We were on location at Nordic Game 2019 and while there, we had a quick chat with industry icon Warren Spector, mainly about narrative structure and Otherside Entertainment's anticipated System Shock 3, but also about Google Stadia and the past and potential future of Disney in video games. Spector is known for his narrative design and during our interview, he had plenty to share regarding just that.
Prior to the interview, we listened to Spector talk about shared ownership, and when asked about it, he explained it further:
"If you look at all my games they've basically been the same game. Different content of course, but I've been trying for the last 36 years to empower players to tell their own stories. What shared authorship means is that there's a dialogue between player and developer where the developer provides a context for player action, the what and why of what you're doing, but the players get to own the 'minute-to-minute', so the 'I did this, then this happened'".
Narrative structure and design aside, all eyes are on System Shock 3 right now, and rightfully so. While we didn't get much information out of Spector, we did learn something new, but perhaps unsurprising.
"I'm not ready to talk too much about System Shock 3, but I think it's safe to say that it will allow players to tell their own stories and create unique experiences. That I will always do, I have no interest in making games that don't do that", Spector explained, and continued; "If I were ever in a position where I had to stop making games like that I would stop making games".