunteer news and features editor for GameQuarter, a Dutch gaming site. I provided wide news coverage as well as reviews and several features for them. They're all in Dutch, but I did get to review some major AAA releases. I also solely represented GameQuarter at 2011's Eurogamer Expo.
While I greatly enjoyed my work at GameQuarter, I realised that I preferred to let my thoughts be known in the Queen's English. In late 2011, I made the decision to answer BeefJack's call for new writers, and I was closely involved with them for almost two years. Towards the end of my tenure, I embodied a senior quality control position in which I oversaw the work of the other writers. In addition to regular news shifts, I contributed quite a few reviews and features as well. I was also part of BeefJack's presence at 2012's and 2013's Eurogamer Expo.
- Author archive (only lists news posts)
Later on, BeefJack would transition from a news site to a fully-fledged development and PR studio. Their first major project was Iron Fish, a psychological horror game set at the bottom of the Atlantic (which is a great way of giving your game depth). I was brought in as a narrative designer to flesh out the story and write all the dialogues, data logs, backstories, plot points, and the like. The game is now available via Steam.
GriN is an Antwerp-based developer that primarily creates online and browser-based games. In 2009, I contributed a large amount of narrative design work for Encounter, one of their self-managed projects. Encounter is a persistent-world space trading game in the vein of EVE Online and Elite that can be played from a browser. The game's class system required four distinct factions that could all both co-operate and combat each other. As part of a complete story and universe bible, I drafted a narrative backdrop that catered to this particular setup.
In 2013, I worked with them on a game called Woolfe, an episodic platformer/brawler set in the Red Riding Hood fairy tale but with that customary dark twist thrown in. I was in charge of finetuning an established story foundation and writing dialogue and voice-over elements.