Well the short answer for Visual Purple simulations, is YES story really does drive a simulation! But to cover that enthusiastic “YES” a bit further let’s go down the storyline. Typically e-Learning solutions present an overload of information to the learner; which although some is absorbed, not a real high percentage is retained. When putting the “Learn by Doing” mantra on the table, then when a learner is engaged in a story-rich simulation of course more lessons, concepts and information will be retained. The learner basically chooses the paths of the storyline by making decisions throughout the course of the simulation and learns from those decisions in an evolving story context that he/she controls. And without a doubt, whenever one is empowered to make decisions, they buy in to the experience and enjoy a high level of emotional and intellectual engagement.
On one of his blog posts, Justin Gibbs, goes further in–depth on interactive story and its power over the player.
The most important thing is story-telling. It’s as singular and old-fashioned as that. –David Soul