An adventure game is a type of video game in which the player takes on the role of a protagonist in an interactive story that is driven by exploration and/or puzzle solving. Because of the genre’s emphasis on story, it can draw heavily from other narrative-based media, such as literature and film, and it can encompass a wide range of literary genres. Because the emphasis on story and character makes multiplayer design difficult, many adventure games (text and graphic) are designed for a single player.

The genre’s essential elements include storytelling, exploration, and puzzle-solving. Marek Bronstring, former Sega head of content, has described adventure games as puzzles embedded in a narrative framework. Also, such games may include narrative content that a player unlocks piece by piece over time. While the puzzles that players encounter throughout the story may be arbitrary. Those that do not pull the player out of the narrative are considered examples of good design.