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Gears of War producer looks to Pixar for guidance

Locusts, Inc.

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Image credit: Eurogamer

Epic Games producer Rod Fergusson sought storytelling advice from Pixar for the upcoming Gears of War: Judgment.

According to a new GameInformer interview, a story director from Pixar came into to Epic Games' headquarters to do a one day workshop with the studio.

"They talked about how they do story at Pixar in terms of storyboarding," said Fergusson.

He explained that Pixar detailed, "how they do character breakdowns," and decided what its characters fear and love.

"Woody's motivation through all three of the Toy Story movies were about the fear of abandonment, so every movie was about that... And that's something we think about now in terms of our storytelling. We think 'what are the character's motivations and how do we reinforce that? And how do we use that into our storytelling?'"

"We've been trying to improve on storytelling since we started. And this seemed like a natural way of getting a little bit of insight into how what we consider to be the best in the industry and how they tell stories and what we can learn from them."

The Gears of War series has often been criticised for its lackluster storytelling. Story producer on Dead Space Chuck Beavers said, "It contains atrocious, offensive violations of story basics."

"It's literally the worst writing in games," he continued.

Gears of War: Judgment is a collaborative effort between series creator Epic Games and Bulletstorm developer People Can Fly. It's a prequel set before the events of the original trilogy that follows series soldier Damon Baird and his ragtag squadron as they stand trial for as yet unannounced crimes. The game will be presented in flashback as the cast narrates the events leading up to their current predicament.

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