1. Adam Bolander

    Adam Bolander Senior Member

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    Online Interactive Novel?

    Discussion in 'Novels' started by Adam Bolander, Feb 25, 2020.

    I love video games, and have always wanted to make my own. Unfortunately, I have absolutely no programming or artistic talent. Writing is about the only thing I can do halfway decently. But does anyone remember those old text based games? The ones that had no graphics, just words on a screen that described a scene around you and to do anything you either had to pick from a set of choices or type in your action like "Look through window" or "Open door"?

    Well, I found a program called Twine that lets you make those. Imagine that I wrote a huge epic story, and how the story played out and how different characters interacted with the main character depended on what you choose to make them say and do. Essentially a choose your own adventure novel, but longer and with more branching choices.

    Do you think there's any chance something like that could be successful?
     
  2. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    I think that's a lot of work for a reader. I remember the choose your own adventure books from when I was a kid, but I'm not sure they're really around anymore. And even if you were to do it in game form, you're up against all those other games to choose from that do have graphics and are already interactive. In book form I really don't think this works. Readers don't want to make up the story. They want to read a good story. It just seems like this complicates things, and I'm not really sure how much of an audience there would be for either form.
     
  3. Adam Bolander

    Adam Bolander Senior Member

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    Have you ever heard of Mass Effect? They're a trilogy of games where the story can change drastically based on the choices the player makes while playing. People have been known to play through all three games multiple times just to see how things play out differently if they do X instead of Y. So there's definitely a market for that kind of branching story. I'm just not sure if it'll translate well to reading instead of playing.

    And for the record, I'd do my best to make everything feel like a legitimate story no matter what the "player" chooses. Theres no definite right or wrong way to "play" the book, just various routes the player can take to see how things play out differently. Making one choice might end the story sooner than another, but I would try to write it so that the reader doesn't feel like they've lost the game or something.
     
  4. SethLoki

    SethLoki Retired Autodidact Contributor

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  5. Lili.A.Pemberton

    Lili.A.Pemberton Active Member

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    Oooh, I've used twine before, but never actually made anything decent with it. Do I think an online interactive novel would be successful? Well, I think anything can be successful if it's an interesting enough concept and enough time is put in it. It also depends on your definition of 'successful'. Chances are, as good as the novel might be, without any sort of graphics/gaming aspect it will be limited in audience scope so I guess I'm saying don't set your hopes to high.

    In a similar vein, I remember I used to play the choiceofgames which is a little like what you're describing. I think some of the stories have stats but besides that it's mostly an online interactive novel. I think you have to pay to play the full game though.
     
    SethLoki likes this.
  6. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    No need to get diffusive. You asked about this. Bottom line is that it will be a hard sell. But good luck anyway. It's clear that I didn't offer the response you were looking for. Publishing is hard. Your idea is going to make it harder.
     
  7. Adam Bolander

    Adam Bolander Senior Member

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    ????
    Not sure what I said to offend you, but clearly YOU'RE the one who didn't get the response you wanted.
     
  8. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    Hey, Man. No hard feelings either way, I hope. Maybe I read too much into it. To me, "for the record" seem to be fighting words most of the time. Sorry if that's just me. I thought you were being defensive and in turn dismissive of my take on the situation. But really, I'm not looking to fight with anyone around here. Best of luck with whatever you decide to do.
     
  9. Naomasa298

    Naomasa298 HP: 10/190 Status: Confused Contributor

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    I wrote a number of these back in the day, although none ever made it to publication. I even wrote two systems that allowed you to create your own without any programming.

    Interactive fiction (that's "adventure games" to most people) have not aged well.
     

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