New today from German software company Nevigo GmbH is game development tool articy:draft, a professional story and game design application tailored to the specific demands of interactive nonlinear storytelling.

This is a fascinating development that can be downloaded at www.nevigo.com/articydraft, where a 30 day trial is available.

The approach is to split a game into fragments which can then be interconnected to form a story network. Every branch represents a plotline that depends upon the players’ actions and decisions. The fragments within a branch can contain an inner structure that can be broken down into further fragments. Thanks to this nesting, non-linear plots, mission trees, dialogues, tech trees and other elements can easily be planned from the rough outline to the smallest detail.

Nevigo development director Stefan Nyul is naturally enthusiastic about the tool.

“Finally we can offer a comfortable and efficient solution to everyone who is working or involved in game and story design and who had to get by without a professional tool.”

Images, documents, videos, and other assets can also be attached directly to the fragments allowing for easy access to all the elements of each plotline, with characters, objects, items, and locations available directly within articy:draft where they can be connected as appropriate.

“We wanted to develop a professional game design tool that perfectly meets the demands of the game industry and we’ve successfully achieved it. Thanks to the invaluable feedback from our beta partners, articy:draft is a very sophisticated tool.” says Nevigo CEO Kai Rosenkranz. “This year we’re going to add localization features, an interactive presentation mode and further export functions to facilitate an even broader range of game and story development projects.”

Additionally, the tool has been developed with the modern needs of game design and collaboration in mind. Nyul:

“Users can log on to their servers and work together with other team members, greatly benefiting from the integrated asset management and workflow functionalities.”

We await the first titles developed with this great new utility with fevered anticipation!