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The technology of Runestone’s games is based on three core elements: AIs, the Language Machine, and our Story Template construct. With these as our basic building blocks we create a living, breathing gameworld with believable AIs, free-form communication between players and AIs, and a new, personalized adventure waiting around every corner.

Runestone’s AIs are individual, believable characters with their own independent stories in the gameworld. They have a complex emotional model, making them react according to their mood and change mood according to events around them. Together with the emotional model, a basic event-response system gives the AIs a realistic response to everyday interaction. The AIs also have their own sets of motivations, based partly on their current mood, partly on the roles they are designed to play in the game, and as the game unfolds, they live their own lives side by side with the players, constantly following their own paths and goals.

When needed, the Gamemaster AI can carefully choose one or more AIs, based on their current moods and motivations, to act as supporting cast in a player’s story. Since the cast changes with the state of the game and its AIs, no two stories will have the exact same flow or outcome.

Language Machine
The Language Machine allows players to communicate with other players and AIs alike. It supports free-form dialog - it is possible to talk to anyone about anything in the game world - and it eliminates the traditional difference between player and AI communication, making players and AIs equals in the complex game of social interaction. Through a unique, easy-to-use information browsing interface, the Language Machine supports information sharing as a key gameplay element, making it easy for players to share the rumors and facts that play a vital role in how stories evolve.

Story Templates
Story Templates drive the stories in Runestone’s games. As opposed to traditional CRPGs, Runestone games do not have a pre-defined storyline, forcing the players to follow more or less subtle paths. Instead a hierarchical system of template story elements makes it possible to adapt stories to the current game state, cast players in stories that match their desires, and add and modify stories in a continuously changing game world. Actors in the stories are cast on the fly, and many stories can substitute players for AIs and vice versa, providing the necessary flexibility for an online game world. The Story Template system works for personal, single player stories as well as worldwide epics, and stories can be reused in a number of variations.
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