IPB

Welcome Guest ( Log In | Register )

 
Reply to this topicStart new topic
> My Honours Project, looking for occasional feedback/suggestions
Tarantio
post Oct 28 2010, 05:31 PM
Post #1


NyanNyanNyan
************

Group: Established Members
Posts: 2,157
Joined: 28-March 03
From: Dundee
Member No.: 191
Gender: Male



Hey folks!

As some of you know, I'm finally doing my honours year at Uni, where I'm studying Computer Games Technology (final year, where we get our degree grade), and a large part of the year (half our credits, hence half our final grade) is the honours project and dissertation. I know quite a few of you folks on the board are gamers to some degree, others writers, and all of you are intelligent, so I thought I'd post up a quick blurb about what I've chosen as my research question, as well as a link to my blog, in the hopes that those of you interested might give it a read and, preferably, give me some feedback every now and then. Also, if anyone knows of relevant research material, suggestions are more than welcome; I need to get reading and taking notes ASAP.

So, my research question:

"Can existing story writing techniques be adapted for use by an A.I. to generate plots for story-driven games? is what it says on my blog; this is an early draft of the question, though.

Over the next six months or so I'll be researching and experimenting the topic, with the aim of creating a set of tools to build simple, structured plots, as well as a procedural AI to do the building; at this stage, my primary focus is the toolset, with the AI experiments being used to prove their success.

I'm keeping a blog here. It's fairly small at the moment, but we're still in the stage of setting and presenting our research questions just now, so there'll be more on a regular basis.

I appreciate any time you all take to have a look at least, and anyone with comments or suggestions gets a free hug at the project's (hopefully successful) conclusion.

Cheers everyone!


--------------------
When, will I, will I be famous?

I CAN'T ANSWER THAT, I CAN'T ANSWER THAT.

-Tara and DACE sing is available from DACETRON ltd.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Mata
post Oct 31 2010, 11:07 AM
Post #2


'Trouble Down Pit' now online!
***************

Group: Admin
Posts: 10,206
Joined: 22-February 03
From: Southern UK
Member No.: 1
Gender: Male



Hm, tricky.

What are the 'existing story-telling techniques' that you are going to use? Constructing a story is easy, it's just a sequence of events, but making a good plot is harder. There are structures that can be used to produce a satisfying escalation in events, but there is quite a lot of argument about how to do this.

I would perhaps start with one of the basic storytelling techniques that children learn: the 'fortunately/unfortunately' game. This is where a piece of paper is passed around a group and each person only sees the previous person's line of writing. Each person then writes a line, alternating between starting with 'fortunately' and 'unfortunately'. Sometimes you get remarkably coherent stories out of this game.

What this can demonstrate is that a sequence of events where the protagonist is constantly challenged and fails (unfortunately) is much more satisfying than a narrative where the hero achieves success (which is more commonly the structure of computer game narratives and the main reason that they usually aren't very good).

Have a look at Campbell (Hero with a thousand faces), Jung (Four Archetypes), and Key (Story). These are the major players in narrative creation and analysis. Personally I really like Sallie Tisdale's 'Will Write For Shoes' - it has no critical reputation but it is a damn good guide on how to structure a plot and create interesting characters.

Another important question would be: what kind of 'story-driven game' are you trying to make? Prince of Persia (third-person action), Fallout 3 (western RPG), Final Fantasy (eastern RPG), Solstice (isometric puzzler), Blade Runner (detective point'n'click with multiple endings)... Something else? The demands on your software will be different for each one.

Do you want your AI to tell a story (plot), set quests (gameplay structure), or build a world (narrative construction)?

Personally, I'd say that at the moment you've set yourself too big a question - automated world building and AI response to the environments would be a big task by itself. I suspect you'll need to narrow your question further to be able to produce a piece of work that satisfyingly answers it.

I look forward to seeing how it develops!


--------------------
Trouble Down Pit: Still updated every Monday and Friday
The Matazone Games blog
The Matazone Shop The Matazone Blog
The Matazone Corset Shop: Snobz corsets at 10% off their recommended price!
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Tarantio
post Nov 12 2010, 03:36 PM
Post #3


NyanNyanNyan
************

Group: Established Members
Posts: 2,157
Joined: 28-March 03
From: Dundee
Member No.: 191
Gender: Male



I had my first chat with my project supervisor today, it went pretty well. He seemed to think that keeping it focussed was the best way to go about it as well; I told him about your ideas, and he seemed to like the "fortunately, unfortunately" one as a starting point; it provides a nicely structured, semi-linear structure to form a quick starting point that can be expanded upon as I go.

I'm aiming more for plot structures, Mata, rather than details, so my initial focus will be on creating the tools for the AI to use; forming some sort of basic unit of plot that can be constructed and manipulated by the AI gives me a portable starting point that should make the logic engine of the AI simple to build. The primary challenge here isn't in forming a structure, it's more trying to build an AI that forms sensible plots, but I have to get the tools in place first.

Thanks for the recommendations, Mata. One or two were already on my reading list, but some solid recommendations are very much appreciated smile.gif


--------------------
When, will I, will I be famous?

I CAN'T ANSWER THAT, I CAN'T ANSWER THAT.

-Tara and DACE sing is available from DACETRON ltd.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post

Reply to this topicStart new topic
1 User(s) are reading this topic (1 Guests and 0 Anonymous Users)
0 Members:

 



Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 22nd October 2017 - 09:36 PM
Use these links if you're going to shop at Amazon and a percentage of what you spend goes towards helping this site!