Triggering core emotional responses from interactive narratives
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Interactive narrative video games are considered capable of engendering emotional responses from players. This idea extends from the presupposition that the player has a level of control over the outcome of an interactive narrative's story, and therefore develops an emotional connection to it. However, interactive narratives are unlike any other form of narrative, and cast the player as part author and part audience. To better account for this dual role, I propose the term viewer-user instead of player. The prescriptive nature of story choices in interactive narratives inhibits the viewer-user from making an emotional investment. Drawing on my acting training, I explore how emotional connections are made in narratives, and how interactive narratives need to be rethought in order to truly engage the viewer-user as a successful medium.