I recently penned the white paper for Cyber Syndicate, an upcoming GameFi project set to launch in the Sandbox metaverse. Here’s how we worked it out from initial concept to final product.
Aaron Ferris, founder at Cyber Syndicate, initially got in touch with me to support his upcoming NFT GameFi project with some lore and bring some engaging backstory to the Cyber City game world. His designer had already worked on a few 3D voxel avatars and the project was to be based around six distinct factions and city districts.
Cyber City is set in a futuristic dystopia and is heavily influenced by the Cyber Punk subgenre. Being able to work on a creative writing project that mixes elements of gaming with crypto and a futuristic dystopia is something I simply could not turn down.
Aaron and I hopped on a video call and went through various aspects of the project, both technical and creative. I admired his vision and agreed to cooperate with him. I also put myself in his shoes and asked: “Am I just going to give creative leeway to some randomer on the internet?” So I suggested we first try out a small proof of concept job to see how we gel.
I offered to write up the backstory for one of the faction leaders, along with a description of that particular faction’s neighbourhood. In my opinion, this is a good way to show a new customer that you care about their project and their budget, and that you’re not just trying to grab their money upfront. At the same time, this small job is a paid service, as it’s only right that my time spent on the project should be remunerated. Even if we decide to part ways after the proof of concept, the customer is left with original content that they own the copyright to and can use for their project.
As it turned out, Aaron liked my submission and I got down to business writing the other five faction descriptions along with a general intro to Cyber City.
The Next Milestone
Aaron came back to me and asked if I could work on the project’s white paper and naturally I agreed to help. I’ve worked on multiple white papers and every project is different. At the end of the day though, it boils down to the same relationship: Founder has idea in their head, writer helps to unlock and convey the message.
Luckily for me, Aaron had a detailed document with various elements already worked out. I took some time to look through his draft and came up with an estimate for the eventual document length. As this is a GameFi project, we needed to cover technical and economical elements, while also incorporating some entertaining teasers to intrigue potential players. We agreed on a length and price, then moved on to the next step.
The Critical Part
This is where the magic happens; and guess what, the writer doesn’t write a thing! This really is the critical part, because it’s all about psychology.
You see, the founder has been busy for months working on a project, but as a new arrival, it can be daunting for a writer to pop on stage and take over the show. The magic happens when the writer helps the founder unlock all the info that’s percolating in their head.
This is where I go deep. I analyzed the draft from head to toe, turned it around like a Rubik’s cube. I sent a detailed questionnaire back to Aaron and asked him to take the time to answer everything carefully. Like I said, this is psychology, ideally you only do this once, efficiently, not to waste their time.
The writing that follows is smooth, professional, and should come out exactly as the founder wants to see. A copywriter is a salesman behind a keyboard, we’re here to repackage and market the words and concepts that were previously trapped as thoughts in the founder’s head.
Delivery and an invitation
I got struck by inspiration multiple times on this project and I think I know why. Yes, the material was right down my alley, but Aaron and I also had a very productive call back at the start of our creative relationship.
He learned to trust me but also gave feedback and direction where necessary. We bounce a few creative ideas off each other for future developments and potential competitions for players of the game.
Successful NFT projects need to think months ahead in terms of content and engagement, otherwise they’ll drown in a sea of saturation. Aaron seemed to respect my foresight for the project and after accepting my delivery, he invited me onto the team as Content Writer.
The creative lore and technical copywriting combined with the futuristic artwork gives an amazing look and feel to the white paper. I can’t wait for the game to launch.
“Jason is very organized with high attention to detail. He is super creative, professional and goes above and beyond. I’m continually impressed with his level of thoughtfulness and engagement. The communication has been amazing, the work well thought out and he’s very considerate on all aspects of the project.”
Aaron Ferrisfounder at Cyber Syndicate.