Interactive Storytelling Tropes

Storytelling tropes that are made possible by the nature of interactive media (Video Games, Visual Novels, etc.). In other words, ways to tell stories that are unfeasible without a player actively shaping them.

Contrast pure gameplay tropes like Various Videogame Views, Video Game Difficulty Tropes, Video Game Interface Elements, etc.

Narrative branching

Mutually exclusive events occur in the story, depending on the player's actions.

Variable endings

The story shows different outcomes depending on the player's actions.

Narrative rearranging/re-sequencing

Same events occur in the story but the player can decide on the order of their occurrence or presentation.

Narrative filigree

Some events only occur in the story if the player takes specific actions and are non-essential to overall plot.

Narrative parallelization

Gameplay input runs in parallel with story output.

  • Dialog During Gameplay
    Audio-only dialogue runs in parallel with the player's actions.
  • Enemy Chatter
    Mooks can talk with each other, as long as the player doesn't disturb them.
  • Expository Gameplay Limitation
    The range of actions the player can carry out in-game is temporarily limited in order to better focus their attention on exposition.
  • Playable Epilogue
    The player is given a degree of control over the ending "cutscene".