Storytelling, Gamification and the Archive

Working in a Creative Arts university, with creative arts archives, with courses that include  Media and Communications, and Creative Writing, looking at integrating archives with games, and interactive storytelling, seems a perfect fit. I am also really interested in looking at ways to bring to life visually our more text based material, which includes our exciting records of the Guildford School of Art protest in 1968, involving a student sit in. This includes records such as student statements, governors statements, and posters. This provides a fascinating insight into student protest, activity, but also the nature of art education itself – theoretical/vocational? However, purely text based material can sometimes be off-putting to visual thinkers – I wanted to find a way to bring our collections to life, and look at how you can be inspired to create creative writing.

future is now at stake

There are various examples of how heritage and games combine, including examples from this Heritage Jam, using different software. I was particularly interested in looking at TWINE, an open source storytelling software, which can run on windows as well as linux. TWINE allows you to create interactive non linear stories, and is intuitive to use, providing instructions. To make the TWINE live you can upload the HTML file to a free TWINE hosting site. TWINE games mean the player (you) takes on a personna, and chooses various options

I was asked to host volunteers for Creative Writing and Media Communications, who had created TWINE games before. Hayden Lee, decided to create an interactive story from the Guildford School of Art sit in protest. Inspired by the newspaper clippings, student posters urging people to boycott Guildford School of Art, and descriptions of students, he decided to create a TWINE game, where you take on the personna of an interviewer/journalist from a newspaper and see how you can get your story…

Take a look at Hayden’s story here

Rebekah Taylor, Archivist & Special Collections Officer




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