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Hypertext as a Lens into Interactive Digital Narrative.

Millard, D. and Hargood, C., 2021. Hypertext as a Lens into Interactive Digital Narrative. In: International Conference on Interactive Digital Storytelling 2021, 7-10 December 2021, Tallinn, Estonia.

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millardICIDS2021.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial.



Interactive Narrative is blessed with a myriad of forms, this richness makes it hard to compare IDN systems or to develop general theories and tools as each example can seem like a special case. We take the approach of using hypertext as a method of inquiry to explore the similarities of different IDN forms. Using the Interactive Process Model to scope our analysis we systematically examine IDN from the perspective of hypertext structure. We show that hypertext can coherently explain the transition functions (the parts of the system that manages narrative state) across calligraphic, sculptural (storylets), adaptive, database driven, parser, and game narratives. In doing so we define a Hypertext Lens, made of layers of lexia state, story state, world model, and story engine. We also show how sculptural systems, parser fiction, and game narratives make use of interaction and presentation engines that complement and build upon these structures. Rather than trying to reconcile hypertext and IDN our approach instead presents hypertext as a useful thought pattern for approaching IDN that can bridge the gap between IDN forms and clarify their relationships to one another. Our analysis clearly shows a fluidity of form, encourages experimentation, and provides a mechanism through which theory can be applied widely.

Item Type:Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Group:Faculty of Science & Technology
ID Code:36234
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:10 Nov 2021 11:06
Last Modified:14 Mar 2022 14:30


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