1001 Nights

Student Entrant 2024

Royal College of Art
Ada Eden


Language has the power to shape our reality. What if it could also mold the virtual worlds we inhabit? 1001 Nights ia a narrative game inspired by Wittgenstein's assertion: The limits of my language mean the limits of my world.". In this game, Shahrzad, the protagonist, can transform spoken stories from other people into tangible in-game elements. When keywords like 'sword', knife', or `shield' are spoken, they materialize in the game world.

Powered by generative AI, "1001 Nights" is divided into storytelling and battle phases. During storytelling, players control Shahrzad, strategically guiding an AI King to narrate tales with keywords, which in turn generate unique weapons based on the story. As these weapons are collected, the world in the story begins to invade the game's reality, a transformation visualized using large language model (LLM) GPT-4 and the text-to-image model Stable Diffusion. Once four weapons are collected, players transition to the battle phase, where they use their collected arsenal to confront the King, with effect from the story they tell. The end goal is to rewrite Shahrzad's fate, diverging from the traditional folklore.

This game blurs the lines between reality and fiction. Shahrzad seeks to reshape her destiny, challenging patriarchal norms. Players, in tandem with AI, redefine the game's boundaries, crafting stories that surpass authorial constraints. Here, language doesn't just describe the world; it creates it, a phenomenon amplified by generative AI.

Note: When collecting the weapon, it will float around 20 - 30s --- this is when the world is generating through stable diffusion, so it took a while.
This game supports both Chinese and English.