A Whale of a Tale

Begin With the End in Mind.

One of the challenges to writing for both a Narrative and An Immersive Narrative Adventure Game is story structure. Most of the narratives we write, from a single episode to the season’s story arch, usually follow a Whale Structure.

In the whale structure the head represents the Setup. It entices an audience/player with what’s at stake. The problem that needs resolution. Every story in fact, is a mystery. The mystery is usually hinted at within the first paragraph/sentence of the narrative.  

When done right, it creates a want to know, and a want to learn, what this adventure is all about? In Immersive Narrative Games we leverage these opportunities to delve deeper into the world building experience with challenges designed to acclimate an audience/player to the enticing aspects of the story, early on in its unfolding. Immersing the audience until:

The Inciting Incident.

The point of no return, They and the Character are committed to setting off on a journey together, exploring the conflict, the raising tension, until suddenly a moment of :


The Audience and Character are asked to reconsider where this story is going. What is is really about, be it a shift in perception or a plot changing event. The story becomes about something different, than what the now Immersed Audience/player first thought and or expected, the story tenaciously plods on fueled by the conflict climbing until


Tension is released! the secret revealed! The audience/player is exposed to the truth that has been hidden from them, and leaves them to consider the


The tail of the whale is a representation of its wake. A Reflection, moral evaluation. recounting the losses and gains in the story and the wash of consequences.

All our narratives begin and end with a Cliffhanger, a new mystery is presented with the intention of prompting the audience/players to question again, and thus investigate the next episode/ season.

Each episode must also be a standalone story, not necessarily dependent on any foreknowledge from other episodes, so that Geographically Targeted prompts can recruit player participation at any point during the narrative.

But that is a topic for another post.