LudoNarraCon 2024 – Interview with Chris Wright of Fellow Traveller

LudoNarraCon 2024 - Chris Wright Interview

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.” – Maya Angelou

LudoNarraCon 2024

LudoNarraCon 2024 (LNC) is a FREE digital convention organised by indie games label Fellow Traveller and hosted on Steam, with a focus on celebrating narrative and storytelling in video games and the talented and dedicated people who make such titles. You can read an in-depth overview of this year’s event here and discover Indie Hive’s top picks from the vast array of demos available during the event here.

LudoNarraCon 2024 - Key Art

Chris Wright Interview

We were given the opportunity to talk to Fellow Traveller’s Founder and Managing Director, Chris Wright, and ask all sorts of questions about LudoNarraCon 2024, narrative in games, and how the event has progressed since it began five years ago in 2019!

What was your main goal when starting LudoNarraCon?

So this was back in 2018 that we developed the idea and it was primarily motivated by trying to find an alternative way to promote our games instead of having to go to physical conventions. Conventions were not great for our style of deep narrative game – they’re noisy and not well suited to demos longer than 10-15 minutes or that are about reflection and immersion and they’re expensive and inefficient when you have a global audience but events are geographically focused.

We wanted to create an alternative for us and also for other developers working on narrative-driven games who had the same challenge and create a place to bring together the community of narrative-focused developers and the players who love this kind of game and to do that in a way that the focus and spotlight could be on them.

Do you think narrative is the most important aspect of a game?

Haha, the old narrative or gameplay question. To me the most important aspect of the game is the feelings it creates for the player. That’s going to be different for different games – some games are about adrenaline, excitement or a sense of mastery for example, and for those games the narrative might not be as important an element for creating those feelings compared to mechanics and systems.

For us, we’re interested in games centered around feelings of empathy, reflection and immersion so narrative is extremely important in that but ideally it’s about the combination and relationship between the narrative and the mechanics that the true magic happens.

I’ll give an example from a couple of our early games – Hacknet and Orwell. These are narrative-focused games but they use the mechanics of simulated interfaces to really make the player feel that they are in the world and embodying the player character.

In your opinion, what is the most significant way in which LNC has evolved since the first event in 2019?

The biggest thing is that we basically invented the Steam festival with the first event and no-one really understood what it was and we had to get a lot of help from Valve in creating the event page and sorting out the panel streams. Five years on and Steam festivals are a foundational layer of indie game marketing and really understood by developers and players and they are supported by a huge amount of features and tools on the Steam-side that give us a huge amount of control and flexibility in what we can do.

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What is the biggest challenge when putting the event together each year?

The biggest challenge is selecting the games that make it into the Official Selection. There are so many amazing narrative games out there and we get hundreds of applications each year with a very limited number of spots – we’re saying no to more than 10 developers for every 1 developer we say yes to.

What made you decide to create an exclusively online event, and why did you choose Steam as the platform for LNC?

The genesis of LudoNarraCon as the desire to find a different way to reach players than conventions and then a combination of other things that were floating around for us at the end of 2018 including thinking about hosting narrative game panels at physical conventions and Steam really trying to get developers on board with streaming to their store pages, which was a new feature at the time.

I came out of a meeting with Steam at PAX Australia thinking about what we could do with the streaming on our game pages and all these things connected with a realisation that Steam had features that would allow us to do almost everything we could do at a convention but on the Steam platform itself – demos, panels, sharing behind the scenes information and connecting personally with players via store page streams and chat and it would have a huge benefit in that players would be able to wishlist or buy the games right away without leaving the event. Plus, Steam has a lot of traffic, which provided the aspect that big conventions that PAX provide i.e. a lot of people coming in the door.

So Steam was integral to the whole idea and it was, and is still, uniquely positioned to enable events like this and also the main place that we sell our games and that players play our games so it really is the perfect place for festivals like LudoNarraCon, which I think has been born out with the way they have really jumped into enabling and supporting festivals over the last few years.

What aspect of LNC would you say has been the biggest success?

I think the biggest success would be kicking off the whole Steam festival thing and how many great independent Steam festivals there are like Tacticon, Save and Sound, Tiny Teams and more and of course Steam’s own official Next Fests.

More specifically, LudoNarraCon really did achieve what we set out to do in providing a space dedicated to narrative indie games, the people who make them and the players who love them in an industry where single-player story games are often talked about as a dying breed and so much focus is on more mechanically focused games or games as a service games.

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Are there games or panels that you are particularly excited about this year?

There’s a lot of really great stuff at the show this year so it’s hard to pick, but the “Ongoing Tension Between Story and Gameplay” panel has some really great conversation between the Cryptmaster, Nirvana Noir, and Wander Stars Devs. In terms of games? That might be harder to choose. The Fellow Traveller crew have been loving In Stars and Time and of course we’ve been playing 1000xResist to get ready for its launch this last week. Oh, also the Hauntii and Duck Detective demos are great.

Can we safely look forward to LNC 2025?

Absolutely. LudoNarraCon has become a cornerstone event for us every year that we start preparing months in advance for. We’ve found some other developers plan marketing beats around events like LNC, which makes us incredibly proud. We’ll continue to provide narrative developers with a virtual stage to amplify their recently released or upcoming titles.


It’s great to get such fascinating insight into an event such as LudoNarraCon. Indie Hive have been covering the narrative games festival since its launched and thoroughly enjoyed every year! A huge thanks to Chris for talking to us and also to the whole team for working hard to put the event together!

Want to check out some more Indie HIve LudoNarraCon coverage from previous years? Click here!

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