tional video games - which on the surface seemed random and unrelated, but when read as a wholetold the tale of an earlier escape attempt much in consonance with the objective of the game. Thisalso served as means to convey the way in which they could plan their escape.Here, the game space has been transformed into a platform for spatial narrative where objectswithin the game world told the story. Designers in such a process, have a great deal of control over when, where and how much information is conveyed to the players. Embedded narrative thus be-comes ideal for a multi-player experience where interactivity is heightened. In addition since bitsand pieces of the narratives are distributed across the game space, it also becomes an unstated chal-lenge within the gameplay, to piece together the narratives. And as Henry Jenkins mentions, em- bedded narrative can and often does occur within contested spaces
, players often have to overcomesome enemy or acquire new skills or complete a micro-mission to gain access to further embeddedstories. In our project, players had to engage in conversation with fellow inmates from other cell in-order to gain access to what was written on their walls during the short short duration of construc-tion work they had to do during the day. Jenkins uses the example of Half Life and says thatSuch a mixture of enacted and embedded narrative elements can allow for a balance be-tween the flexibility of interactivity and the coherence of a pre-authored narrative.
Embedded narrative thus makes story-telling in a game an interactive experience of challenges anddiscovery. However in an ideal interactive environment simulating real life, rules becomes the onlyconstriction to what can be done and what cannot be. In such a scenario, the designer’s feed of in-formation becomes inadequate and the role of emergence narrative and games as story creation en-gine takes over.
Procedurality and Emergent Narrative
Since our project was a ‘real life’ simulation of real life condition during the war, it was in a sorta perfect interactive game save the physical believability of the environment and constricting rules.Rules , however constricting, streamlines the ways in which players can interact and in a way con-trol the chaos of real life in the game and present the possibility of creation of coherent emergent
“Game design as Narrative Architecture”, in
First Person: New Media as Story, Perform-ance and Game
, edited by Noah Wardrip-Fruin and Pat Harrigan. (MIT Press, 2004)