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Publication numberUS20100331088 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 12/493,443
Publication date30 Dec 2010
Filing date29 Jun 2009
Priority date29 Jun 2009
Publication number12493443, 493443, US 2010/0331088 A1, US 2010/331088 A1, US 20100331088 A1, US 20100331088A1, US 2010331088 A1, US 2010331088A1, US-A1-20100331088, US-A1-2010331088, US2010/0331088A1, US2010/331088A1, US20100331088 A1, US20100331088A1, US2010331088 A1, US2010331088A1
InventorsDaniel Culbert
Original AssigneeDaniel Jason Culbert
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Method and System for Real Time Collaborative Story Generation and Scoring
US 20100331088 A1
Abstract
This is a method and system for collaborative story generation and scoring based on real time player story line submissions and voting.
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Claims(16)
1. A method for collaborative story creation and scoring, comprising:
a. providing a plurality of devices with a means to receive player story line submissions and player votes, and communicate said story lines and votes to all said devices over a network,
b. providing a game server that collect said player story line submissions and player votes,
c. providing players to generate said story line submissions and votes,
d. collecting player story line submissions,
e. collecting player votes,
f. determining the winning story line from said story line submissions based on said votes,
g. adjusting the scores of said players based on the votes submitted and said winning story line,
h. adding said winning line to the story, whereby said players learn effective story line creation techniques and effective social interaction.
2. The method of claim 1 wherein said story line submissions are partially created by said game server.
3. The method of claim 2 wherein said scores of said players are further adjusted by said players voting for story line submissions that are created by said game server.
4. The method of claim 1 wherein said scores of players are further adjusted by the time of submission for said story line submissions.
5. The method of claim 1 wherein said scores of said players are further adjusted by the grammatical correctness of said story lines.
6. The method of claim 1 further including controlling story line submissions round-robin, comprising:
a. allowing only one player at a time to submit a story line,
b. allowing a plurality players to vote on said story line,
c. changing the player who is allowed to submit a story line.
7. The method of claim 6 wherein said devices are run on a high-speed, low latency network, wherein said story lines are cut off at random times, and said scores of said players are further adjusted by the grammatical correctness of subsequent story lines that compliment the current story.
8. The method of claim 1 further including controlling said submitting story lines and said submitting votes in turns, comprising:
a. allowing all of said players to submit story lines first,
b. waiting for said story lines, then allowing said players to vote on said story lines second,
c. choosing the winning story line, scoring said players, and displaying results third,
d. continuing said turns until the story is complete.
9. A machine for collaborative story generation and scoring, comprising:
a. a story line submission means for a plurality of players which said players can use to submit story lines submissions,
b. a voting means for said plurality of players which said players can use to cast votes on said story line submissions,
c. a display for rendering said story lines and votes,
d. a game server which will:
1. choose the winning line from said story line submissions,
2. adjust scores for said players based on said votes and said winning story line,
whereby said players learn effective story line creation techniques and effective social interaction.
10. The machine of claim 9 wherein said game server also submits story lines along with the players.
11. The machine of claim 9 wherein said scores of said players are further adjusted by said players voting for story line submissions that are created by said game server.
12. The machine of claim 9 wherein said scores of players are further adjusted by the time of submission for said story line submissions.
13. The machine of claim 9 wherein said scores of said players are further adjusted by the grammatical correctness of said story lines.
14. The machine of claim 9 further including a means to control story line submissions round-robin, comprising:
a. allowing only one player at a time to submit a story line,
b. allowing a plurality players to vote on said story line,
c. changing the player who is allowed to submit a story line.
15. The machine of claim 14 further including a means by said game server to cut off story line submissions at random times, with said scores of said players further adjusted by the grammatical correctness of subsequent story lines that compliment what has been submitted.
16. The machine of claim 9 further including a means to control said submitting story lines and said submitting votes in turns, comprising:
a. allowing said players to submit story lines first,
b. waiting for said story lines, then allowing said players to vote on said story lines second,
c. choosing the winning story line, scoring said players, and displaying results third,
d. continuing said turns until the story is complete.
Description
    BACKGROUND FIELD
  • [0001]
    This invention relates to computer assisted games, and the Internet.
  • BACKGROUND ART
  • [0002]
    Story telling is a major part of every culture. The activity serves to entertain, to unite, to preserve history, and to teach. With the assistance of computers and the Internet, many forms of story telling are now possible that weren't before. Not surprisingly, the bulk of these modern inventions use the computer to assist in the actual story creation by prompting with or creating actual story content. U.S. Pat. No. 6,859,211 to Friedlander, Feb. 22, 2005, describes a system where the system prompts a user to write a story based on an image and a collection of words associated with the image. U.S. Pat. No. 7,333,967 to Bringsjord and Ferrucci, Feb. 19, 2008, describes a system where the story is automatically generated in its entirety. This is a divergence from pen and paper type systems, as described by U.S. Pat. No. 5,100,154 to Mullins, Mar. 31, 1992, where the primary content and generation is done by the players. The distinct advantage humans retain over computers and any other system is their ability to create. The drama technique called improvisation and variants therein is a top example. The first and foremost advantage of computers is the ability to bring players anywhere in the world together, and offer real time, live interactions between them that aren't possible without machine controlled game regulation.
  • [0003]
    Although each of the inventions above have at least one distinct purpose, e.g. a system that heavily prompts the user with content can assist challenged individuals in reading or writing skills, none of the prior art addresses all these points. With real time, simultaneous group-based, player-driven story generation with computer assisted grouping, scoring, and voting as described in the ensuing description and accompanying drawings, the method and system described maximizes creativity (content is created by the players) and use of grammar skills, while at the same time improving social skills (creation and scoring is affected by knowing how others will behave in the group).
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • [0004]
    In accordance with one embodiment, this is a method and system for real time collaborative story generation and scoring. In real time on one or more computers or mobile devices, users enter story lines or even partial lines to continue a currently running story. All participants also vote on which lines they like the best, line accuracy, or any other metric. Winning lines are added to and displayed with the story in real time as users continue to play. Voting over the course of the story generation in part determines the winner and final scores, with additional factors including, but not limited to, who submitted winning lines, and how quickly. Voting and story creation can happen simultaneously, sequentially (line submission, then voting), or round-robin (individual submission/voting rounds).
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • [0005]
    FIG. 1 is a diagram of a multi-user internet game environment, used in the preferred embodiment.
  • [0006]
    FIG. 2 is a diagram of the process in the preferred embodiment by which users enter lines, vote, and are scored.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION
  • [0007]
    A modern multiplayer online computer game setup and the preferred embodiment setup for this invention is shown in FIG. 1. One or more players interact with one or more computers [101], which communicate with one or more servers [104] through a network and routers [103]. These servers collect the players' actions and responses, and instruct each computer [101] what to do next, with visuals typically displayed on a computer monitor. In a smaller game setup, the entire system could be implemented on a single computer. Given the capabilities of modern day cell phones, these devices can also be used as clients for this invention [102]. For advanced cell phones, the connection, processing, and rendering can be very similar to a traditional computer. For simpler cell phones, SMS can be used as the communication medium, with simple SMS text rendering as the primary interface. For all client computers, alternatives to traditional input are possible, including text to speech output/speech recognition input in lieu of a traditional computer keyboard and display, or voice only, as the core input and output of this game is words (spoken, written, or in any other form). This invention runs on any form of these systems, the preferred form being a networked multi-user system, using simple HTML/web access as the rendering format.
  • [0008]
    In the preferred embodiment, the process by which users create stories is shown in FIG. 2. To begin, a player creates a story with a preferred title, number of lines, and number of players, and waits for other players to join, typically from other remote computers or mobile devices [201]. Once there are enough players, each player submits their addition—usually a single story line—to the story as a candidate for continuing the story [202]. Time is a factor, so additions of any form are typically very short. Once everyone has submitted their story line, the new candidates are listed for everyone to vote on [203]. Although it can be shown, the data on which user submitted which line is not revealed in the preferred embodiment. Everyone is free to vote for all, or one, or none of the lines. Once everyone has voted, each player's score is adjusted [204]. Scoring is done by adding a weighted value of the number of votes on the winning line to the score of each player that voted for that line, and subsequently doing the same for the player or players that created that line. If two or more players happen to enter the same line, they are considered co-creators of that line. This allows writers of a winning line who also voted for it to gain points for both actions. Finally, the total number of votes from a player that were for lines that did not receive a winning number of votes are subtracted off that player's score. This motivates all players to only vote for the one or more lines they think might win, while at the same time motivating them to write the winning line. The winning line is the line with the most votes, or, in the case of a tie, the first line submitted.
  • [0009]
    Once the winning line is determined, it is added to the story for everyone to see [205]. Players' attached graphics or auto-generated imagery or animations associated with this line may also be rendered with the addition of the winning line. If the winning line is a vote for ending the story (typically the line “THE END”), or, if the number of story lines has reached the limit as specified by the story creator, the final score and winning player or list of players in a tie is displayed [206]. Players are given an opportunity to start a new story with the same group. If the story is not complete, the players perform another round of story line submissions [202].
  • [0010]
    All steps in this process are recorded, integrated, and controlled by the game servers [104]. To handle dropped players or unresponsive players at each major decision phase in the process [207], the player group size is adjusted dynamically to allow the process to continue (e.g. in the case of voting or line submission, adjusting the group is equivalent to the unresponsive user passing on that turn). If one player continues to be unresponsive, they are permanently dropped from the story group in order to accelerate story generation. Other actions are possible as described in the ensuing alternate embodiments description.
  • [0011]
    To further enhance the players' experience, statistics for players are also rendered. Enhancements include, but are not limited to, honoring top scorers and players as “storytellers” and making this title visible, allowing players and non-players to vote for their favorite story, and simple tools allowing players to print out, or otherwise frame, stories they personally like. Top voted stories are prominently placed on the game's primary web page.
  • DESCRIPTION OF ALTERNATE EMBODIMENTS
  • [0012]
    In an alternate variation, users can play the game in a pseudo round-robin fashion—that is, each player in turn (rather than simultaneously) submit a line and then other players vote on how much they like that line. By default, the author of the line is not revealed until after the voting. In the case of a voice-only interface, or, alternatively, high speed networked computers, players using the game in this setup have the opportunity to play at high speed, where responses have to be extremely quick and immediate. The server will in one variation cut each player off at a random time. The next player must continue what has been submitted so far with a grammatically perfect line or phrase that compliments the current story. In this case, players, assisted by the server, are also voting on line correctness (the server will flag grammatically incorrect sentences), not just likeability.
  • [0013]
    In another variation, in the case of unresponsive players, or, alternatively, as the fundamental game goal, the game servers will insert a story line in lieu of the player. In the case of handling dropped or unresponsive players when waiting for line submissions, this added line keeps the voting interface consistent for other players. In the variation of always inserting an auto-generated line as a fundamental game goal, players get points by guessing which line is computer generated. The computer generated line can be created by data mining the entire database of user stories, the web, or, alternatively, employing automatic story generation techniques as described in prior art.
  • [0014]
    In all of these variations, this system uniquely creates an environment where the players can simultaneously learn social skills (learning how others think allows one to write more favorable story lines and obtain a higher score), learn story writing techniques (both from how others vote and from other metrics like computer assisted grammar checking when these metrics apply), be creative, and at the same time be entertained.
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Referenced by
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US861364620 Jan 201224 Dec 2013Henk B. RogersSystems and methods for controlling player characters in an interactive multiplayer story
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US20140075337 *9 Sep 201313 Mar 2014Richard Anthony HunterDream Sharing and Visualization Platform
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US20160119391 *31 Dec 201528 Apr 2016Richard Anthony HunterDream sharing, visualization, and realization platform
Classifications
U.S. Classification463/40
International ClassificationA63F9/24
Cooperative ClassificationA63F13/63, A63F13/35, H04L67/38, A63F2300/558, A63F2300/6018, A63F2300/406
European ClassificationH04L29/06C4, A63F13/12