The Great Gatsby Video Game Maker on Storytelling

Designers Peter Smith and Charlie Hoey re-imagined F. Scott Fitzgerald‘s The Great Gatsby as a Nintendo game from the late 1980s–making literary headlines around the country. Follow this link to play the game (complete with 8-bit graphics and tinny soundtrack).

The Rumpus caught up with the designers, finding out how they made the game and getting some storytelling advice in the process. What do you think?

Here’s an excerpt: “When Roger Ebert sends out his annual provocation about how no games tell a story as good as The Brothers Karamazov, I both feel like he has a point and that he’s barking up the wrong tree. To me, great games are closer to art installations than to movies or books. They’re kinetic sculptures about color, space, and mood. The story told by the original Metroid – leaving out the manual, just talking about the game itself – wouldn’t satisfy a ten-year-old, but the game world you get to explore is this beautiful, sprawling Lovecraftian nightmare. The story is just enough to serve that sense of place.”