CYOA/Interactive Fiction Game – Day 1 Done

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April 17th, 2016 12:46 am

I decided to try and build my game in a custom HTML based Choose Your Own Adventure style engine.  There is some stat tracking, but for the most part it’s just clicking on links to advance the story.  Everything’s on one page, so your experience is captured at the end of the game.

It’s been a rough day, mainly because I’m having trouble structuring the story.  When I read the theme, I realized I could use it as a metaphor for personal change and actually turn it into a non-fiction game.  I was recently reading something on Emily Short’s blog about non fiction interactive fiction, so I’m excited to add my take on the genre.

I’ve been struggling with the structure and level of mechanics. The game focuses on my experience with a somewhat traumatic experience, and the depression that followed.  I was originally going to embed a fairly in depth clicker/incremental game, and had a prototype running.  I decided against that, as I found I couldn’t make it feel like a minigame.  Instead, I’ve switched to a more traditional structure, with choices branching then knotting.  I’m tracking a few integer variables that allow me to have some slightly more complex results, but for the most part, it’s a very linear experience.  I’m somewhat disappointed I couldn’t find a way to make the outcomes more dynamic, but it’s difficult to even get branching into a non-fiction IF piece.

As for length, it’s currently about 1,200 words per play through.  It doesn’t really reward additional play through at the moment.

Tomorrow, I’ll probably get the word count to around 2,500 and have a *slightly* more rewarding experience for people looking to replay the game.

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