I’ve loved immersive and interactive narrative stories for almost as long as I’ve been alive. When I was young, my family would take me to theme parks like Disney World or Universal Studios, and I fell in love with the kind of narratives they created. They were simple but engaging, and sometimes they even encouraged guest interaction, whether racking up a score or allowing people to pull pranks in a queue. They brought you in, gave you an experience that only that medium could pull off, then send you home happy. Even though you’re riding a ride with hundreds, even thousands of people a day, in that moment it felt like that story could only be told with you in it.

The desire to engage in that kind of storytelling led me into narrative design, and eventually into a Tabletop RPG freelancing career. In this line of work, I create characters, plot hooks, scenarios, and environments, giving players the materials they need to assemble those tools together into their own unique experiences. At Tales, I’d really love to be able to do that and also tie them all together into something with my own personal touch.

That same craving for storyteling also brought me into the world of visual novels. My first visual novel was Narcissu, and while it was a linear experience, I was floored by its use of image, sound and prose. When I was wasn’t writing for tabletop RPGs, I was trying to teach myself ONscripter, then Ren’py, and then eventually Twine. I am still trying to develop mastery in using these kinds of tools, and I hope that at Tales, I can develop confidence in game scripting.

The explosion of mobile storytelling games has been fantastic for me, since I get to have these experiences without being glued to a PC or a console. There’s an explosion of brand new stories that couldn’t be told or brought about anywhere else. In a lot of ways, these games, especially Tales, brings back those theme park memories: all kinds of unique experiences, all tailored to a wide audience, and yet in the moment the story feels like it could only be about you.

That’s something I’d like to be a part of, if you’d have me.

In conversation with Jose Garcia

Stories by Jose Garcia

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Creator: Jose Garcia