Choice-based IF for people who don't like choice-based IF

I love parser-based IF, but I have always bumped off of choice-based stuff. What are your recommendations of titles to get me into the choice-based genre?

My favorite thing about parser games is exploration and discovery if that helps.

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I consider myself a parser fan and choice not-fan. But I like “An unexpectedly green journey”.

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Perhaps Agnieszka Trzaska’s work?

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My favorite piece of interactive fiction to date (which doesn’t mean much btw.) is by far Trigaea. I would recommend playing on normal or easy difficulty, otherwise you have all random encounters many times and they get boring. I really like the story aspect, and the exploration provides a good pacing so you uncover the story piece by piece.

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This is exactly what I was going to suggest - you can’t go wrong but Bones of Rosalinda might be a good place to start? Abigail Corfman is another author whose stuff you might enjoy. Both make “parser-like” choice games that have navigation, world models, and puzzles, so might be a good gateway into the larger world of choice IF!

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Some good recommendations here:

And here!

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Personal fav (not really exploration, but def a discovery)

Also shameless link (there is :100: some exploration):

And that one made me giggle a lot:

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I keep beating the same drum, but these two are choice games with simulation mechanics behind them.

Seedshiphttps://philome.la/johnayliff/seedship/play/index.html

A Dark Roomhttps://adarkroom.doublespeakgames.com/

Have fun! :slight_smile:

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I’ve played through A Dark Room twice a few years back. It’s great.

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Seconding both Seedship and A Dark Room.

Tooting my own horn, you might also like my game Voyage of the Marigold.

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I really liked both of them, and I didn’t think those would count as interactive fiction. That means my first encounter with interactive fiction was waaay earlier than I thought… And that gives me hope that I can integrate simulation elements into my own games and post about them here without the torches and pitchforks coming lol.

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(gently) You sure think we’re more vicious and gatekeepy of a community than we actually are :sweat_smile:

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Well, I’m always worried when I release something, and moreso when it’s something that comes from my imagination. Programming a library or utility for others to use and release it? Easy! Release a game, afraid that players tear it to shreds in the reviews? Not easy!

Though with Trigaea winning an IFDB award, my games should probably be safe.

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Much rather disembowel it during testing than tear it to shreds in a review. But, in both cases, and as Aster said above, always gently.

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Although I do like the idea of the torches and pitchforks coming out, unless it’s my game, then I’d prefer fairy floss and marshmallows. :joy:

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To be honest, Seedship probably leans more towards IF than A Dark Room does. If you continue to play A Dark Room, it completely goes off the rails and morphs into another game entirely. I don’t want to ruin the surprise though if you haven’t made it that far. Once a game starts getting too close to other established genres, I do think it stops being IF, but that’s just my opinion.

Regarding torches and pitchforks, it can happen when you talk about things in too blunt of a manner… as can happen with any topic with any group of people. Just be respectful. You can even disagree respectfully.

Anyway, make your game. Make it the best it can be. See your vision through. Your vision is the only thing that matters.

I have an idea for a dungeon crawler using three.js where the creatures are actually just large words that appear and move around in the 3D world… is that IF? Who the fuck cares? :wink:

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New rating system! I’d give this game three pitchforks and two torches.

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I think this is an interesting observation.

I think a lot of my enjoyment of gaming is driven by the exploration/curiousity motive. More so, I think, than triumph/fiero.

But I am I think more engaged by the exploration of the situation & character than I am exploring the verb space so to speak. This is not an attempt to denigrate parser games — although I do think there are issues about the challenge of expression. But I also think it is possible for choice-based games to create a sense of curiousity and exploration even while giving away the verbs on offer. I’m certainly going to attempt that myself.

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I will try some titles mentioned above. I don’t like also choice-based games, but I am open to suggestions.

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I liked “A dark room” a lot, but this game is an “Hammurabi” one. It is mostly strategy and how to “build an empire”