Video: Designing Mafia III's system-driven dialogue

At GDC 2017, Hangar 13's Remy Boicherot outlines key principles used for the relationship system with crime lieutenants, persistent characters, radio news and shows that breathe life into Mafia III.

How do you design a game with characters that respond to a player's decisions in their words and deeds, while simultaneously making those responses feel authentic and not robotic? 

At GDC 2017, Hangar 13's Remy Boicherot explained how the studio worked to do just that for its 2016 open-world revenge story Mafia III.

Boicherot outlined key principles used for the relationship system with crime lieutenants, world-persistent characters, radio news and shows; he also took a deep dive into "Sit Downs", Mafia III's semi-interactive cinematics with high-tension procedural dialogue sequences that put the player into tough choice situations.

His talk was both intriguing and practical, with lots of details on the tools and techniques Hangar 13 used during production on Mafia III. Now you can watch it yourself (completely free!) over on the official GDC YouTube channel.

About the GDC Vault

In addition to this presentation, the GDC Vault and its new YouTube channel offers numerous other free videos, audio recordings, and slides from many of the recent Game Developers Conference events, and the service offers even more members-only content for GDC Vault subscribers.

Those who purchased All Access passes to recent events like GDC, GDC Europe, and GDC Next already have full access to GDC Vault, and interested parties can apply for the individual subscription via a GDC Vault subscription page. Group subscriptions are also available: game-related schools and development studios who sign up for GDC Vault Studio Subscriptions can receive access for their entire office or company by contacting staff via the GDC Vault group subscription page. Finally, current subscribers with access issues can contact GDC Vault technical support.

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