A Narrative Architecture for Story-Driven Location-Based Mobile Games

  • Katsiaryna Naliuka
  • Tara Carrigy
  • Natasa Paterson
  • Mads Haahr
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 6537)


Dramatic improvements in smartphones over the last few years have positioned them as a major platform for interactive media content. In addition to being much more portable than laptop computers, smartphones also support a sophisticated combination of GPS, sensors and communications interfaces that allow extracting context information related to their environment, such as location, orientation and weather data. This combination of mobility and context-sensitivity opens up interesting possibilities in relation to interactive narrative, and for example allows audience immersion into an interactive story to be improved by placing the content in physical locations that are of direct relevance to the story. In this paper, we present a general-purpose narrative architecture that allows a considerable range of story-based game and guide content to be expressed in location-aware manner. We also present a case study of an actual location-aware augmented reality game, which demonstrates the architecture in a commercial setting and shows that it is sufficiently lightweight to run on the current generation of smartphones.


Narrative Architecture Mobile Gaming and Storytelling 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Aarseth, E.: Quest games as post-narrative discourse. In: Narrative across Media: The Languages of Storytelling, pp. 361–376. U. of Nebraska Press (2004)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Adams, E., Rollings, A.: Fundamentals of Game Design. Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River (2006)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Benford, S., Crabtree, A., Flintham, M., Drozd, A., Anastasi, R., Paxton, M., Tandavanitj, N., Adams, M., Row-Farr, J.: Can you see me now? ACM Trans. Comput.-Hum. Interact. 13(1), 100–133 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Björk, S., Falk, J., Hansson, R., Ljungstr, P.: Pirates! Using the physical world as a game board. In: Interact 2001: 8th IFIP TC.13 Conf. on HCI, pp. 9–13 (2001)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Brunnberg, L., Juhlin, O., Gustafsson, A.: Games for passengers: accounting for motion in location-based applications. In: FDG 2009: Proc. of the 4th Int. Conf. on Foundations of Digital Games, pp. 26–33 (2009)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Cheverst, K., Davies, N., Mitchell, K., Friday, A., Efstratiou, C.: Developing a context-aware electronic tourist guide: some issues and experiences. In: CHI 2000: Proc. of the SIGCHI Conf. on Human Factors in Comp. Systems, pp. 17–24. ACM, New York (2000)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Dow, S., Lee, J., Oezbek, C., MacIntyre, B., Bolter, J.D., Gandy, M.: Exploring spatial narratives and mixed reality experiences in Oakland Cemetery. In: Advances in Computer Entertainment Technology, pp. 51–60. ACM, New York (2005)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Howard, J.: Quests: Design, theory, and history in games and narratives. A.K. Peters, Wellesley (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Juul, J.: Half-Real: Video Games Between Real Rules and Fictional Worlds. MIT Press, Cambridge (2005)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Kjeldskov, J., Paay, J.: Augmenting the city with fiction: Fictional requirements for mobile guides. In: Mobile Interaction with the Real World 2007/5th Workshop on HCI in Mobile Guides Singapore, pp. 41–45 (2007)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    LeBlanc, M.: Feedback systems and the dramatic structure of competition. In: Game Developers Conference (1999)Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Malaka, R., Schneider, K., Kretschmer, U.: Stage-based augmented edutainment. In: Butz, A., Krüger, A., Olivier, P. (eds.) SG 2004. LNCS, vol. 3031, pp. 54–65. Springer, Heidelberg (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Mateas, M., Stern, A.: Structuring content in the facade interactive drama architecture. In: Proc. of the 1st Art. Intelligence and Interact. Dig. Entertainment Conf., pp. 93–98 (2005)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Murray, J.H.: Hamlet on the holodeck: The future of narrative in cyberspace. Free Press, New York (1997)Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Nisi, V., Oakley, I., Haahr, M.: Location-aware multimedia stories: Bringing together real and virtual spaces. In: ARTECH Conf. on Dig. Arts., pp. 72–81 (2008)Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Paay, J., Kjeldskov, J., Christensen, A., Ibsen, A., Jensen, D., Nielsen, G., Vutborg, R.: Location-based storytelling in the urban environment. In: OZCHI 2008: Proc. of the 20th Australasian Conf. on CHI, pp. 122–129. ACM, New York (2008)Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Roberts, D.L., Cantino, A.S., Isbell Jr., C.L.: Player autonomy versus designer intent: A case study of interactive tour guides. In: AIIDE, pp. 95–97 (2007)Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Salen, K., Zimmerman, E.: Rules of play: game design fundamentals. MIT Press, Cambridge (2004)Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Tosca, S.: The quest problem in computer games. In: Proc. of The Technologies for Interact. Dig. Storytelling and Entertainment Conf. (TIDSE), Darmstadt (2003)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Katsiaryna Naliuka
    • 1
  • Tara Carrigy
    • 1
  • Natasa Paterson
    • 1
  • Mads Haahr
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Computer Science and StatisticsTrinity CollegeDublinIreland

Personalised recommendations