|Session Name||Building Game Mechanics to Elevate Narrative in 'Oxenfree'|
|Company Name(s)||Night School Studio|
|Track / Format||Independent Games Summit|
When Night School set out to create their debut game, 'Oxenfree', they had one goal in mind: merge storytelling and mechanics as closely as possible. Throughout development, the developers constantly evaluated 'Oxenfree' through the lens of two critical questions: "Why is the player playing this?" and "What is the player doing while we have them?" In Night School's game, the "why" is the player defining Alex's story, and the "what" is a set of mechanics built to make interacting with the story feel personal and novel. This talk, from 'Oxenfree' co-creator Sean Krankel, will dive into the various design decisions that went into creating an acclaimed supernatural thriller rooted in communication and exploration.