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Character Development: Creating Quinn

Hi! This is Frances from the narrative team, specifically the writer of Quinn's route. Today I want to talk a bit about finding Quinn's voice as I wrote their scripts.

Illustration of nonbinary character with short brown hair, tan skin, wearing a knit sweater and cap

When I first joined the Forage Friends team, I was filling the spot of a previous writer who had already brainstormed the character concept for Quinn. Reading the basic summary of them - an anxious, nonbinary bookworm - I instantly fell in love. They were the first character I worked on at this studio, and now that the beta version of their route is completed, I can say it's something I'm really proud of. Once we get feedback from beta testers in the future, I hope to find ways to make Quinn's story shine even more.

Quinn grew up in Birmingham, UK and moved to the US with their parents when they were in high school. This background made it initially difficult for me to nail down how Quinn would talk. People from Birmingham have a very specific Brummie accent. Meanwhile I, the author, am not from Birmingham. As I was researching for Quinn, I found this video, which I would listen to whenever I felt like I was losing track of what a Birmingham accent sounds like:

Quinn is thirty years old in Forage Friends, so they've been living in the US for over a decade by the time the game takes place. I figured during that time their Brummie accent would have naturally become somewhat less pronounced as they heard American English spoken around them constantly. Quinn is also quite shy and doesn't like to stand out. When you play through their route, you'll see that they're a bit self-conscious about their accent and their voice in general. I thought that when they moved to the US, Quinn would have made the conscious decision to assimilate the way they spoke in certain ways. For example, Quinn says "my mum" instead of "me mum" as is commonly spoken in many Northern British accents.

Excerpt of dialogue detailing Quinn's Brummie accent origin
Snippet of Quinn's dialogue when you learn where their accent comes from

Quinn's personality, specifically the anxiety they deal with, also heavily informs the way they speak. They're a very intelligent person, but their shyness makes them hesitant to speak their mind. When they do have something to share, they'll either take it slow to make sure they're saying it completely correctly, or blurt it all out in a rambling infodump. 

Excerpt of dialogue detailing Quinn's tendency to info dump
An example of Quinn's tendency to infodump

Quinn is hesitant to smile and even more hesitant to laugh, and their sense of humor is fairly subtle, but I hope that means you'll feel even more rewarded when they do share their smile with you.

Quinn is a character that is very close to my heart. I look forward to sharing more about them, and the process of writing the rest of Forage Friends in future blog posts!

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