Dialogue implementation and working with writers.


Hi all,

Been thinking about doing some small scope narrative based side projects, potentially teaming up with some writers.

Games would likely be highly dialogue driven with branching dialogue trees. Working with non-coder writers I've been looking at potential work flows and tools to make life easier and realistically think this can only be achieved if the dialogue system is driven by external files. JSON seems like the best option.

Was wondering what tools/workflows people recommend?

I've had an initial look at:
twine JSON exports,
yarn/yarnspinner + chatterbox,
and NoobsWeStand's system in the tutorial section.

Was wondering what if anyone of these had tried and had any feedback on them or other approaches.
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šŸ§ *penguin noises*
GMC Elder
JSON is intrinsically hierarchical, so it works good for data that is tree-like in nature. Dialogue trees tend to not actually be trees, though (having loops). Usually there's also two fundamentally different types of dialogue nodes: dialogue and choices. (You probably want a "execute arbitrary story animation thing" node as well for things like moving characters, changing rooms, and adding items). Usually a "branch" contains zero or more messages (or arbitrary effects) followed by a choice where each option changes the branch. It wouldn't be impossible to just store the branches as just text (with some markup for things like which character is talking) and then have more structured data for choices (whether they have prerequisites, which branch they jump to, etc)