Brianna Lei
Brianna Lei
game writer + narrative designer

.01

Choices: Stories you play

 

I'm a game writer at Pixelberry Studios working on High School Story 3 and two unannounced projects. One of the most useful skills I've honed here is the art of writing player choices that feel meaningful, yet don't require a ton of new content from writers. 

My responsibilities include:

  • Brainstorming & outlining game stories with the team
  • Writing chapters of game dialogue while following an established style
  • Rewriting based on rounds of feedback 
  • Offering feedback on other writers' work 

All while meeting tight deadlines to boot! 

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.02

Butterfly Soup

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"The thing that Butterfly Soup gets so right is the writing. More than the humor, Butterfly Soup feels real. The characters are all people I knew and hung out with in high school [...] Butterfly Soup didn’t just make me laugh, it made me feel understood, visible, seen. " 

-Kotaku

"One of the most moving, memorable stories I’ve experienced all year [...] Filled with genuine warmth and humor."

-Polygon

"This has been a fantastic year for story-based games, with What Remains of Edith Finch, Tacoma, Pyre (and Prey!). I think Brianna Lei's personal, intensely funny vision stands among them. Maybe even on top."

-Waypoint

    I wrote a visual novel about gay Asian American girls falling in love with baseball and each other. You play through the perspective of four teenagers, each of whom struggle with not being what their parents/society want them to be:  

    • Diya is a jock with crippling social anxiety. When she develops a crush on Min-seo, her childhood friend, she's thrown headlong into a sexual identity crisis. 
    • Noelle is a nerd, but not by choice. Her immigrant parents have impossible expectations for her.
    • Akarsha is a living, breathing meme. Unfortunately, her jokes are a smokescreen disguising her crippling depression.  
    • Min-seo is a rebel. When she's ridiculed and punished because her interests don't match up with society's gendered expectations, she becomes frustrated and vows to destroy the world. 

    Meanwhile, the 2008 Prop 8 campaign to eliminate same-sex marriage in California goes on in the background. Think the Breakfast Club meets Skins...meets baseball...starring gay Korean, Chinese, and Indian-Americans. I feel arrogant saying this, but it's truly not quite like anything else out there.

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      .03

      Pom Gets wi-fi

      "Pom Gets Wi-Fi is one of those games that makes you pause every so often and give your face a light slap to make sure you aren't hallucinating, and also makes you sound like a complete lunatic and a liar when describing it to other people." 

      -JAYISGAMES.COM

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      The first game I ever wrote -- a surreal, satirical RPG about internet addiction I made as a teenager.

      Within hours of being released, the game generated so much traffic that it brought down its host website, was covered by various Youtubers like Pewdiepie and Shane Dawson, and generally scared the living daylights out of me.

      Despite its age, I still feel that the writing at the beginning of the game is quite clear! The central theme of the story is that obsessing over internet sites causes you to lose sight of what's really important in life.

      Within the first five minutes of the game, the protagonist Pom, who speaks solely in uncapitalized internet slang, dies because she's so focused on checking social media that the fails to notice her house burning down around her. When she wakes up in Doggy Heaven, she comes to a horrifying realization: there's no wi-fi, so she can't finish checking all her usual sites. 

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