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Über dieses Buch

This book constitutes the refereed proceedings of the 10th International Conference on Interactive Digital Storytelling, ICIDS 2017, held in Funchal, Madeira, Portugal, in November 2017. The 16 revised full papers and 4 short papers presented were carefully reviewed and selected from 65 submissions. The papers are organized in topical sections on story design, location and generation, history and learning, games, emotion and personality, posters and demos.

Inhaltsverzeichnis

Frontmatter

Story Design

Frontmatter

RheijnLand.Xperiences – A Storytelling Framework for Cross-Museum Experiences

In the Rhine-Waal region of Germany and the Netherlands eight, museums would like to engage adolescents and youngsters in museum visits. Using digital media, visitors should be warmed up, thrilled and get involved in storytelling deeply connected to these museums. Therefore, the project partners of RheijnLand.Xperiences (RLX) are developing a framework and several implementations that allow employing storylines for cross-organizational museum experiences. The key aspect of innovation is the creation of a “continuation network” of partner locations, where the visit to one location leads to the desire to continue the experience at a next location of the network. Therefore, it is mandatory to have junctures between the museums in order to facilitate the continuation. Apart from storytelling methods, several other concepts are being examined, such as “hyperportals”, “culture caching”, using good practices like persuasive technology and theoretic notions like “blended experience”, and “mixed reality”. In order to achieve that goal, RLX makes heavily use of innovation and user centered development methods, such as design thinking, idea generation, co-creation, early prototypes, aiming at setting exemplary methodological steps.

Timo Kahl, Ido Iurgel, Frank Zimmer, René Bakker, Koen van Turnhout

Effective Scenario Designs for Free-Text Interactive Fiction

Free-text interactive fiction allows players to narrate the actions of protagonists via natural language input, which are automatically directed to appropriate storyline outcomes using natural language processing techniques. We describe an authoring platform called the Data-driven Interactive Narrative Engine (DINE), which supports free-text interactive fiction by connecting player input to authored outcomes using unsupervised text classification techniques based on text corpus statistics. We hypothesize that the coherence of the interaction, as judged by the players of a DINE scenario, is dependent on specific design choices made by the author. We describe three empirical experiments with crowdsourced subjects to investigate how authoring choices impacted the coherence of the interaction, finding that scenario design and writing style can predict significant differences.

Margaret Cychosz, Andrew S. Gordon, Obiageli Odimegwu, Olivia Connolly, Jenna Bellassai, Melissa Roemmele

Dynamic Syuzhets: Writing and Design Methods for Playable Stories

The holodeck vision of the future of Interactive Digital Storytelling (IDS) assumes a world that reacts around players as story protagonists; but, we have seen how this approach faces challenges in negotiating the delivery of narrative affect and player agency within current technological and Artificial Intelligence (AI) realities. By approaching the field through creative writing practice, this paper argues that casting players as experience—rather than story—protagonists, has proved an effective alternate means of writing and designing for Playable Stories. Through close analysis of the growing Story Exploration Game genre and comparison with interactive theatre, four new terms—the dynamic syuzhet, authored fabula, fixed syuzhet and improvised fabula—are introduced to show how writing and designing for players as experience protagonists can negotiate the needs of narrative and player agency, provide means to combine mimetic and diegetic player experiences, pair self-directed and empathic engagement, and offer opportunities to use dramatic irony—a cornerstone of narrative drive in other storytelling forms that is unexploited in interactive storytelling. The study that formed the basis of this paper was driven by the question of how writers can develop practice within the current constraints of the form and informed the development of my own indie video game Underland.

Hannah Wood

Plans Versus Situated Actions in Immersive Storytelling Practices

While much research on immersive storytelling practices is focused on outcomes and audience experiences, much less attention has hitherto been given to research on the relationship of such outcomes and experiences to the design process. In this paper, we introduce the distinction between two modes of design to the domain of immersive storytelling: ‘plans’ and ‘situated actions’. In a small comparative case study, we investigate how these two modes of design affect the creative outcomes of the design process of immersive stories and their reception. The case study reveals important relations between the method chosen to design an immersive story and aspects of the outcomes of such design processes, which emphasizes the importance of the mode of design in creating immersive stories.

Sarah Lugthart, Michel van Dartel, Annemarie Quispel

Location and Generation

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Experiencing the Presence of Historical Stories with Location-Based Augmented Reality

In the SPIRIT research project, a location-based Augmented Reality (AR) storytelling application has been developed with the goal to support the imagination of lively historical events at places of cultural significance. We describe a showcase scenario and report on its quantitative and qualitative evaluation, conducted at the Saalburg Roman fort, an outdoor museum site near Bad Homburg in Germany. 107 random voluntary visitors were observed using the app, before filling questionnaires that were then analyzed with SPSS. Specifics of the app include a novel interaction pattern that uses positioning sensors of mobile devices and image recognition to trigger content, featuring transparent videos as ghost-like overlays on the camera image of the environment. Results presented in this paper show that in general, the app was effective and fun to use. Further, there have been differences in the experience of presence concerning the AR representation, as well as in the comprehension and appreciation of the story’s content. Concluding, we discuss influencing parameters on the results and draft hypotheses for future work.

Ulrike Spierling, Peter Winzer, Erik Massarczyk

Developing a Writer’s Toolkit for Interactive Locative Storytelling

Despite the increasing popularity of locative interactive stories their poetics are poorly understood, meaning that there is little advice or support for locative authors, and few frameworks for critical analysis. The StoryPlaces project has spent two years working with over sixty authors creating locative stories. Through analyzing the stories themselves, and interviewing readers, we have developed a simple writer’s toolkit that highlights the challenges and opportunities offered by locative fiction. In this paper, we describe our approach and outline twelve key pragmatic and aesthetic considerations that we have derived from our experience and analyses. Together these reveal that the main challenge in locative literature lies in aligning the narrative text, the structural logic, and the demands and affordances of the landscape.

Heather S. Packer, Charlie Hargood, Yvonne Howard, Petros Papadopoulos, David E. Millard

Level of Detail Event Generation

Level of detail is a method that involves optimizing the amount of detail that is simulated for some entity. We introduce an event generation method to optimize the level of detail of upcoming events in a simulation. Our method implements a cognitive model, which uses an estimate of the player’s knowledge to estimate their interest in different aspects of the world. Our method predicts the salience of upcoming events, and uses this salience value to define the level of detail of potential new events. An evaluation of our method’s predictive capacity shows generally higher accuracy than a baseline predictor.

Luis Flores, David Thue

History and Learning

Frontmatter

Grimes’ Fairy Tales: A 1960s Story Generator

We provide the first extensive account of an unknown story generator that was developed by linguist Joseph E. Grimes in the early 1960s. A pioneering system, it was the first to take a grammar-based approach and the first to operationalize Propp’s famous model. This is the opening paper in a series that will aim to reformulate the prevailing history of story generation in light of new findings we have made pertaining to several forgotten early projects. Our study here has been made possible by personal communication with the system’s creator, Grimes, and excavation of three obscure contemporaneous sources. While the accepted knowledge in our field is that the earliest story generator was Sheldon Klein’s automatic novel writer, first reported in 1971, we show that Grimes’s system and two others preceded it. In doing this, we reveal a new earliest known system. With this paper, and follow-ups to it that are in progress, we aim to provide a new account of the area of story generation that lends our community insight as to where it came from and where it should go next. We hope others will join us in this mission.

James Ryan

The Narrative Logic of Rube Goldberg Machines

Rube Goldberg’s cartoons famously depict absurd, unreasonably complex machines invented by Professor Lucifer G. Butts to carry out simple tasks. Rube Goldberg machine has now become a byword for overly complicated machinery or bureaucracy of any kind. The specific structure of Goldberg’s original cartoons, however, is quite interesting. Beyond simply being complex, his machines are based on a particular repertoire of objects used in stereotypical, coincidental, and comical ways, exhibiting almost as much of a narrative logic as a mechanical logic. In this paper, we analyze the structure of these cartoon machines’ construction, with a view towards being able to generate them using a planning formalization of this analysis.

David Olsen, Mark J. Nelson

Cinelabyrinth: The Pavilion of Forking Paths

An important and technologically innovative interactive cinema experience, Cinelabyrinth was a large-scale architectural pavilion built in the form of maze-like interconnecting screening rooms, affording its visitors a navigable, yet carefully structured, narrative environment. It was created in 1990 for the Osaka World Expo and was one of the last major projects of Radúz Činčera, whose most well-known work was the Kinoautomat of 1967. Despite the originality of Cinelabyrinth and the individual role it offered its users—audience members could physically navigate the branching structure without depending on any majority decision—the project has left little imprint on the academic literature. An analysis of the Cinelabyrinth’s design and function is presented so as to enable interactive filmmakers now benefitting from digital technology to better understand the potential of large-scale multiscreen non-linear narratives.

Chris Hales

Verb+s Is Looking for Love: Towards a Meaningful Narrativization of Abstract Content

This paper discusses the development of a process to narrativize abstract content in the context of English taught as a foreign language, focusing on the teaching of grammar rules which are problematic for Italian learners. It argues that content in story-form is better processed by the human brain compared to non-narrative content, and highlights how the discussion on narrativization of abstract content is still open. Then it describes the challenges to the development of such process, explains a narrativization proposal, and illustrates its development, structure and application. Finally, it presents preliminary results of a first exploratory application in a school context, showing that the process is clear and direct enough to be applied successfully by secondary school students. This process could be the first step towards a new representation of abstract knowledge and the automated creation of metaphorical stories.

Serena Zampolli

Games

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Wordless Games: Gameplay as Narrative Technique

In this paper, we look at how gameplay can be used to tell stories in a game without the help of words. Through close readings of three wordless games with a strong narrative focus, Journey, Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons and A Bird Story, we explore how gameplay within wordless games can help to convey a narrative. We have identified four techniques by which gameplay is used for storytelling: gameplay as enacting narrative, manipulating player controls for narrative effect, gameplay for exploring narrative setting, and gameplay as time progression. We discuss these techniques in relation to existing concepts of player experience, and suggest ways gameplay can help to circumvent issues of ambiguity in wordless narrative in games.

Yuin Theng Sim, Alex Mitchell

A Framework for Multi-participant Narratives Based on Multiplayer Game Interactions

Multi-participant Interactive Narratives have the potential for novel types of story and experiences, but there is no framework to show what is possible, and therefore no description of what types of multi-participant narrative could exist. In this paper, we attempt to build such a framework by first considering the core characteristics of interactions in multiplayer games, and then considering how those might be used to define different types of multi-participant narrative. Our framework is based on a systematic analysis of 56 interactions across 17 multiplayer games, resulting in 9 distinguishing characteristics. We then validate this framework by applying it to 3 novel multiplayer games, showing that it successfully captures the player interactions, although some higher level design decisions are missed. Finally, we demonstrate that novel premises for multi-participant narratives can be constructed from these characteristics. Our work provides a foundation for considering the types of multi-participant narrative that are possible.

Callum Spawforth, David E. Millard

Gaming Versus Storytelling: Understanding Children’s Interactive Experiences in a Museum Setting

While gaming and storytelling are considered to be common approaches to engage audiences with a museum’s collections, a formal comparison of the two has not been found in literature. While gaming and storytelling are considered to be common approaches to engage audiences with a museum’s collections, a formal comparison of the two has not been found in literature. In this paper, we present the design and comparative study of two distinct interventions, namely a mobile game and a mobile story that were designed to engage a young audience with the exhibit of the local natural history museum. Focusing on the same scientific content derived from the museum’s collection, we compare the effects of both interactive experiences on a group of children. When comparing engagement, enjoyment and learning outcomes, we correlate results with data derived from observations and skin conductance biofeedback. The data collected so far suggest that children are 27% more excited when using the game application compared with the story driven one. Moreover, we find that children’s excitement peaks when encountering selected artefacts presented in the museum exhibit. Finally, children’s learning nearly doubled (44%) when using the game based experience versus the story. We conclude the paper by discussing the implications of our findings and by proposing potential future improvements.

Marko Radeta, Vanessa Cesario, Sónia Matos, Valentina Nisi

Emotion and Personality

Frontmatter

Using Interactive Storytelling to Identify Personality Traits

Each person feels and understands stories in a unique way. Stories have different meanings to people, and those depend on their personal experiences and personality. Each one of us is unique, with unique personality traits, classifiable through personality trait theories, such as the Myers-Briggs theory. In this paper, we describe how we have created a database of 155 individuals to extract their personality classifications based on Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and then used the fact that each person’s individual traits impact the interpretation of interactive storytelling. With this work, we intend to perceive transparently (i.e. without questionnaire and using the language of the interactive experience itself) the person’s personality in order to create through the use of persuasion a personalised narrative experience. Through a concrete study, we show how an Interactive Storytelling scenario can be used to identify users personality traits. In particular, by extracting the decisions taken by a user in an interactive storytelling scenario, we are able to predict the user’s MBTI personality traits.

Raul Paradeda, Maria José Ferreira, Carlos Martinho, Ana Paiva

How Knowledge of the Player Character’s Alignment Affect Decision Making in an Interactive Narrative

In game narrative the central role of the protagonist becomes a challenge as the protagonist often conflates with the player character, which the author and the player share control over. This paper investigates whether knowledge of the player character’s alignment, i.e. the inner thoughts of the character, can influence how they decide to progress in a game. The player character’s alignment will present an internal conflict, which will sometimes conflict with the external goal of a game. It is investigated whether players are more likely to abandon their external goal, and ultimately change their in-game behaviour, when exposed to the internal conflict of their character. A test was conducted in which participants played through one of two similar versions of the same game; one in which they were exposed to the player character’s internal conflict, and another in which they were not. The test was conducted online and ended with 467 participants. The data shows that a significant ratio of players changed their behaviour in the game, when exposed to the inner conflict of the player character.

Mette Jakobsen, Daniel Svejstrup Christensen, Luis Emilio Bruni

Thinning the Fourth Wall with Intelligent Prompt

This paper presents a digitally enhanced model of performer–audience communion in an interactive storytelling setting, based on an intelligent prompt system. The audience response is taken into account through emotion detection; the performer decides about her/his attitude towards the audience. The intelligent prompt advises the performer about how to continue the story. The model, named DoPPioGioco (“DoublePlay”), has been implemented as a prototype system, a virtual environment that realizes a feedback loop between the performer and audience.

Rossana Damiano, Vincenzo Lombardo, Antonio Pizzo

Virtual, Mixed and Augmented Reality

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Who Are You? Voice-Over Perspective in Surround Video

With the renewed interest in VR, new questions arise for content creators, as existing cinematic practices cannot simply be transferred. In this paper, we describe two experiments investigating which voice-over perspective elicits the best sense of presence for viewers of cinematic VR content. For the first experiment different voice-over narrations in first, second and third person perspectives were added to a VR video. This test showed that viewers preferred the voice-over in second person perspective, as this provided them with the strongest sense of presence and a feeling of ‘being in the story’. In the second experiment, we used a short 360° documentary with a first person voice-over perspective, and compared it to a version of the same documentary with a second person voice-over, using a quantitative survey. In this experiment, however, no significant difference was found between the two groups of respondents. In our discussion, we explore several possible reasons that may have contributed to this outcome.

Mirjam Vosmeer, Christian Roth, Hartmut Koenitz

Empathic Actualities: Toward a Taxonomy of Empathy in Virtual Reality

This paper seeks to formalize the language of empathy surrounding Virtual Reality (VR). The immediacy of VR documentaries has been claimed to be so vivid that users are more capable of empathizing than through previous media. This is a laudable but ambiguous claim. Empathy’s multiple definitions complicate how designers use the term. Further, the relationship between users, designers, and subjects in reality needs clarification if claims of empathy are to be made. This paper proposes that VR does not facilitate a direct relationship between a user and an experience’s subject in reality to achieve empathy. Instead, VR designers establish role-plays to achieve an empathic actuality—an emotionally charged interpretation of life—which may result in compassion or sympathy. Users end up empathizing directly with a VR designer and their presented representations, not their subjects in lived reality. A review of existing experiences is discussed to clarify claims of empathy and put forward a foundational taxonomy.

Joshua A. Fisher

Design for Emerging Media: How MR Designers Think About Storytelling, Process, and Defining the Field

Given mixed reality’s (MR) unique status as an emerging medium that incorporates both the physical and the virtual in hybrid space, it is a particularly interesting field in which to study the design process as a whole, and interactive narrative design in particular. How prominently does story figure in MR design? What kinds of stories are being told? As MR tools become more accessible, the field is opening up to a wider variety of practitioners. However, the full breadth of methods and techniques being brought to bear in design for MR has not yet been studied. This paper presents findings from an interview study with fifteen leading MR designers, and describes the multiplicity of approaches they use. These approaches are presented as a matrix, composed of a opportunistic—deterministic spectrum (based on designs planned in advance vs. improvisation), and a storytelling—sensationalizing spectrum (based on designs aimed at narrative creation vs. development of a sensory experience).

Rebecca Rouse, Evan Barba

Posters

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An Interactive Installation for Dynamic Visualization of Multi-author Narratives

This paper introduces the interactive installation of Babel framework, developed to support dynamic composition and visualization of user generated narrative elements. Different versions of the same story are contributed by multiple authors through a web platform, they are annotated with metadata and stored in a database. The users of the installation retrieve the contributed content, explore it and recompose it in real time, thus articulating a unique trajectory in the narrative space. The interaction occurs through an intuitive computer vision interface that detects the light of a torch manipulated by the user.

Caterina Antonopoulou

Factors of Immersion in Interactive Digital Storytelling

This paper describes the design and implementation of a system suitable for conducting an experiment investigating the level of immersion in Virtual Reality storytelling content. In the study, participants had to play through a digital story of high quality using the head mounted display of the HTC Vive and its controllers. The story consisted of five scenes with different content that assume a different level of immersion and interactivity. During the experiment, participants had their heart rate measured by a wearable health tracker. In addition, the participants needed to answer subjective questionnaires regarding their experience of that particular scene. We investigated what subjective factors are contributing to experienced immersion and whether the level of immersion is related to the measured heart rate. We can show that different subjective dimensions are contributing the level of immersion experienced and that heart rate is reflecting the level of interactivity of an interactive digital story.

Sebastian Arndt, Martin Ervik, Andrew Perkis

Evaluating User Experience in 360º Storytelling Through Analytics

A necessary component in the mass adoption of Virtual Reality (VR) is the creation of support tools to help creators develop and evaluate content. Emphasising the importance of User Experience (UX) in VR, analytics platforms are setup to understand participant’s behaviour, therefore helping for a better understanding of the medium. This paper reviews evaluation methods for VR concerned with observation of user behaviour, and how these are structured in analytics platforms. By surveying existing platforms, we look at how these platforms support the creation and evaluation of VR experiences and apply this knowledge to design a platform for the specific context of VR Storytelling.

Paulo Bala, Valentina Nisi, Nuno Nunes

Towards an Interaction Model for Interactive Narratives

In the discussion of interactive narrative experiences and story-driven games, much of the current work has focused on analyzing and proposing models and frameworks based on narrative theory and ludology. However, the players’ experience and interaction with such narrative structure and content is a topic that is currently understudied in the field. Specifically, questions regarding how the player interacts and perceives the impact of their interaction on the story are currently unanswered. This paper presents a step towards defining an interaction model that can be used to design and compare how a user participates in an interactive narrative.

Elin Carstensdottir, Erica Kleinman, Magy Seif El-Nasr

Using Interactive Fiction to Teach Pediatricians-in-Training About Child Abuse

Electronic learning is used extensively in medical education. Though some interventions have incorporated elements of gamification and narrative, interactive fiction is a novel approach to educating medical trainees. Diagnosis and management of child abuse requires competencies in patient care, systems-based practice, communication, and professionalism. This complexity, along with the emotional significance of caring for abused children, makes child abuse pediatrics an ideal topic for an initial implementation of an interactive-fiction-based learning module. This module will be compared to a standard e-learning module in the education of physicians training to become pediatricians.

Grant P. Christman, Sheree M. Schrager, Kelly Callahan

Interactive Imagining in Interactive Digital Narrative

This poster presents cross-disciplinary theory to identify inter-dependent processes of digital and human systems involved in Interactive Digital Narrative (IDN). Extending previous research on IDN design affordances and Human Development (HD) capacities, the project explores theory with a method for understanding reciprocal person-program synergies. The poster defines this program-person synergy as “interactive imagining” and sketches a research approach for studying such shared processing. This illustrative research method involves the think-aloud protocol method adapted to foster IDN designer-player dialogue around problematic, surprising or otherwise interesting IDN episodes, indicated in previous pilot gameplay. The poster outlines a think-aloud study to examine the nature and impact of interactive imagining among student designer-players in an interdisciplinary college setting. The goal of this inquiry is to expand the definition of IDN as an inter-subjective process including the meta-reflections of designer and player, thereby advancing IDN theory and practice.

Colette Daiute, Robert O. Duncan

Repetition, Reward and Mastery: The Value of Game Design Patterns for the Analysis of Narrative Game Mechanics

This paper aims to expand existing knowledge on narrative game design. Specifically, the paper discusses the importance of game design patterns for the analysis of narrative game mechanics. By bringing together insights from cognitive narratology and game design theory, the paper creates a preliminary theoretical perspective for deconstructing the design of mechanic-driven narrative games. To support the theoretical argument, the paper discusses Papers, Please as case study.

Teun Dubbelman

Towards a Narrative-Based Game Environment for Simulating Business Decisions

Case studies are narratives of a specific real-life or imagined situation. They are used as teaching tools to help students practice their critical decision-making skills. Interactive Storytelling has the potential to augment the case method for business education by allowing for the dynamic generation of new cases based on the player’s actions. Decisions made in previous cases will affect future ones, providing the player with a deeper and more meaningful learning experience. In this paper, we present our approach in building an interactive storytelling environment with case studies as its central theme, to teach students about ethical business practices. Preliminary evaluation with business experts as well as students, corroborated the value of combining story generation within a game to teach ethical business management, and showed its potential for expansion into a wider domain.

Stanley Yu Galan, Michael Joshua Ramos, Aakov Dy, Yusin Kim, Ethel Ong

What is a Convention in Interactive Narrative Design?

This paper reports on an aspect of a long-term project to create a body of evidence-based interactive narrative design methods. In this context, we discuss aspects of formal design descriptions as a basis for a quantitative approach to verify the effects of design choices on the experience of audiences. Specifically, we discuss the notion of ‘design conventions’ by acknowledging earlier usages of the term and the related discourse in video game studies.

Hartmut Koenitz, Christian Roth, Teun Dubbelman, Noam Knoller

Interactive Storytelling for the Maintenance of Cultural Identity: The Potential of Affinity Spaces for the Exchange and Continuity of Intergenerational Cultural Knowledge

In an increasingly aged society, with unmeasurable cultural richness kept by its elder elements for their vast life experience, it is urgent to preserve this cultural knowledge before it disappears. The capacity of the computational space to accommodate a virtualization of reality is evident, alongside with the possibility to preserve perspectives of reality with spontaneous and very easy to sort creations thanks to the web tools that now support content production by any common user. Despite all the relevant problematics brought by this context where the common user is simultaneously consumer and producer of information, the opportunities for the present and future of cultural identity maintenance are numerous. This paper approaches the idea of supporting the participatory maintenance of cultural identity through intergenerational storytelling and the dynamization of digital affinity spaces. Our contribution aims to grow the understanding of the role that interactive narratives can have in the real world and in the specific context of cultural identity maintenance, by developing new usage strategies to enhance cultural mediation with the tools we have available and with the help of social, ubiquitous and mobile storytelling strategies.

Juliana Monteiro, Carla Morais, Miguel Carvalhais

Applying Interactive Documentary as a Pedagogical Tool in High School Level

This work explores the potential of interactive documentary as a teaching tool, both from a didactic perspective, in which the documentary is a viewing and learning tool. To do this, we analysed the characteristics of interactive documentary within the Educommunication framework.

Valentina Moreno, Arnau Gifreu-Castells

Interactive Storytelling System for Enhancing Children’s Creativity

We developed an interactive storytelling system that generates stories from hypothetical questions, called ‘What-If’ function. Specifically, the stories are expressed in a rule-based form ‘If-Then’. The system allows users to create a story that has a synopsis different from the original story by changing the ‘If’ part. For example, if the user changes the appearance and personality of a character, the outline of the story also changes. We believe this process can help improve the creativity of users of the system. This system was also developed to help users visualize written stories as images and allow them to experience stories interactively. An evaluation experiment, conducted on 21 fifth graders in elementary school, showed an improvement in the children’s creative ability.

Kaoru Sumi, Nozomu Yahata

Open World Story Generation for Increased Expressive Range

To let authors shape the set of experiences that can occur when a generative Interactive Storytelling (IS) system is used, the process of authoring for the system must support specifying constraints over how different stories can progress. We present an extension to an existing IS system that both allows authors more flexibility in specifying the constraints and gives the generator more freedom in filling in the parts of the story that the authors leave unconstrained. Our approach is based on open-world planning using the IndiGolog action programming language and heuristic search for plan generation.

David Thue, Stephan Schiffel, Tryggvi Þór Guðmundsson, Guðni Fannar Kristjánsson, Kári Eiríksson, Magnús Vilhelm Björnsson

Demos

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Collisions and Constellations: On the Possible Intersection of Psychoethnography and Digital Storytelling

This proposal outlines the development of a collaborative model of ethnographic storytelling that utilizes readily available digital technology and ethnographic methodology to facilitate generative interactions toward the production of complex and evolving digital stories. Building on a methodology that I call psychoethnography, this project aims to create a fluid form of interactive digital storytelling that can be used in both academic and non-academic settings as a research and pedagogical tool.

Justin Armstrong

Evaluating Visual Perceptive Media

A contribution to Interactive Digital Storytelling is made through prototype The Break Up a film short for online TV and video using Object-Based Broadcasting. The prototype can change its music, video and color grade when informed by implicit interaction. This paper evaluates whether a music genre expected to suit the participant enhanced their experience. Half the participants saw The Break Up with music expected to suit them, half not, color grade and video were constant. They completed a form about their experience. Participants expected to not ‘enjoy’ the music scored their engagement somewhat higher (67/100) than those expected to like it (58/100). The prototype tested showed it was capable of automatically compositing media objects in response user context, combined with a positive reception to implicit personalization this indicates potential for further work.

Anna Frew, Ian Forrester

Biennale 4D – Exploring the Archives of the Swiss Pavilion at the «Biennale di Venezia» Art Exhibition

The Swiss pavilion at «Biennale di Venezia» offers a platform for national artists to expose their work. This well documented white cube displays the change of contemporary Swiss art from the early 50 s up to today. The project «Biennale 4D» pursues the goal to make the archives of these past art exhibitions more comprehensible by creating an interactive explorative environment through the use of innovative Virtual Reality technology. The project poses multiple challenges like visualization of historic content and its documentation, dealing with the heterogeneity and incompleteness of archives, interaction design and interaction mapping in VR space, integration of meta data as well as realizing a Virtual Reality experience for the public space with current VR technology.

Kathrin Koebel, Doris Agotai, Stefan Arisona, Matthias Oberli

Subject and Subjectivity: A Conversational Game Using Possible Worlds

We present Subject and Subjectivity, an exploratory conversational game where players are tasked with matching their friends with the ideal bachelor. The system uses a modal logic approach to modeling the narrative, based upon Marie-Laure Ryan’s possible worlds model for narrative [1]. The dialogue occurs in real-time and consists of navigating each character’s multiple and often conflicting world views. The system allows flexible character authoring, demonstrated by having the demo be playable with either hand-authored or procedurally generated characters. The demo serves as an early experiment into the use of possible worlds logic for interactive storytelling and dialogue systems.

Ben Kybartas, Clark Verbrugge, Jonathan Lessard

The AntWriter Improvisational Writing System: Visualizing and Coordinating Upcoming Actions

Improvisational storytelling requires participants to be aware of collaborators’ actions, and to anticipate each other’s upcoming actions so as to create a coherent story. This paper describes the AntWriter improvisational writing system, a computer-based shared workspace for collaborative storytelling. Our system uses a “temporal window” to provide a visualization of a short slice of time where participants can coordinate their upcoming actions during real-time text-based storytelling performances. By providing a concrete, manipulable representation of upcoming actions, AntWriter aims to support anticipation of collaborators’ upcoming actions as a means to encourage extremely short-term planning and coordination within real-time collaboration, without losing the immediacy and spontaneity of improvisational storytelling.

Alex Mitchell, Jude Yew, Lonce Wyse, Dennis Ang, Prashanth Thattai

Doctoral Consortium

Frontmatter

How Interactivity Is Changing in Immersive Performances

An Approach of Understanding the Use of Interactive Technologies in Performance Art

New, immersive or transmedia storytelling tools or game design elements can engage new audiences to watch performances. Companies which define themselves as performing art companies are creating immersive experiences that use various tactics in engaging their participants, including gamification mechanics and video game strategies, and also elements of interactive & transmedia storytelling, which increases the level of immersion as well. My research hypothesis is that new technology tools and immersive environments which incorporate video game mechanics used in performing arts context are changing the interactivity aspect of performances. To be able to scale or to define the level of interactivity in such productions it is necessary to perform an analysis using interactive storytelling, game studies and media archeology, but hermeneutical research and field studies (surveys and deep interviews) are also conducted. Phenomenological studies on the materiality of interaction design will also be used in defining the interactivity and the level of participation. In the current state of the work I’m focusing on “analogue” type of immersive performances (e.g. Danish company SIGNA) that can be analyzed with the help of a game studies approach, but I also focus on how these immersive performances create narrative environments. Parallel to this, I have conducted an audience survey which focused on whether the participants have the same interaction feeling as in video games or VR-environments.

Ágnes Karolina Bakk

Interactive Storytelling to Teach News Literacy to Children

In this information saturated era, one might argue that learning how to better recognize fake news, misinformation and disinformation are important skills to master. Not only that, but in a participatory paradigm, it seems useful for the user to learn certain journalistic skills. This is called news literacy. Some scholars have been researching the use of digital media to teach news literacy to teenagers and college students, in particular interactive storytelling and gaming. However, less is known about platforms for younger children. And yet a few of those platforms exist. This paper summarizes an ongoing doctoral research and presents preliminary results about the analysis of eight platforms aimed at teaching news literacy to children. We examined the lessons delivered and how interactive storytelling elements were incorporated. We make recommendations for the design of future interactive platforms to teach news literacy. Ultimately our work extends knowledge of how news literacy is being approached in interactive digital platforms and of how interactive storytelling can better be used to foster news literacy.

Ioli Campos

Enhancing Museums’ Experiences Through Games and Stories for Young Audiences

Museums promote cultural experiences through the exhibits and the stories behind them. Nevertheless, museums are not always designed to engage and interest young audiences, particularly teenagers. This Ph.D. proposal in Digital Media explores how digital technologies can facilitate Natural History and Science Museums in fostering and creating immersive museum experiences for teenagers. Especially by using digital storytelling along with location-based gaming. The overall objectives of the work are to establish guidelines, design, develop and study interactive storytelling and gamification experiences in those type of museums focusing in particular on delivering pleasurable and engaging experiences for teens of 15–17 years old.

Vanessa Cesário, António Coelho, Valentina Nisi

That’s not How It Should End: The Effect of Reader/Player Response on the Development of Narrative

My interactive novella, Writers Are Not Strangers, seeks to utilize the techniques suggested by studying Victorian serial stories and modern videogames alongside one another as interactive, fragmented, non-linear forms. Using the ChoiceScript programming language, this apocalyptic game-story aims to challenge the fixity of boundaries between long-standing terms such as ‘reader’, ‘writer’ and ‘text’, and invite the reader-player to question the nature of their engagements with texts and their creators. The novella will be accompanied by a creative-critical thesis which interprets the Victorian serial as an interactive form and the modern videogame as a serialized text, thereby further destabilizing critical and creative assumptions about both forms. The thesis attempts to provide personal responses and critical study within a framing narrative which performatively engages with the ideas under discussion. For the purposes of this consortium, I will provide a work-in-progress version of the creative novella for feedback.

Lynda Clark

Leveraging on Transmedia Entertainment-Education to Offer Tourists a Meaningful Experience

Interactive technologies provide the tools to empower audiences to participate in new interactive storytelling experiences applied to tourism. We envisage studying how transmedia entertainment-education experiences can expose tourists towards local pressing issues and social good while providing them with a rich entertaining and educating experience. We describe the research approach that leads to design and implementation of a bespoke transmedia entertainment education experience, composed by two interconnected components: an online participatory portal (“Há-Vita”) and a mobile context-aware story (Fragments of Laura). The experience was designed to encourage visitors to learn about Madeira’s rich natural heritage and develop knowledge and awareness about its history and biodiversity.

Mara Dionisio, Valentina Nisi, Nuno Correia

Embodied and Disembodied Voice: Characterizing Nonfiction Discourse in Cinematic-VR

Here, live-action ‘cinematic-VR, (also referred to as ‘360° video’) is considered as a distinct hybrid technology, in that photographic image capture and processing methods are coupled with VR head mounted display (HMD) technologies. This study examines cVR for its necessary reformulation of embodiment (and disembodiment) regarding both author and viewer, as they engage with pro-filmic reality via the respective technical apparatuses. For the author, the distinctive cVR production pipeline requires a shift in the treatment of the filmed scenario and their bodily relation to it; for the viewer, established structures of engagement with conventional (frame-bound) linear video are disrupted through the cognitive insertion of their body into the cVR scene.With embodiment as its central thematic concern, this study will provide a theoretical grounding for nonfiction cVR in terms of its epistemological affordances and limitations as a technology. Following a critique of cVR as a yet unresolved theoretical hybrid (as engendering assumptions of both filmic and VR modes of representation), a mixed, primarily phenomenological study will be employed to gain insights into the nature of discourse in nonfiction cVR, and its reformulated dynamics between author and viewer.

Phillip Doyle

Learning and Teaching Biodiversity Through a Storyteller Robot

This research project proposes the use of Child-Robot Interaction principles to boost the interest and engagement of young children in the biodiversity curriculum. We propose an architecture where a robot learns from children through an Interactive Story, while at the same time teaches them previous knowledge acquired in past interactions.

Maria José Ferreira, Valentina Nisi, Francisco Melo, Ana Paiva

Authoring Concepts and Tools for Interactive Digital Storytelling in the Field of Mobile Augmented Reality

Producing systems for entertainment computing such as mobile augmented reality applications with interactive digital storytelling components is a complex and interdisciplinary task. It is producing a new form of media. Emerging new technologies will add to the complexity of authoring desired systems in the future, with the sort of conceptualizing and producing entertaining content suitable for those experiences. Today no publicly available authoring tool exists for producing such systems, but each is made from scratch by programmers and content authors from different fields. Providing authoring concepts and tools for an adjustable system allowing the use of various technologies can shift effort from developing entertaining applications towards producing entertaining content and therefore content quality and entertainment may rise.

Antonia Kampa

NOOA: Maintaining Cultural Identity Through Intergenerational Storytelling and Digital Affinity Spaces

The possibility to preserve perspectives of reality with spontaneous creations allowed by the web tools that now empower common users with content production skills highlights the numerous opportunities for the present and future of cultural identity maintenance. Our research approaches digital storytelling during intergenerational dynamics as a stage for a participatory contribution to the maintenance of cultural identity. With an ethnographic approach and with partnerships with existing senior movements, we seek to (a) understand the storytelling processes during intergenerational dynamics, (b) develop a framework for the participative creation of narratives in the context of intergenerational cultural identity maintenance, (c) support the participatory maintenance of cultural identity through a set of workshops for intergenerational storytelling, (d) understand the challenges and opportunities promoted by digital affinity spaces for the maintenance of cultural identity. Our contribution proposes to develop the understanding of the role that interactive narratives can have in the context of cultural identity maintenance, by developing new usage strategies to enhance cultural mediation through social and ubiquitous storytelling strategies.

Juliana Monteiro, Carla Morais, Miguel Carvalhais

An Epistemological Approach to the Creation of Interactive VR Fiction Films

The PhD project presented in this paper introduces a proposal for an epistemological paradigm addressed to the creation of interactive immersive fiction films. In order to provide conceptual tools for the analysis and creation of a fluent and engaging interactive VR narrative, the study investigates the convergence of aesthetics, storytelling and interactivity. These theoretical foundations lead to the practical production of an interactive immersive film prototype. The main objective is to create a fluent interactive cinematographic experience in which the final feeling for the user is the sensation of having lived the story, with some degree of agency inside it.

María Cecilia Reyes

User and Player Engagement in Local News and/as Interactive Narratives

This paper presents a new approach to the understanding of gamification within the context of local news, foregrounding the varied ways that games and interactable narratives engage player/readers through increased interactability, relationship-building and dynamic storytelling. The research extends a model of Self Determination Theory in an approach for development of a new kind of local digital news-service where readers are given more possibilities to interact with the non-fiction narratives of news stories.

Torbjörn Svensson

Grammar Stories: A Proposal for the Narrativization of Abstract Contents

This research study revolves around the development of a process to transform abstract concepts into stories. Specifically, it works on the grammar rules of English which prove to be problematic for Italian learners of English as a foreign language. This study argues that content in story-form is better processed by the human brain compared to non-narrative content, and highlights how the discussion on narrativization of abstract content is still open. The proposed process could be the first step towards a new representation of abstract knowledge and possibly towards the automated creation of metaphorical stories.

Serena Zampolli

Workshops

Frontmatter

Bringing Together Interactive Digital Storytelling with Tangible Interaction: Challenges and Opportunities

This workshop aims to explore challenges and potential opportunities in bringing interactive digital storytelling into the realm of tangible and embodied interaction. To this end, experts from both fields are invited to present and discuss their ideas. Besides fostering discussion and potential collaborations, the goal is to come up with new and suitable computational storytelling models and define design guidelines/strategies.

Alejandro Catala, Mariët Theune, Cristina Sylla, Pedro Ribeiro

Film-Live

An Innovative Immersive and Interactive Cinema Experience

This full-day workshop introduces to Film-Live, an innovative and immersive cinema experience, which transforms the act of watching films into a participatory, interactive and engaging event. Film-Live is a film shot and broadcasted live that ends out of the screen: spectators of Film-Live are able to personally interact with the story, entering and exploring the narration by breaking the fourth wall. Working with both professionals and academics, participants will be able to experiment with live cinematography experience and create a short Film-Live, a choral work, which will be filmed, streamed and projected live. The main goal of the workshop is the investigation and discussion of possible applications of the Film-Live format, enhancing expressive and narrative interactions between film and reality, in order to actively engage with the audience.

Mattia Costa, Chiara Ligi, Francesca Piredda

Workshop Transmedia Journalism and Interactive Documentary in Dialogue

This half-day workshop promotes a hands-on approach to recent developments in transmedia storytelling and its application to journalism and interactive documentary (iDoc). Transmedia journalism, as well as any other application of transmedia storytelling in fictional and nonfictional realms, is characterized by the involvement of (a) multiple media platforms; (b) content expansion; and (c) audience engagement. The premise of iDocs is the active flow of information. With the support of digital technologies, iDocs presuppose that the user must be able to (physically) do something, which implies the audience can form its own storyline by choosing the path to experience the story, watching a video, seeing a photo, etc. The workshop starts with an introduction to the primordial role of transmedia audiences, the relationship between transmedia journalism and iDocs, and cases studies that illustrate the theory. The participants, organized in groups, work together to experience how to transform a single news story into a transmedia project.

Renira Rampazzo Gambarato, Alessandro Nanì

Authoring for Interactive Storytelling Workshop

One of the most significant challenges facing narrative systems research is the authoring of interactive storytelling, and the processes and technology to support it. In this workshop we propose to host a discussion and presented new work in this space from researchers in creative and technical domains from both the Hypertext and Interactive Storytelling communities.

Charlie Hargood, Alex Mitchell, David E. Millard, Ulrike Spierling

1st Workshop on the History of Expressive Systems

The first meeting of a new workshop series on the History of Expressive Systems (HEX) is being held at ICIDS 2017. By ‘expressive systems’, we broadly mean computer systems (or predigital procedural methods) that were developed with expressive or creative aims. HEX is meant to illuminate and celebrate the history of systems in this area, especially the untold histories of projects that are today forgotten or relatively unknown.

James Ryan, Mark J. Nelson

Backmatter

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