Tightening the World-Plot Interface: or, Why I Am Obsessed With Conversation Models

Framed is an interactive comic game in which you move around the panels of the story, reordering events in order to change what happens in the story. It looks really attractive, too. When I first heard of this game, I was hugely excited about it. There aren’t that many entries in the interactive comic space, … Continue reading “Tightening the World-Plot Interface: or, Why I Am Obsessed With Conversation Models”

Versu: Conversation Implementation

This is one of several design articles about the new interactive narrative platform Versu, which Richard Evans and I have been building with a team at Linden Lab. Any platform focused on social interaction needs strong conversation handling. The following article goes into a certain amount of technical detail about what the system does and … Continue reading “Versu: Conversation Implementation”

Threaded Conversation Public Beta

“Threaded Conversation” is the extension I used to build Alabaster: a large and complex piece of work implementing a lot of my ideas about conversation modeling for use with Inform 7. Threaded Conversation is capable of handling several styles of interaction: old-school ASK/TELL, something closer to menu conversation, or (the default) a prompted ASK/TELL similar … Continue reading “Threaded Conversation Public Beta”

Conversational analysis studies

[A note: I really appreciate the feedback I’ve gotten on these conversation modeling posts, both in comments and off-blog. My goal here has been to take a first stab at explaining the model of Alabaster, since I’m going to have to write up a bunch of documentation for it; and to get some responses on … Continue reading “Conversational analysis studies”

Conversation Methodologies

My latest Homer in Silicon column is a bit of a departure from the norm: instead of offering a critique of a game or set of games, I discuss conversation modeling methods, in an attempt to share some interactive fiction theory with a wider audience and to encourage more discussion about conversation modeling in general. … Continue reading “Conversation Methodologies”


NB: This is a version of an old article I wrote on conversation in interactive fiction. While much of it is still applicable, I have written numerous other posts on the topic since, which expand on the overview provided here and suggest some more particulars about implementation. Conversation is one of the most challenging things … Continue reading “Conversation”