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Borderlands 2 writer shares advice at GDC 2015's Narrative Summit

Anthony Burch's talk on valuing great characters over great plot points will be part of the GDC 2015 Game Narrative Summit, a series of frank talks on the topic from leading industry experts.
Gearbox Software's Anthony Burch believes that, contrary to popular opinion, most people don't care about saving the world in games: they'd rather spend time with a well-written little girl who's learning to cope with grief. At GDC 2015, he'll lay out his case and offer some advice on how you can start writing better characters right away. Burch served as a writer on the outlandish first-person shooter Borderlands 2 and its ensuing post-release DLC packs, and his experience suggests that people tend to respond more positively (and are more likely to give their attention and money) to character-centric DLC, rather than content that pushes the narrative of your game world forward with "epic" plots and sequences. By analyzing rough sales figures and critical response to Borderlands 2's DLC, as well as exploring the process of those DLC's creation, Burch will try to convince you to lean on character and charm rather than plot and lore when you write for games in his upcoming GDC 2015 talk, Plot is Dumb, Character is Cool: Writing for DLC. Burch's talk will be part of the conference's Game Narrative Summit, a series of frank talks on the topic from leading experts in the industry. It's just one of eight Summits that will take place Monday, March 2nd and Tuesday, March 3rd at the Moscone Center in San Francisco during the first two days of GDC 2015. If talking about the creative and financial aspects of storytelling in games isn't up your alley, don't worry -- conference officials look forward to announcing more GDC 2015 sessions spanning a diverse array of game industry issues in the months ahead. A list of all announced talks is available in the online GDC 2015 Session Scheduler, where you can begin to build your conference week and later export it to the up-to-the-minute GDC Mobile App, coming soon. For now, don't miss the opportunity to save money by registering early -- the deadline to register for passes at a discounted rate is January 21, 2015. GDC 2015 itself will take place March 2-6 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. For more information on GDC 2015, visit the show's official website, or subscribe to regular updates via Facebook, Twitter, or RSS. Gamasutra and GDC are sibling organizations under parent UBM Tech.

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