Matt and I started working together in the early nineties when he had nothing but creative genius going for him. We worked together for almost two decades in which time he invented one of the most widely known secret personas on the net, hours of dirty limericks and a robot gas station attendant with an unhealthy amorous affliction for police cars. Matt has surrounded his writing and creative talents with an intimate knowledge of game production, writing, casting and character performance all of which lets him bring a soul to the digital actors that inhabit our games.
Founder of Bungie, Wideload, and Industrial Toys
Matt is one of the best writers I’ve worked with, and he excels in creating characters and worlds.
Matt was responsible for the writing in Stubbs the Zombie and Disney Guilty Party.
The immersive stories and memorable characters in those video games are testament to his craft.
Thomas M. Kang
Vice President, Disney Interactive
To describe Matt as a game writer is a great understatement. Matt does indeed write excellent dialogue and cutscenes for his games. While we worked together at Wideload Games on Stubbs the Zombie and Guilty Party, Matt also invented most of the characters he was writing, cast the voice actors that played them and directed these actors in the studio. Matt owned the entire process, working with the game designers and artists to figure out what story was to be told, all the way to planning, booking and running the VO sessions. As if that wasn’t enough, Matt also worked with the composers to create the games’ music.
Matt brings his raw sense of humor, biting satire and off-the-wall creativity to everything he writes. Matt pitches fully formed ideas but isn’t afraid to work them with a team to make them even better. He’ll design new game mechanics when it will help him tell a better story, but he’s just as willing to make edits to his scripts when it will make for a better overall game. Whenever we got a new batch of audio from the studio, I was floored with the little touches. Once Matt wrote new lines for a character the day after it got redesigned, while he was at the recording studio no less. It turned out Matt had been taking character concept art with him to the studio for years, letting the visuals inspire him and the actors. No one asked him to change the dialogue based on the new artwork. He just did it because he felt it was the right thing to do. And he was right.
I’m very proud of the work we’ve done together, and I would jump at the chance to work with Matt again. Stubbs the Zombie and Guilty Party are the games I’m most proud to have worked on, and Matt gets a good deal of the credit for that. I know from firsthand experience that he has a satchel full of brilliant ideas just waiting to burst onto the page and screen.
CEO of Fun Machine and former Creative Director of Wideload Games
I have a unique insight into the world of Matt Soell, having written music for three video games for which he was the lead writer. It’s a world of singing manatees, lovestruck zombies, barbershop quartet security guards, pianos dropping out of the sky, animals running for office, and exploding pancreases — not to mention pancake runs at 3 am so we could keep the insanity going just a little longer.
Honestly, Matt is one of the most highly creative people I’ve ever had the pleasure of collaborating with. He’s been the instigator behind many of the most fun and outlandish moments I’ve had scoring games. And he also plays a mean harp!
Composer for Halo, Myth, Destiny, Stubbs the Zombie, Guilty Party, and others
I have worked with Matt on several different projects and each experience was hugely rewarding. Matt’s writing is always fun, witty, honest and clear. As an actor I felt confident conveying what he wrote because it was clear to me what he was shooting for. As a director Matt is generous and open to exploring a variety of ideas and he always made me feel empowered in the booth. He is unique in that he truly stands by his material but is also very open to the ideas around him. You really feel like you are a part of the team working with Matt.
Matt Soell is Brillant. A Mad Genius.
Actually, I could stop right there, because both statements are absolutely true. But I won’t.
Matt has written some of the best games of the past decade. From games he (and thankfully I) worked on together during his tenure with Wideload Games, such as Disney’s Guilty Party, Marvel, Stubbs the Zombie (F’in Brilliant) and Hail to the Chimp, to a little no-name game called HALO. You might have heard of it. He and Bungie got a bit of press on that one.
With Matt, there’s never a wasted word, a missed joke, or a scene that doesn’t become perfectly real for the gamer.
His game play scripting is brilliantly written. Scenes are carefully thought out, and Matt, his own worst critic, has no problem pulling a scene if it’s not working. There’s never ego investment with him.
On top of all this, he’s arguably one of the best voice directors in video gaming I personally have had the chance of working with.
I feel incredibly fortunate to be one of the actors chosen by this man to bring his words to life.
Here’s why it works with him. From an actor’s standpoint, he has in his head what he wants. He gets that from you, then allows his actors to “plus it” if you have a great idea or improv. He NEVER discourages this, which allows us freedom to play, mess, improv…and in the end, make something great together.
Thank you Matt. I’m honored to be on your roster. I look forward to being more creatures, cretins, and soldiers for you for many games to come.
Matt Soell is an extremely gifted writer. His sense of narrative and dialogue seem to come naturally. He consistently creates and develops characters that are complex and engaging, seeing into and fully expressing the deeper psychological nuances buried in the unconscious of these fictional beings. Matt is dedicated to his craft, and carries a stalwart internal editor who upholds the highest of creative standards. I’ve had the pleasure of editing Matt’s writing, and of working with Matt on writing projects of various types. Each time, without fail, I find that I am a student once more, learning with beginner’s mind. How he manages to consistently turn out intelligent, humorous, clever, and scintillating writing is a mystery, as I have known very few writers who are so dependably impressive. The only thing left to say that is that Matt is likewise a professional. He delivers on time, and one could bet on the quality of his work, time and time again. He is particularly sensitive to the hazards of writing constructs, which make characters dull or cliché. In this sense, he is the type of writer who can “breathe life into” old scripts and treatments, while also honoring the integrity of the original story or tone–something he has done often in his career. But a wise agency would hire Matt to build its characters and stories from scratch; this is where Matt truly shines.
Co-Founding Editor, Journal of Holistic Psychology and former Gamespot contributing editor
I have had the pleasure and privilege of working with Matt Soell on several different projects as a VO talent and singer. He is a writer and creator of tremendous imagination and invention. I have witnessed his work from the seed of the idea to the final product, and while he maintains an attitude of openness and joyful collaboration, he is exacting in his artistic vision: Matt’s standards are high for everyone involved but no expectation is higher than what he expects from himself. He is an unusually perceptive director, and communicates expertly both on the fly and in preparation for a session. Working with him is always a great experience! As his creativity knows no bounds, and he seems to have a endless wealth of cultural and historical knowledge, as well as technical ability, it is thrilling to dream of what’s next for this staggeringly gifted writer, producer, designer genius!
Actor and Musician