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Walking, Talking, and Projectiles: Storytelling Tools in 'Destiny 2'


Evan Moran (Senior Tools Engineer, Bungie)

Location: Room 20, North Hall

Date: Wednesday, March 21

Time: 5:00pm - 6:00pm

Pass Type: All Access, GDC Conference + Summits, GDC Conference - Get your pass now!

Topic: Programming

Format: Session

Vault Recording: Video

Audience Level: All

'Destiny 2' is a cooperative game with a heavy focus on storytelling. As it turns out, designing stories that are shared by a three-person fire team requires a novel approach. Evan Moran will go in-depth into a new visual scripting tool called the Scene Editor that builds stories by coordinating AI movement and behavior. This technique for non-cinematic stories keeps players in the heart of the action. This talk showcases several examples from the beginning of 'Destiny 2', and explores the ways this new visual language supports complex coordinated interactions while chronicling surprises and pitfalls the team encountered along the way.


With tool demos alongside illustrations from Destiny 2's Homecoming mission, attendees will understand the visual scripting design choices (like creating clarity by minimizing connector lines, and supporting reuse by enabling parameterization) that allow content creators to tell immersive stories by controlling AI, coordinating async behavior, and triggering carefully-timed subsystems.

Intended Audience

This talk is for anyone interested in visual scripting for storytelling or in hearing about the challenges Bungie faced with telling stories through AI control. The difficulty level is accessible for people with any scripting background, though it will particularly appeal to programming language and UI enthusiasts!