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Storytelling in an Autonomous Game World

Among the many challenges of creating their 3D open world action adventure debut title Pine (2019), Matthijs tells you all about telling stories in a digitally simulated ecology. How do you connect to characters and a storyline, while the actors for that story might not even exist? How do you guide players through a world that is constantly changing? Through a deep dive into the narrative and system design of 'Pine', this talk provides insights into a key aspect of games that's getting better as the medium develops.


Matthijs van de Laar is co-founder and creative director of Dutch game studio Twirlbound, a small development team focusing on colorful open world action adventure games. Beyond running a creative business, Matthijs is mainly concerned with the production, narrative and UX of their games. As of 2021, he is also chairperson of the local initiative Breda Game City, elevating the game industry around Twirlbound's home city of Breda and helping talented student teams shape a solid base to make games from.


Matthijs van de Laar