Narrative design for games

Books

The Hero with a thousand faces – Joseph Campbell – Not about games but a seminal work on Narrative structure and archetypes

The Art of Game Design – a book of lenses – Jesse Schell – there is a considerable section of this which deals with Story.

Rules of Play: Game Design Fundamentals (The MIT Press) by Katie Salen and Eric Zimmerman  – a really expensive book, and not particularly about storytelling, but absolutely essential if you are serious about working in games design

The Game Narrative Toolbox (Focal Press Game Design Workshops) by Tobias Heussner , Toiya Kristen Finley , et al.

Video Game Storytelling: What Every Developer Needs to Know About Narrative Techniques Evan Skolnick

Narrative Design: The Craft of Writing for Games by Michael Breault

Wonderbook by Jeff Vandermeer – not specifically about games but an amazing resource on all aspects of imaginative writing

Blogs / websites

https://www.gamedesigning.org/learn/storytelling/  – these guys have all sorts of useful advice on all aspects of game design

https://www.gamasutra.com/blogs/ChrisStone/20190107/333798/The_evolution_of_video_games_as_a_storytelling_medium_and_the_role_of_narrative_in_modern_games.php – Gamasutra are also a really good resource

https://www.bgdf.com/node/26

https://boardgamegeek.com/ – Absolutely the best resource for finding out about individual games – including really obscure ones.

Journals etc.

There is a growing body of research about the topic, so if you have access to any libraries of research papers, I would definitely do a search for ‘narrative in games’ or ‘storytelling in games’. There are some free to view sources, which don’t require you to be a student or pay for access. I found this, for example:

https://scholarcommons.sc.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1165&context=tor

Google Scholar might be a good place to start searching

https://guides.lib.umich.edu/c.php?g=282990&p=1885548 – here is a list of journals and databases about video game design – where you might find specific articles about storytelling

It seems less easy to find a list of journals about board game design – they tend to turn up one-by-one if you google ‘journals of boardgame design’. You can do that. Here are a couple to keep you going

http://jbdgames.blogspot.com/

https://content.sciendo.com/view/journals/bgs/bgs-overview.xml

TED talks etc.

https://www.ted.com/talks/david_cage_how_video_games_turn_players_into_storytellers

https://www.ted.com/speakers/amy_green

https://www.ted.com/playlists/62/how_to_tell_a_story

https://www.ted.com/playlists/why_do_we_tell_stories

The Design in Narrative Design – YouTube

Narrative in Games – Role, Forms, Problems, and Potential …

DD2018: Artur Ganszyniec – Narrative-driven game design …

Intro to Narrative Design for Game Developers | raw tech …

7 Tips for Narrative Designer Hopefuls – Gamasutra

Courses

https://www.coursera.org/learn/video-game-story

https://www.coursera.org/learn/transmedia-storytelling

https://www.udemy.com/course/narrative-design-master-class/

Video Games/Apps

Bury me my love

Soma

Florence

What remains of Edith Finch?

Tabletop Games

Dixit

Gloom

Once Upon a Time

Nanofictionary

Above and Below

Software

Twine – https://twinery.org/ Tool for telling interactive non-linear stories

Ink – https://www.inklestudios.com/ink/ Scripting language that lies behind Inkle Studio’s interactive masterpieces, such as their adaptations of Steve Jackson’s ‘Sorcery!’ books

Quest – http://textadventures.co.uk/ Javascript library for creating ‘choose your own adventure’ style narratives

Eko Studio – https://studio.eko.com/ Tool for creating interactive video

Klynt – https://www.klynt.net/ Mixed media for interactive storytelling

Storymap – https://storymaps.arcgis.com/ Location based storytelling

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