My research involves creating and evaluating adaptive gameenvironments using player models created using data-driventechniques and algorithms. I hypothesize that I will be able tochange parts of a game to elicit certain behaviors from players,and that these changes will also result in an increase ofengagement and/or intrinsic motivation.
In this paper, we present adaptive quests, an extension to the dominant quest model that guides and motivates gameplay in MMORPG shared worlds. The standard model has proven effective, but is significantly incompatible with the desire for player driven change in the world. We present an incremental step to increasing player impact, discuss the problems it creates with the quest model, and show how adaptive quests can help reconcile the two. We present simulation experiments supporting not only that adaptive quests help mitigate those problems, but that they can actually improve them over the standard model.
Players of digital games face numerous choices as to what kind of games to play and what kind of game content or in-game activities to opt for. Among these, game content plays an important role in keeping players engaged so as to increase revenues for the gaming industry. However, while nowadays a lot of game content is generated using procedural content generation, automatically determining the kind of content that suits players' skills still poses challenges to game developers. Addressing this challenge, we present matrix- and tensor factorization based game content recommender systems for recommending quests in a single player role-playing game. We discuss the theory behind latent factor models for recommender systems and derive an algorithm for tensor factorizations to decompose collections of bipartite matrices. Extensive online bucket type tests reveal that our novel recommender system retained more players and recommended more engaging quests than handcrafted content-based and previous collaborative filtering approaches.
In this paper, we discuss motivations for studying interactive narrative in shared, persistent worlds using the established conventions of quest-based MMORPGs. We present a framework for categorizing the various techniques used in these games according to the interaction between the world model and the quest model . Using this framework we generalize recent games to present a more dynamic world model, and investigate extensions to the quest model to support storytelling through adaptive quest narratives.
This work proposes an engine for the Creation Of Novel Adventure Narrative (CONAN), which is a procedural quest generator. It uses a planning approach to story generation. The engine is tested on its ability to create quests, which are sets of actions that must be performed in order to achieve a certain goal, usually for a reward. The engine takes in a world description represented as a set of facts, including characters, locations, and items, and generates quests according to the state of the world and the preferences of the characters. We evaluate quests through the classification of the motivations behind the quests, based on the sequences of actions required to complete the quests. We also compare different world descriptions and analyze the difference in motivations for the quests produced by the engine. Compared against human structural quest analysis, the current engine was found to be able to replicate the quest structures found in commercial video game quests.