It’s been a while since I’ve written about choice in games, so it’s time to fix that. Today I’ll write about Twine, why it’s a good, easy (well, easier than creating art/animations/voices, etc) way to introduce multiple choices and story-lines into your games and could possibly be a good way to prototype your choices in games.
But first, what is Twine? Remember choose your own adventure books? If so, great! If not, I’m old. Anyway, Twine basically allows you to write a choose your own adventure book (like the Give Yourself Goosebumps series) and put it on a website.
Here’s the best part: It’s super easy to get started, and super easy to put choices in. You basically just create html links, and write a story. There’s an excellent tutorial by Auntie Pixelante here.
So how does this relate to choice? Now that all you have to do to make choices in your story is by making more story, then the only thing stopping you from putting choices in is your own imagination! You won’t have to worry about players missing out on a character in the game, and missing all the sound effects, art, and animations developed for that character, because the character will come to life through your words, and your player’s imaginations.
There have already been some very powerful games made in Twine, and here are a few examples:
Workers In Progress: Topical! A game where you try to turn around the economic collapse of Greece by acting as the collective consciousness of the Greek working class. Interesting if you are into economics, or want to learn about the Greek political system.
Depression Quest: While fairly heavy handed on what it prescribes to fix Depression, playing this game is interesting, mostly because of the way choices are taken away from you. The underlying message is that someone without depression (or in a better state of mind) would be able to make those choices. Interesting to play from a design perspective, and it’s good to get an idea of what depression is like for some people.
Horse Master: Gosh, just looking at the beginning, you’d think it was a silly, funny game, but this gets crazy dark.Not going to spoil it, but it’s totally not what it seems. Be careful which horse you choose.
The best part about all these games is that they are quick enough to replay to see what other choices do in your story. Maybe that’s a good case for keeping a story shorter if there are many choices in the story?
I think that’s enough rambling on for now, hope you enjoyed reading this, and let me know your thoughts in the comments below!
The Prosecutor. She is very vain, and as her name shows, she loves herself. She doesn’t trust anyone, but she believes in the justice system, so evidence will make her more interested in a case. Her favorite color is purple, and isn’t seen too far away from a mirror.
So if you’ve been following the voting for the free game I was making you would know that I’m currently working on a simple 2D game called “BodyHuggers”, where you and a friend both control aliens that you want to get to meet each other and hug another. I’m glad to say that I’ve had enough time to have a very simple prototype of the game up and running:
As you can see, The art is still very basic, but I’ve got the basic idea of a blank level that reveals itself as players move working, and doors are working, so the basic idea is there. Now to make a “hug celebration” screen and a title screen. Aiming to make those as cute as possible. Not sure this will be ready by the end of this month, but hopefully some time during next month.
I can’t tell you how excited I am to be exhibiting at this event! I’m looking forward to meeting fellow indie developers around New England, and seeing what people think about the games I have available for them. We’ll have After The Crash available to try out and play test, and there might be some surprises in store for anyone who wants to try Regeria Hope…. But I can’t announce anything about that now. There’s still too much work to do.
To tell you the truth, After the Crash probably wouldn’t be around if it wasn’t for the Boston FIG. Last year when my wife and I went, we had a look around the Tabletop Showcase, and we were very impressed with what we saw. After we saw what other people were doing, we thought, why not try making our own games, and one year later, After the Crash was born. We narrowly missed making it into the Tabletop Showcase this year, but I’m glad that my first board game was even close to matching the other games that made it.
Hi there! It’s been a month, and we just want to say:
Thanks for reading!
Here at Golden Game Barn, we really want to start a dialog with readers to see what they want to see in a game, and what sort of topics they would like to see in the future? So we are throwing it out there: What posts have you liked so far? Any of the games we are making so far look interesting to you? Anything you want to know about? If you could spare a few moments today to write any feedback, that would be very much appreciated.
To sweeten the deal, we’ll even let you choose which free game we should make first on this site, out of the following:
Bodyhuggers: In this 2D platforming video game, you and a friend both play as blind aliens in love, and try and guide them to each other to hug. Should be fun for couples and families!
Your Grace, My Topiary is Better Than Yours: Free print and play card game, very similar to poker, but more accessible, and you get more points if you pretend to be from the 1800’s. Players will all be shown several pieces of furniture, and they will be able to play their descriptions of furniture in order to have the highest score at the end of the round. The backs of cards will be colored, so players could guess at which cards their opponents have for betting.
Lockdown: Free print and play board game, where you control a country, and some aliens. The player with the most tightly enforced police state wins! This is be very satirical, so expect cards about the NSA and TSA. You have to make sure that your citizens don’t completely panic, so you have to slowly bring the police state rules in.
So what idea from the three above sounds the best to you? Vote below, and we’ll make it, and make blog posts about the construction and design of the game, so you can follow along! Please share this with friends and get them to vote as well! Be quick! Voting ends on the 15th of August!
Thanks for taking the time to read this, and we hope to hear from you in the comments below! Have a great day!