Our narrative goal is to weave the story of the Boston Massacre by focusing on the relationships of those involved and letting their stories speak for themselves without commentary of rights and wrongs or “historical truth.” We want our narrative to be a rich and interactive experience that allows the player to investigate the virtual world on their own terms and form their own conclusions based on what they find. By offering this amount of agency to the player, it is our hope they will be more engaged with the material, and as a result, more engaged with history, while building critical thinking skills.
The narrative will be built through research of depositions and other source materials that describe the lives and relationships of Bostonians and British soldiers involved in the Massacre. We will also be conscious and careful to craft our narrative in a way that is not entirely dependent upon the depositions of only the few white men who gave depositions. Although they make up a large portion of our written evidence, they are not the only players involved in the massacre, and our narrative will reflect as such. For example, British soldiers married and courted Boston women, who might find themselves caught between loyalties. Since we are more focused on the social and cultural mysteries and tangles surrounding the Boston Massacre, it will be important for our team to include these stories.
Although final implementation may differ, we will begin by creating the investigative dialogue within Twine. By using Twine, we will be able to create conversations with dialogue options that allow the player to have some agency over their character and the lines of questioning they may take as an official recording depositions for the city. Hopefully some variations of endgame will be achievable using Twine and player choices.
We will also work with the Sound Team in order to share research/dialogue/narrative decisions that may affect the sounds of the landscape and the direction of conversations. Some sounds will be more important than others to build a narrative, and the Narrative Team will be happy to assist in identifying these and placing them within the narrative context within the game.
Although we understand that time and resources may limit what we’re able to achieve in terms of storyline size and complexity, we are committed to the concept creation of a detailed and interactive narrative that will (hopefully) grab a player’s attention and present them with historical context about the Boston Massacre that may force them to see the event in a new, or perhaps more nuanced, light.
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