Semiotics of Interactive Narrative: Animation, Novels, Video Games

Course Information
TitleΣημειωτική της διαδραστικής αφήγησης: κινούμενες εικόνες, μυθιστορήματα, βιντεοπαιχνίδια / Semiotics of Interactive Narrative: Animation, Novels, Video Games
Interdepartmental ProgrammeSemiotics, Culture and Communication
Collaborating SchoolsFrench Language and Literature
Italian Language and Literature
Journalism and Mass Communications
Cycle / Level2nd / Postgraduate
Teaching PeriodWinter/Spring
Course ID600014993

Programme of Study: Semiotics, Culture and Communication

Registered students: 22
OrientationAttendance TypeSemesterYearECTS
KORMOSElective CoursesWinter/Spring-7.5

Class Information
Academic Year2021 – 2022
Class PeriodWinter
Instructors from Other Categories
Weekly Hours3
Class ID
Course Type 2011-2015
Knowledge Deepening / Consolidation
Mode of Delivery
  • Distance learning
Language of Instruction
  • Greek (Instruction, Examination)
Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of the course, students will: - Learn the theoretical concepts, genres and characteristics of interactive narratives - Understand their structure and function - Apply semiotic analysis on interactive narratives - Familiarize themselves with the articulation of the semiotic analysis with the new media and technologies used (c) Comprehend the various roles of the user / reader, depending on the type and degree of interaction f) Connect theory with practice, both by analyzing interactive texts and by producing their own simple interactive narratives during the lessons.
General Competences
  • Apply knowledge in practice
  • Retrieve, analyse and synthesise data and information, with the use of necessary technologies
  • Adapt to new situations
  • Make decisions
  • Work autonomously
  • Work in teams
  • Work in an international context
  • Generate new research ideas
  • Design and manage projects
  • Appreciate diversity and multiculturality
  • Demonstrate social, professional and ethical commitment and sensitivity to gender issues
  • Be critical and self-critical
  • Advance free, creative and causative thinking
Course Content (Syllabus)
Nowadays, new forms of narrative have emerged, where the user actively influences the story development and often affects their course. With the support of technology, these narratives have been applied to almost all kinds of cultural production: from literature and art to advertisements, video games and, very recently, television. In this course, we focus primarily on the semiotic and narrative analysis of interactive novels, animations and video games, in order to address narratives in as many semiotic systems as possible (natural language, visual, sound, filmic etc.) while at the same time we will look at various other applications such as in advertising, in educational applications, in art, in videos for social purposes and more.
semiotics, interactive novels, animations, video games
Educational Material Types
  • Notes
  • Slide presentations
  • Video lectures
  • Multimedia
Use of Information and Communication Technologies
Use of ICT
  • Use of ICT in Course Teaching
  • Use of ICT in Communication with Students
In the courseit will be used the elearning platform and audiovisual material.
Course Organization
Laboratory Work8
Reading Assigment26
Written assigments78
Student Assessment
As part of the requirements of the course, students will be expected to produce an original analysis of an interactive narrative of their choice, from any semiotic system they prefer.
Student Assessment methods
  • Written Assignment (Formative, Summative)
  • Performance / Staging (Formative, Summative)
  • Labortatory Assignment (Formative, Summative)
Additional bibliography for study
Aarseth, E. (2012). "A narrative theory of games". ACM Digital library. Online Aarseth, E. (1997). Cybertext: Perspectives on Ergodic Literature. Baltimore and London: Johns Hopkins UP. Carr, D. Buckingham D., Burn A., and G. Schott. (2006). Computer games: Text, narrative and play. Cambridge, MA: Polity Press. Eco U. (2009). "On the ontology of fictional characters. A semiotic approach". Sign Systems Studies 37 (1): 82-97. Eco, U. (1985). "Articulations of the Cinematic Code". In Bill Nichols (ed.), Movies and Methods: An Anthology. Berkeley: University of California Press, 590-607. Eco, U. (1976). A Theory of Semiotics. Bloomington: Indiana University Press. Frasca, G. (2008 [1999]). "Ludology meets narratology: Similitude and differences between (video)games and narrative". Online Ferri, G. (2007). Narrating machines and interactive matrices, a semiotic common ground for game studies. In Proceedings of DiGRA 2007. Online Greimas, A.-J. (1983 [1966]). Structural Semantics: An Attempt at a Method. Lincoln and London: University of Nebraska Press. Greimas, A.-J. (1987 [1970]). On Meaning: Selected Writings in Semiotic Theory. Minneapolis: University of Minessota Press. Κοκκώνης, Μ., Πασχαλίδης Γ. & Φ. Μπαντιμαρούδης (επιμ). (2010). Ψηφιακά μέσα. Ο πολιτισμός του ήχου και του θεάματος. Αθήνα: Κριτική. Λαγόπουλος, Α-Φ. & Κ. Boklund-Λαγοπούλου. (2016). Θεωρία Σημειωτικής: Η παράδοση του Ferdinand de Saussure. Αθήνα: Πατάκη. Montfort, N. (2003). Twisty Little Passages: An Approach to Interactive Fiction. Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press. Murray, J.-H. (2017). Hamlet on the Holodeck: The Future of Narrative in Cyberspace. New York: The MIT Press. Perron, B. & M. J. P. Wolf. (eds.). (2009). The video game theory reader 2. London: Routledge. Propp, V. (1968 [1928]). Morphology of the Folk Tale. Austin. University of Texas Press. Ryan, M.-L. (2008). Interactive Narrative, Plot Types and Interpersonal Relations. Online Smed, J., Suovuo Tomi ‘bgt’, Trygg N. & P. Skult (2019). Lecture Notes on Interactive Storytelling. Finland: Turku Center for Computer Science. Online Wolf, M.-J.-P. (2001). The Medium of the Video Game. Austin, TX: University of Texas Press.
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