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The unexpected creative genesis of Her Story

"If all your ideas are coming from movies, that can be a problem. An artist has already gone out into the world and compressed a lot of information to create that film."
“If all your ideas are coming from movies, that can be a problem. An artist has already gone out into the world and compressed a lot of information to create that film. If that’s your sole influence, all you’re doing is adding more and more compression.”

- Her Story creator Sam Barlow

An excellent new interview at The Guardian delves deeply into the creative influences and process for Her Story, the much-lauded police procedural video game created by Sam Barlow.

In the interview, Barlow talks about wanting to write a police procedural -- but avoiding watching the huge number of films or television shows in the form and instead concentrating on primary materials (real police interviews) and reference materials aimed at investigators.

“Academics tend to categorize, break things down, come up with systems of reference. They dig down into the systemic layer of stuff. That gives you a fresh insight, a new way of looking a things. Vocational manuals are written by people with deep knowledge and understanding, there are real world examples, step by step guides, it’s a different perspective full of information and ideas,” Barlow says.

The full interview covers his other influences, including a desire to rehabilitate the '90s full-motion video game, and how a desire to better understand his family members lead to an interivew-style gameplay mechanic. Then, there's also the influence of sci-fi author JG Ballard. 

Read the full thing over at the Guardian if you want to know more about the IGF grand prize-winning game's creative origins. We also have an interview with Barlow that is worth checking out, as well as a write-up of his GDC 2016 talk

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