Player Agency and the Relevance of Decisions

  • David Thue
  • Vadim Bulitko
  • Marcia Spetch
  • Trevon Romanuik
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 6432)


While many forms of storytelling are well-suited to the domain of entertainment, interactive storytelling remains unique in its ability to also afford its audiences a sense of having influence over what will happen next. We propose that the key to encouraging such feelings of agency in interactive stories lies in managing the perceived relevance of the decisions that players make while they play. To this end, we present the design of a system which automatically estimates the relevance of in-game decisions for each particular player, based on a dynamically learned model of their preferences for story content. By actively choosing among several potential consequences of a given player decision, the proposed system highlights the relevance of each decision while accommodating for its players’ preferences over potential story content.


Player Action Virtual Character Story Event Story Generation Player Model 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • David Thue
    • 1
  • Vadim Bulitko
    • 1
  • Marcia Spetch
    • 2
  • Trevon Romanuik
    • 1
  1. 1.Departments of Computing ScienceUniversity of AlbertaAlbertaCanada
  2. 2.PsychologyUniversity of AlbertaAlbertaCanada

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