BioShock 1 and BioShock Infinite, Irrational Games studio head Ken Levine described his role as that of "editor of a magazine ... but I'm also a writer for the magazine," putting things into terms that my word-addled brain could understand. "I believe more in editorship. Auteur sounds like you do everything," he began, making a point to preface his following description with a nod to the other 100-ish folks employed at his Massachusetts studio.
That aside, Levine was clear that his role on Infinite is absolutely that of creative lead, not just creative oversight. "This is my game. And I love the fact that we sit down and chat with each other [Levine and other game devs outside of Irrational], but at the end of the day ... this thing's gotta be my decision."
When it came to the translation of BioShock 1 from game to film, however, Levine's role changed -- even though he had been creative lead (head editor?) during the game's development. "If I were to make a game that was based on somebody else's franchise, you need somebody there who's going to say, 'This is true to the franchise, this isn't true to the franchise.' So that was more my role in the film," he explained.