Background Story

The Serious Gaming group at KOM has been set up late 2008 and originates of the former Digital Storytelling group at the Computer Graphics Center in Darmstadt. There, RTD activities have been concentrated on Storytelling based Edutainment applications with a focus on the development of authoring environments for interactive media production.

INSCAPE Authoring Tool with Story Editor (ZGDV), lower center

 During the last decade, the relevance of Digital Storytelling and Gaming technology has increased significantly. More and more authors, content creators and developers from various application domains are using Digital Storytelling and Gaming techniques to create interactive content for their systems, e.g. branded stories to transport the philosophy of a product or a company, training and simulation scenarios, E-Learning and edutainment applications as well as any kind of serious games.

With respect to content production and the authoring process, a lot of existing authoring tools are available on the market, e.g. Flash, Director, 3DS, Maya, Toonz, Blender or different game engines and editors (e.g. Virtools, Quest3D, Adventure Game Studio or game specific editors such as Neverwinter Nights), which are commonly used to create these kinds of interactive stories. Most of them are restricted to a linear story representation (e.g. timelines) and there is a lack of instruments to organize and structure stories or to define object behaviors and interactivity in general. Hence, authoring complex, interactive, non-linear stories and application scenarios with many story branches and interactive story units might become -especially for people without programming skills- a long, challenging and confusing process.

Based on preliminary work and research results achieved by the former Storytelling group at ZGDV in the EU projects INSCAPE and U-CREATE, the Serious Gaming group at TUD provides a profound knowledge in the development of authoring environments for interactive content and multimedia appliances. The existing authoring platform, Story Engine, Story Editor and underlying methods and concepts will be continuosly enhanced within the context of the EU project 80Days (FP7, objective 4.1.2 Technology-Enhanced Learning).