Linear Games with Probability & Possibilities

The Story Builder allows game designers create linear, narrative-driven stories with multiple outcomes. In terms of story structure,  a Story Builder game outline looks like this:

Partial game structure from Can You Make it in the VA? Click here to play the game.

This structure for a narrative game is helpful for new game designers just getting started with creating playable stories. In terms of design, the story moves straight from start to finish, but offers a variety of experiences and for players within this linear context. Most of the cards in the blueprint above is referred to as a “Slide” in the Story Builder. Then, “Choices” are added on a Slide, and choice outcomes are added as “Vignettes” on each Choice.

The engine doesn’t generate stories as a blueprint, I just used the visual above just to demonstrate structure. The story builder looks a bit more like a modern content management system (think WordPress, for example). Below are some examples (all taken from the VA Game).

The Dashboard

The game builder area for a playable story. These are the slides that make up each page of a game.

A Slide with Choices

This is the content development area for a slide. The game designer can add text, visuals, and choices for each slide here.

A Choice with Vignette

This is the content area for a specific choice. In this area, the game designer can add and manipulate the outcome and vignette of a choice.

In the next few posts, I’ll go more in depth walking through the Story Builder dashboard areas and how to develop and publish a story.

Try making your own games

Ready to create your own playable stories with the Story Builder? Here are a series of posts to get you going: