Left 4 Dead’s AI Director

This interview with Valve’s Doug Lombardi highlights Left 4 Dead’s AI Director, which I hadn’t heard of. Dynamic spawning is the first step towards the procedural storytelling I’ve been working on for the last couple of years. Finally some of this stuff is getting published.

Yes, dynamic procedural storytelling might ultimately never work. But, if you’ve played a pen and paper RPG you know it probably can. I’ve run these ideas through enough projects and models to feel it’s one of the next big story game revolutions, and these kinds of interviews get me all excited.

I know, I should write about it. Give me some time.

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3 thoughts on “Left 4 Dead’s AI Director

  1. I very much want to see advancements in procedural story-telling, but let me just take issue with something you said in this post:

    “””Yes, dynamic procedural storytelling might ultimately never work. But, if you’ve played a pen and paper RPG you know it probably can.”””

    I’ve played pen-and-paper RPGs. The story-telling in those is completely the opposite of “procedural”. It’s done by a human, right there, sitting right next to you. So it doesn’t really follow that procedural story-telling can work, unless you’re relying on strong, human-intelligence AI. I think that procedural storytelling will end up being a fairly different thing.

    I’m not trying to argue against procedural story telling here, just taking issue with the presentation of the idea.

  2. Good point. I probably should back that up now that I re-read it. It deserves more detail, but for now, let me rephrase as “if you’ve ever played a pen and paper RPG with a GM reading straight out of a splatbook you know it can still tell a better story then most games.”

    2 weeks in a row I’ve made this mistake. Unintentional, but poor. I’ll try and be more careful with my logic flow. 🙂 Thanks for pointing it out Christopher!

  3. Pingback: Mistresses: or What I'm Playing Right Now | Sean Vanaman

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