The Non-Player Character: Exploring the believability of NPC presentation and behavior
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Over the last few decades there has been immense growth in the video game industry, and we have seen great improvements in both graphics and audio. Unfortunately, the development of artificial intelligence (AI) and non-player characters (NPCs) has not proceeded at the same pace. Although there have undoubtedly been improvements, the field as a whole has lagged behind its siblings.
Many of the problems with NPCs stem from the fact that they do not achieve a sufficient level of believability, particularly in the social arena. This is primarily related to the fact that the NPCs do not behave in ways that align with the expectations of the player. This can lead to the player misunderstanding the role and purpose of the NPC, which damages the believability of the game. By extension, this lessens the enjoyment the player can derive from the game. Hence, it is imperative that the design of the NPC be in line with player expectations.
This thesis takes a holistic view of NPCs, encompassing their design, evaluation, and player perceptions. It uses a design science methodology, and primarily uses qualitative and interpretative methods. It will provide a description of the various types of NPCs found in games, what their design elements are, and how they are interpreted by players.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Computer and Systems Sciences, Stockholm University , 2016. , 118 p.
Report Series / Department of Computer & Systems Sciences, ISSN 1101-8526 ; 16-003
Research subject Computer and Systems Sciences
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-128079ISBN: 978-91-7649-379-3OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-128079DiVA: diva2:912617
2016-05-20, Aula NOD, NOD-huset, Borgarfjordsgatan 12, Kista, 13:00 (English)
Bartle, Richard, Professor
Harko, Verhagen, DocentAsker, Lars, Docent
At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 5: Manuscript. Paper 6: Manuscript.
List of papers