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Article - 'Interesting Plots' by Angroth

An item about Plots/Characters posted on Aug 8, 2003

Blurb

A short article concerning how to write interesting plots while avoiding predefined clichés

Body

My article Avoiding Clichés talked more on this subject.
This was really just a little extended piece that I thought you might find helpful.

The most vital key for an interesting plot suprisingly enough is the character that accompanies you with it.
If the main character is a boring person who the player can’t relate to then it won’t make the story a nice experience. The only reason FF7 worked was because it delved into Cloud’s past and you learnt so much about him, and the story was an unbeatable epic adventure!

So, what makes a plot interesting? Something humorous can do the job. But usually something unique and deep but not as deep as the atlantic ocean. If it’s too complex then it will only work against you.
However a relitively simple story is sufficient. It should have its twists which will most likely turn the heading of the story in a different direction.
If a story is merely about some silly little quarrels it can usually be bland. Maybe if it were only to start off like this then that’s okay, but if the plot only affects a handful of people it isn’t often interesting.
It doesn’t need a grand epic quest whereby the universe must be saved, but if your hero was seiging a castle for the death of his brother then you might be more interested than if a little girl lost her doll to her evil step sister.
It’s hard to get a story everyone likes because everyone is different and it may appeal to many people but there will always be a few people that think your idea sucks.
If you could gather some other opinions and idea’s on what’s interesting in a story then, you could do a chart and see what is most popular then use it for your own game.
However not even I would do something like that, but I should because I would most likely end up with a really interesting game!

Generally it’s not too difficult to get a good story. Writing out your story and re-drafting it comes in handy, because with the story complete you can make future references.
Whereas if you were making the story as you go it might not be consistant and you might contredict yourself.
I know it seems boring and half the time I can never be bothered to write out stories either but it doesn’t have to be a novel or anything.
And by the time you have written some lines you get into the swing of it quickly and go into a writing mode.