by Adam Lake

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Chapter 3.9. A Framework for Emotional Digital Actors

Phil Carlisle

In this gem, we will describe a framework that may be used to endow game characters with some level of emotional behavior. Using a simple behavior tree implementation augmented with supporting appraisal and blackboard implementations, we will demonstrate that emotions can be easily implemented and can enhance the behavior and expression of game characters. We use the term “digital actor” because although the emotional system we present is based on sound academic research in psychology and cognitive science, the intention is to produce the “illusion” of emotion, rather than specifically trying to model emotion itself. However, the reader is advised to read [

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