GDC is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

View, browse and sort the ever-growing list of sessions by day, pass type, topic, and format. With this Session Viewer, you can view GDC 2023 session details and speakers, and share your favorites via social media. You will be able to build your schedule and access it during the show via export or Mobile App, once live. Sessions do fill up and seating is first come, first serve, so arrive early to sessions that you would like to attend.

Game Narrative Summit: Story: An Atomic Theory

Jeremy Bernstein  (Principal Writer, Volition)

Location: Room 2006, West Hall

Date: Monday, March 20

Time: 3:00 pm - 3:30 pm

Pass Type: All Access Pass, Summits Pass

Topic: Game Narrative

Format: Lecture

Vault Recording: Video

Audience Level: All

Story. What, in fact, IS it?

It's hard to think of anything more intrinsic to human culture that is as difficult to define as a story. This talk will offer a solid definition of story that, when explored in detail, proves to be a sort of "atomic theory" of story, breaking it down into the fundamental particles of narrative and the interacting forces between them.

Jeremy Bernstein, Principal Writer at Volition, will also explore the implications these particles and forces have in game design, leading to a Grand Unified Theory of Story.


Attendees will gain a framework for thinking about narrative in games that shows how the definition of story and the requirements of gameplay are really two sides of the same coin: an exceptionally useful tool for talking about narrative with game designers.

Intended Audience

This is for anyone, writer or not, looking to deepen their understanding of story and the interweaving of narrative and gameplay at a fundamental level.