Gary Whitta on Writing The Walking Dead: “We Pull the Rug Out From Under You”
Telltale story consultant Gary Whitta, who has had a hand in crafting the dark and gut-wrenching script of The Walking Dead, recently shared how they go about writing the story.
In an interview with Games.on.net, Whitta explained the thinking behind some of the plot points gamers have had to experience thus far. (Note: This interview contains SPOILERS, so unless you’ve completed the game up through episode four, I suggest you stop reading now).
With regard to the series’ dark middle chapter, Witta brought up the scenario is which the player is robbed of a potential romance.
Yeah, so you had hoped that there would be some possibility for a romance, and of course the game almost trolls you a little bit by having that scene with Carley where you feel like that maybe there is going to be some potential for… that there is some sort of attraction between them.
Then of course, well, you know. This is something that, as you become more familiar with the kind of storytelling that The Walking Dead is, you become worried that as you become more attached to character, that the writers are going to take them away. Because that’s what we do, we try to make you like a character, and then we pull the rug out from under you.
He also discussed the importance of reminding the player that just because they can make choices to affect the story, the aren’t all powerful in influencing the ultimate outcome.
Some people think that that means that they should be all-powerful. That they should have power over everything, and they their choices should work out just the way that they intended. Of course, the reality is, especially in a game like The Walking Dead where we’re trying to be a little bit more realistic in that there isn’t necessarily going to be a happy outcome, you don’t always have control.
If Whitta’s words are any indication of what’s to come, don’t expect the final episode to end on a particularly happy note. After all, this is the zombie apocalypse—what kind of heart-warming outcome could there possibly be?