Game Development Reference
Writing for Driving Games
10.1 “I'm a Game with Cars In It. What Kind of Game
There are a lot of games with cars. It depends whose figures you use over what term
and in what parts of the world, but games with cars could be said to account for
roughly 20% of the games people play—a huge proportion. It's possible to slice and
dice this body of games up in a variety of ways: simulations and arcade games, games
with characters ( Driver ), games with car tuning ( Gran Turismo ), games on roads
( Formula One ), games off-road ( WRC: Rally Evolved ), games in cities ( Crazy Taxi ),
conventional racers ( Ridge Racer ), underground racing ( Juiced ), “no-rules” racing
( MotorStorm ), sandbox games with cars—or you could call them RPGs with cars—
( Grand Theft Auto ), and so on. Many games fall into more than one category—it
just really depends where you decide to put your knife in to divide up this pretty vast
For the purposes of this chapter, I'm going to break them into three categories.
These are not categories you will usually find consumers thinking in terms of, nor
the categories execs, producers, designers, programmers, or artists will generally be
thinking in terms of. But this being a book for writers, this is often the way writers
tend to think. For a writer working on a game with cars in it, there are essentially
three types of game:
1. A driving game with a story.
2. A driving game without a story.
3. A vehicle-related game with a story.
There's an overlap between all three, which could be represented by Figure 10.1.
However, this chapter is going to take a look at writing for the first two kinds of