The Fifth Workshop on
Intelligent Narrative Technologies Colocated with 8th AAAI Conference on
Artificial Intelligence in Interactive Digital Entertainment
October 8th and 9th at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California

About INT 5

About the INT Series

The Intelligent Narrative Technologies workshop series aims to advance research in artificial intelligence for the computational understanding and expression of narrative. This workshop brings together a multidisciplinary group of researchers including computer scientists, psychologists, narrative theorists, media theorists, artists, and members of the interactive entertainment industry. From this broad expertise, the workshop focuses on computational systems to represent, reason about, adapt, and perform interactive and non-interactive narrative experiences. This also includes fundamental research in relevant fields such as natural language processing, believable agents, commonsense reasoning and human narrative experiences.

Motivation

Narrative is a pervasive aspect of human culture; it is one of the fundamental frameworks by which people view the world and comprehend their experiences. The processes of understanding and manipulating a narrative comes naturally to people, but this task poses significant challenges to computational systems. As computers play an ever-increasing role in social interaction, education, and entertainment, they introduce novel opportunities for leveraging narrative technologies to facilitate communication.

The last several years has seen growing interest and progress in narrative intelligence. Approaches to story generation and adaptation continue to become more sophisticated as important concepts like as intentionality, suspense, and conflict are incorporated into narrative models. Methods for expressing stories are also advancing, especially in the areas of emotion modeling, character dialog, and environmental effects such as lighting and sound. The rapid growth of on-line knowledge and communication has prompted new interest in the long-standing AI goal of narrative understanding. There is also a growing body of research in narrative-based learning environments and authoring tools for narrative-based games.

In the field of interactive digital entertainment, game developers continue to explore new ways to weave rich narratives into interactive gameplay, from major AAA titles (e.g. Mass Effect 3, The Witcher II, Heavy Rain) to independent and "serious" games like Storyteller, which won an award for novelty at the 2012 Independent Games Festival. However, understanding the relationship between narrative and gameplay is an open research question, primarily because of the conflict between player agency and authorial control. Academic solutions remain mostly untested in commercial settings, while industry solutions often rely primarily on human-authored content. This workshop promises to feature the latest theories about how this gap can be bridged.

Research in this area offers many potential benefits for both industry and academic interests. Basic research on intelligent user interfaces and alternative modalities, often backed by human subject experiments, introduce novel possibilities for how game players experience rich and rewarding stories. At the same time, games provide AI researchers with realized artifacts, as well as communities that can share insights gleaned from building and deploying interactive narrative environments. Co-locating this workshop at AIIDE will bring these perspectives together in an open forum where challenges and best practices are being continually defined. The interactions will foster progress on these and other fronts, and encourage technology transfer from research to commercial gaming.