Dmitry Glukhovsky – the cult author of the 2005 novel Metro 2033 – discusses in a new Develop feature how the written word can properly transfer to game mechanics and playscapes.
“I don’t know why authors are greedy with their worlds,” Glukhovsky tells us.
“I don’t want to stay forever as a science fiction writer, but I want [Metro 2033’s] sci-fi universe to stick. I’ve been living in this universe for ten years now, and I want to move on. This game is the start of me opening the doors of the universe to other authors.”
Glukhovsky’s breakthrough novel quickly attracted a number of game studios, but licence eventually went to startup studio 4A – a splinter group formed mainly from staff who departed from S.T.A.L.K.E.R. developer GSC.
“Back then that made me very excited, and a little suspicious too,” he says, “not from the viewpoint of about whether I should turn my precious book into a computer game, but in terms of who would turn my book into a computer game.”
“4A had something to show,” he adds, “I knew what they were capable of, and that they had raw talent. In my position, you have to find talent, and give it freedom, instead of finding some mediocre developer and controlling them for every step. That would be exhausting and useless, because you cannot teach people how to be creative.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Glukhovsky reveals the extent of his ambition with Metro 2033, claiming that the universe he created in fiction can be the launch pad for “something that becomes as big as Star Wars.”