The Walking Dead (Writer, Designer, Creative Lead) is a five-part episodic game series for XBOX360, PS3, PC & Mac from Telltale Games based on the wildly popular comic book series by Robert Kirkman. The goal for the project was to tell a new story within his world that focused on what it was like to have to make the impossible choices required for human survival in a world that has lost all of its humanity. While the zombie apocalypse is the backdrop of The Walking Dead, any fan will tell you it’s a story actually about the people trying just to get by in their day-to-day and the zombies fade into the background, like the weather. With so many zombie games focused on the fantasy of surviving the zombie apocalypse in the marketplace, it was exciting to focus just on the abject horror of it all and what that means for an individual person.
I co-wrote the overarching season story for the game which was pitched directly to Robert Kirkman and based on the idea of building family during crisis. We created the characters Lee Everett and Clementine, a man and a little girl, to give the players the chance to play as a flawed human being (Lee has large portions of his past he regrets) who attempts to navigate the choppy and muddy rivers of “right and wrong” in a time where those ideas have been rendered obsolete. Making morally grey choices with a little girl at your side made the story infinitely more interesting. Of course, the onus was then on us to make Clementine someone you actually cared for — something I believe the game succeeds at.
Along with writing the season story I wrote the first and last episodes of the series, voice directed those episodes, oversaw the writing on all other episodes, and designed the timer and choice driven-dialog system used throughout.
The first, third and fifth episodes of The Walking Dead are some of the more personal bits of work I’ve done. I love characters that don’t love themselves and giving gamers the opportunity to be one of those was an immensely satisfying experience.
Praise for The Walking Dead
VGA: Game of the Year 2012, Best Female Character (Clementine)