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Interactive Storytelling (CANCON 2012)

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The Big Question: What would it take to create the holodeck (in terms of storytelling)? Is it a technical or a creative breakthrough that we need?

The Big Question: What would it take to create the holodeck (in terms of storytelling)? Is it a technical or a creative breakthrough that we need?


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  • 1. Interactive Storytelling Gail Carmichael (www.gailcarmichael.com)
  • 2. The Big Question:What would it take to create the Holodeck?
  • 3. About Me
  • 4. About MeBachelor of Computer Science (2002-2007)Masters of Computer Science (2007-2009) PhD Computer Science (2009 - now)
  • 5. Why I Care:I love games with stories
  • 6. What is Interactive Storytelling? Story + Interaction
  • 7. What is Interactive Storytelling? Story + Interaction “A story follows an Stories have a interesting complex protagonist structure, are seeking a clear usually about goal by addressing people rather than an ever-escalating things, and set of difficulties.” involve conflict. Andrew Glassner Chris Crawford
  • 8. What is Interactive Storytelling? Story + Interaction Two or more agents that are Listening Thinking Speaking Chris Crawford
  • 9. Josiah Lebowitz and Chris Klug
  • 10. Hey! Games are interactive!
  • 11. Think of your favourite game story How much does the plot change? How does player action change it? Are major plot points enforced, or player-driven?
  • 12. Nothing is that simple…
  • 13. Problems With Story and Games à la Chris Crawford Stories are not usually puzzles
  • 14. Problems With Story and Games à la Chris Crawford Stories are not usually puzzles… Story – Puzzle – Story – Puzzle …
  • 15. Problems With Story and Games à la Chris Crawford Stories are much more than spectacle
  • 16. Problems With Story and Games à la Chris CrawfordStories often present events in nonlinear order
  • 17. Problems With Story and Games à la Chris CrawfordGames are usually focused on violent conflict
  • 18. Problems With Story and Games à la Chris CrawfordChoice in games comes from players, not characters
  • 19. Problems With Story and Games à la Andrew GlassnerMyth of interactivity: More interactivity makes any experience better.
  • 20. Problems With Story and Games à la Andrew GlassnerAn interactive experience must be fun, interesting, or both.
  • 21. Problems With Story and Games à la Andrew Glassner A player’s time should be respected.
  • 22. Problems With Story and Games à la Andrew Glassner Players should not be deceived.
  • 23. Problems With Story and Games à la Andrew GlassnerA player should have enough information to make an informed choice.
  • 24. Problems With Story and Games à la Andrew Glassner Players should not be required to makehighly improbable connections or embark on exhaustive searches to collect magic items.
  • 25. Problems With Story and Games à la Andrew GlassnerCut scenes should never show the player’s character acting in ways that cancontradict the player’s mental model of the character.
  • 26. What about technology?
  • 27. What about technology?
  • 28. What about technology?
  • 29. So interactive stories are hard… Does it matter?
  • 30. No preference Interactive Traditional Storytelling No storyHighly Player Driven StorytellingBranching Path Storytelling Multiple-Ending Storytelling Josiah Lebowitz and Chris Klug
  • 31. Josiah Lebowitz and Chris Klug
  • 32. Types of Story Enjoyment M Pohjola The Audience Passive reception of narrative
  • 33. Types of Story Enjoyment M Pohjola The PerformerActive performance of a character role within an unfolding story
  • 34. Types of Story Enjoyment M Pohjola The ImmersionistImmersion of the player in the character
  • 35. The Big Question:What would it take to create the Holodeck?
  • 36. www.gailcarmichael.com