Ever since I was asked to create a digital character for an interactive theatre performance in 2000, I have been exploring digital media with “something more” in mind. At the time I was working as a screenwriter and director in film and television. I realised that communicating with programmers was no different from how I had worked with cinematographers, sound engineers and editors.
It made sense to move my profession to the interactive media, since narrative construction in game design clearly resembled filmmaking. After taking a Master’s in Computer Science at The University of Stockholm, I eventually became guest researcher at the Swedish Institute of Computer Science (SICS).
I now preach how to embrace the specific possibilities that our interactive media offer. Since the narrative as a cognitive process has previously not been charted by research, nor explored within digital and interactive media, I see the need of a method which draws on emotion and learning to support interesting interaction in game design.
This site was created to communicate the understanding of the narrative as a cognitive process within digital and interactive media. I frequently refer to the cognitive psychologist Jerome Bruner’s theory on narrative construction in order to define the actual performance of elements that give the user a meaningful experience.
Moreover, I want to share my knowledge and experience in narrative construction to add an ethical view on how to use it. For example, we are often exposed to negative construction by stakeholders or lobbyists in certain areas. A positive narrative construction is exactly the opposite. It takes responsibility for human well being and does not polarize opinions or manipulate people’s emotions or learning. Understanding this will help you deconstruct the story and recognise who is sending the message.
The site will remain free of commercial influence. The frequency of posts is based on the interest, questions and thoughts that you share. Together we can enrich the world of game design by creating more conscious and engaging experiences.
Don´t hesitate to contact me on LinkedIn, Twitter (@gyllenback) or send me an e-mail.
Looking forward to meeting you!
PS See below the “director´s cut” of circumstances that made me create this site.
Links to the director’s cut:
Part 1 In search of the invisible narrative
Part 2 The benefit and disadvantage of unconsciousness
Part 3 When the cognitive vehicle of narrative backfire
Part 4 The need for retrieval of the consciousness