Hey, I’m Danny, writer and narrative helper-outer.
Career Thus Far
I took a circuitous route into the gaming world, but I’ve always been a writer in some shape or form. I studied Literature & Film at uni, where I was introduced to some weird as hell animators, (nearly) learned to read ye olde English (etc) and became obsessed with Juvenalian satire. After I graduated I sold my soul for a few years to marketing, branding and advertising. It wasn’t very creative but it taught me a lot about writing snappy and fast.
I hustled like crazy in the meantime, writing for websites, for myself, for anyone who would let me, until eventually all my pestering got me a freelance games journalism gig and from there I segued into in-game words.
Since then I’ve helped build game-worlds and their stories from post-cyberpunk to science-fantasy, from console to tabletop RPGs. I also run a podcast about SFF writers and writing from which I siphon off their world-building skills through an infernal ritual involving a dark bargain and an occult Skype plugin.
Introduction to gaming and writing
One of my earliest memories (and indeed photos) is of me sitting in my pants playing something on my dad’s Commodore 64. It’s his fault entirely I got into games – I was brought up on text adventures like Jinxter, point ’n’ clicks and crotchety flight sims, and later stuff like Grim Fandango, Baldurs Gate and Syberia. I’ve played games for as long as I can remember, and I’ve always homed in on those with a gripping narrative or weird and wonderful characters. As I got older, I began properly analysing why as I continued to devour the fantasy, noir and sci-fi canons across films, books, comics, cave-paintings and bird entrails.
These days, I don’t have much time for the epics I used to sink my life into (JRPGs still tempt me though). I try and play a balance between stuff that will inspire or challenge me and pure, brain-numbing entertainment while my next great character creation simmers away on the mental back-burner.
The Future of Videogame Writing
I’ve learned creating great games writing is a peculiar alchemy of technical limitations, player manipulation, and knowing when to keep the words invisible.
As technology improves, it becomes increasingly important for great stories to shine through. So often we’re left with an awkward gap between our actions, or impressive tech, and the narrative. That’s what I want to tackle – finding deeply satisfying ways to infuse a game with story, seamlessly.
Abandon Ship, of course, is mostly about your story. It’s my job to help make sure we give you all the context and imagination prompts you need to create the best version of that story. It’s about making you, the player, feel like there’s a living, breathing history to the world you’re about to star in. Peppered with pirate slang and tentacle adjectives of course.