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December 14, 2019
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Video: Environmental storytelling in Spider: Rite of the Shrouded Moon

March 14, 2018 | By Emma Kidwell

March 14, 2018 | By Emma Kidwell
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More: Indie, Design, Video



Environmental storytelling is often accompanied with flavor text or a narrator describing their surroundings to the player. Visual and audio clues come together to help guide a narrative forward.

But without spoken word or text, how can designers convey information about a game's story through the environment? 

In this 2016 GDC session, Tiger Style's Randy Smith discusses how the story of Spider: Rite of the Shrouded Moon supports intertwining plot threads of multiple characters and interactive, solvable mysteries all without text or a single line of dialogue.

Smith also provides specific examples of the successes and failures encountered during development, drawing on lessons learned during his previous experiences in environmental storytelling. 

Narrative designers interested in learning the environmental storytelling techniques behind Spider: Rite of the Shrouded Moon can now watch the talk completely free via the official GDC YouTube channel!

About the GDC Vault

In addition to this presentation, the GDC Vault and its accompanying YouTube channel offers numerous other free videos, audio recordings, and slides from many of the recent Game Developers Conference events, and the service offers even more members-only content for GDC Vault subscribers.

Those who purchased All Access passes to recent events like GDC or VRDC already have full access to GDC Vault, and interested parties can apply for the individual subscription via a GDC Vault subscription page. Group subscriptions are also available: game-related schools and development studios who sign up for GDC Vault Studio Subscriptions can receive access for their entire office or company by contacting staff via the GDC Vault group subscription page. Finally, current subscribers with access issues can contact GDC Vault technical support.

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