Game Comics : Theory and design
A history of visual influence and narrative crossover exists between comics and videogames. The digital mediation of comics has resulted in the two forms sharing common platforms for creation, distribution, and consumption. In combination with their shared spatial nature, these circumstances have led to the beginnings of hybridization between the two forms. The resulting “game comics” are a hybrid format that exhibit some of the key characteristics of games and use some of the key characteristics of the form of comics as the basis for their gameplay. This chapter focuses on the design and creation of game comics and considers a range of aesthetic, ludic, and narrative challenges that must be met in order to achieve a successful outcome. It provides a practice-based inquiry into how comics narratives can integrate progression-based gameplay and how gameplay in turn can create narrative. It examines how comics can incorporate gaming tropes from the adventure and puzzle genres, without diminishing the key characteristics of the form of comics. The chapter also examines the application of common videogame design methodologies within a comics creation context and highlights some of the practical and conceptual difficulties that can problematize and limit successful game comics creation.