I’ve been teaching, researching, creating, writing and commenting about interactive storytelling for the past 12+ years at UVic. It springs out of a lifelong interest in games of all sorts (especially board games and role-playing games), the rise of video games and other forms of interactive media (and my frequent disappointment in the level of storytelling in these media), and the power of play for learning and creativity.

This page collects concepts, resources and reflections related to my ongoing exploration as a teacher and a writer in the social power of games and other forms of interactive narrative.

Key concepts
  • interactivity
  • agency
  • narrative:
    • stories: embedded, emergent, contextual
  • immersion
    • willing suspension of disbelief
    • 4th wall, metafiction
  • game
    • design: rules, play, culture
  • point of view
    • first-person, second-person, third-person, god game, other?
  • ludonarrative dissonance

“Some such term is needed to mark the change we are experiencing, the invention of a new genre altogether, which is narrative in shape and that includes elements we associate with games.” — Janet Murray, “From Game-Story to Cyber-Drama”

Sub-genres, media & examples

How would you evaluate the interactivity; agency; narrative; and immersion of these examples?

Alternate Reality Game (ARG)

Augmented Reality Game (ARG)

Counter Novel



Escape Room

Geolocative Storytelling


Interactive Drama

Interactive Fiction

Interactive Memoir

Interactive Video

LARP (Live Action Role-Playing game)

Living Card Game

Narrative Board Game


Permanent Alternate Reality Game (PARG)

Role-Playing Game

Serious Game

Silent RPG

Solo Journaling RPG

Survival Simulator

Text Adventure

Video Game

  • Gone Home
  • Life is Strange
  • The Walking Dead
  • Journey

Virtual Reality

Visual Novel

Walking Simulator