Connor Carson on Immortality's narrative tech and implementing the match cut mechanic

NYU’s Game Center Lecture series just wrapped for the semester with Connor Carson on the tech for Immortality: it was a really good talk, got well down into the details but was mostly presented in a very approachable way. Highly recommend if you’re into procedural narrative tech, practical details of tuning weighted random selection and just generally what goes into making a pretty substantial game with a small team. Or, y’know, if you just liked Immortality. I don’t know how long the video of the stream will be up: looks like they might keep some but not others, so I’d try to watch it in the next month if you’re interested. It was about a 50-minute talk and then about that much again of Q&A.


I didn’t see the talk video on that page, but it is currently on Twitch:

Ack. I must have failed to copy the twitch link, because I pasted the announcement link twice. Thanks!

Can you quickly says what the “match cut mechanic” is? Or what it does? I.e., is this something I should know about?

In the game it is more like “if the player clicked on a thing, jump to the same thing in a different shot.”

Right, this is the core navigation mechanic in Immortality. You’re watching a video clip; you select an object or person; the game brings up a new clip with the same (or a similar) object on screen. Thus you unlock more and more clips as you click.

The lecture goes into the “select a clip with the same object” algorithm, which turns out to have a lot of weighting factors.

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The Script Lock podcast had a discussion with the producer, Natalie Watson, about a month ago, so it was also fun to see this talk with that other perspective still relatively fresh in my mind…