Creating Story-Based Serious Games Using a Controlled Natural Language Domain Specific Modeling Language

Abstract

Creating serious games calls for a multidisciplinary design team, including game developers, subject-matter experts, pedagogical experts, and narrative designers. However, such multidisciplinary teams often experience communication and collaboration problems due to differences in terminology, background and the concerns of the people involved. As one step towards solving this problem, we developed a modeling language for authors of serious games to specify both the story and the pedagogical aspects of a narrative-based (i.e. story-based) serious game. The models created with the help of this language can then be processed in order to automatically generate (parts of) the game. The language is specifically designed to support the involvement of experts with a non-technical background. To achieve this, we employ a domain specific modeling language, i.e., a language specific for the domain of serious games and customizable to the terminology of the domain the serious game is dealing with. Furthermore, the language makes use of a Controlled Natural Language syntax and graphical notations. The combination of a domainspecific vocabulary, a natural language syntax, and an easy to understand graphical notation allows different experts to be actively involved in the specification of the serious game, as such increasing consensus and enhancing quality. Furthermore, the model-based approach allows shortening the development time (and therefore also the cost) of serious game development, thereby tackling one of the major barriers for the widespread use and development of serious games. In this chapter, we present Olga De Troyer Vrije Universiteit Brussel, DINF WISE, Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussel e-mail: olga.detroyer@vub.ac.be Frederik Van Broeckhoven Vrije Universiteit Brussel, DINF WISE, Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussel e-mail: frederik.van.broeckhoven@vub.ac.be Joachim Vlieghe Vrije Universiteit Brussel, DINF WISE, Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussel e-mail: joachim.vlieghe@vub.ac.be

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