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Game Narrative Summit: Dynamic Narrative Systems in 'Elsinore'

Connor Fallon  (Lead Designer, Golden Glitch)

Location: Room 3007, West Hall

Date: Tuesday, March 22

Time: 4:40 pm - 5:10 pm

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

Topic: Game Narrative

Format: Session

Viewing Experience: In-Person

Vault Recording: Video

Audience Level: No

Elsinore (Finalist: "Excellence in Narrative" and "Excellence in Design," IGF 2020) was praised for the breadth and depth of scenarios the game allowed players to explore. At the core of Elsinore's flexibility was its narrative simulation engine, which allowed the game to dynamically respond to all sorts of player actions in surprising ways. However, such systems never come without complications.

Using specific examples, this talk will dive into how Elsinore's narrative and simulation elements were woven together, the advantages of this approach, and how it could be applied to other games. It will also explore all the ways these systems can go wrong, the way these complications manifest, and how the Elsinore team tackled these issues.


Attendees will learn about the challenges involved in creating an open-ended narrative game. They will learn the techniques Golden Glitch Studios used in Elsinore to create and manage content that is highly dynamic and still narratively compelling.

Intended Audience

Writers, designers, and engineers interested in how to execute responsive, real-time, and/or open-ended narrative elements in their games. Open world and sandbox projects will find a lot of value here, as will narrative games of all stripes.