A Framework for Classifying and Describing Authoring Tools for Interactive Digital Narrative

Yotam Shibolet, Noam Knoller, Hartmut Koenitz*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review


Authoring tools are a crucial component in the practice and research of interactive digital narrative design, yet no recent meta-analysis or mapping of such tools exists that would make it possible to comparatively study their defining qualities and characteristics and their effects on the artefacts produced with them. As a first step towards this goal, we created an online resource in which we surveyed and classified over 300 tools. This paper lays out our proposed categorisation and description framework for IDN authoring tools. After exploring our definition of authoring tools and research methodology, we describe 9 categories and 38 descriptors for tool analysis and comparison. We conclude with a sample analysis of Twine.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInteractive Storytelling
Subtitle of host publication11th International Conference on Interactive Digital Storytelling, ICIDS 2018, Dublin, Ireland, December 5–8, 2018, Proceedings
EditorsRebecca Rouse, Hartmut Koenitz, Mads Haahr
Place of PublicationCham
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-04028-4
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-04027-7
Publication statusPublished - 21 Nov 2018

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349


  • Authoring tool
  • Digital tools
  • software studies
  • game design elements
  • game addiction
  • interactive narrative design
  • Interactive storytelling
  • Interactive narrative
  • interface design
  • authoring interface
  • user interface
  • game engines
  • Augmented reality
  • Hypertext
  • virtual reality
  • software architecture
  • interactive media


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