It has been a while since we talked about Tom Clancy’s The Division so one of the developers working on the game let us sink back into the story of the game a little.
John Björling, the lead narrative designer of the game was recently interviewed by Structo Magazine where he discussed his work on the game.
Since the magazine in question is not gaming specific, he began with a basic introduction to the setting of The Division, the pandemic, the fall of New York, the need of a highly specialized agent and the task of going in deep to revive the city.
Thereon, he shed some light on his part in the game’s development. Being the lead narrative designer, he says that he came across a much more complex puzzle of a story framework that has tons of interdependencies and mock ups with double the toil and trouble:
Working on the narrative for a game of this size and with this complex of a framework is challenging, absolutely, and I’m lucky enough to be surrounded by talented narrative designers, writers, and other developers, who make things come together. The story production is really one big puzzle, full of dependencies and cross-disciplinary work, and it takes a lot of effort to make sure the pieces all come together. It can involve everything from writing thousands of one-off combat barks to having long discussions about why a certain bucket should be blue instead of red. It’s quite different from writing short stories!
Well, it seems the development of The Division is as much about maintaining persistent environments as it is about maintaining consistent ones. Does that somewhat explain the delays?