Choicescript - What the Hell?

I just have to get this out of my system. A trollish way is as good as any other. So here goes…

I went on and tried some IntroComp Choicescript “games”. I was clicking the initial question dialogs away, eagerly awaiting to get to the actual game. After about a minute, I realized that this is the game!. Seriously, wtf? How on earth did this get classified as “Interactive Fiction” and allowed into IntroComp?

The author decides what to call it.

OK. Self-proclaimed Interactive Fiction it is then.

I didn’t author any games for IntroComp, but I agree with the authors that these games are interactive fiction. :slight_smile:

If you’re wondering where the action is, some ChoiceScript games start with a fairly leisurely character creation and some (like Choice of Zombies) put you into the action quicker.

If you’re saying “but it’s just multiple choices,” well, yeah.

If you’re asking why games like this should count as IF:

technically, the only truly interactive thing i know of is a pacemaker. but, using the definition of interactive that most IFers use, i would, grudgingly, have to consider CYOA/ multiple choice as IF because its a) fiction and b) interactive.

Well, so is reading the New York Times online. It’s fiction and it’s interactive (you can click around, scroll, etc.) But you don’t see it entered into IF competitions.

hmmm. u got me with your legal mumbo-jumbo. BUT, you dont actually interact with the CREATION of the news. just the reading of it. so i would have to disagree. in IF and CYOA, you help shape and run the narrative.

kudos on calling the news “fiction”, tho. lol :laughing:

I think that they qualify as IF just fine. It’s just that personally I would rather play a good parser game. I find when loading one of these Choicescript games that I’m usually just kind of breezing through the choices while just “skimming” instead of actually “reading”, unless I see some text that really catches my eye. In other words, I guess I have a hard time putting a lot of thought into Choicescript games, due to the medium. A major issue too is if the author has bothered to right distinctively different consquences for the questions.

Well, it’s CYOA, isn’t it? CYOA has been - grugingly, I sometimes think - classified as a form of IF. It’s simply that the way you interact with the game is by choosing from a set of fixed options instead of giving you a freeform parser.

And the only one I’ve played so far is Exile, and I have to say it was some of the finest use of CYOA I’ve seen (I also enjoyed the Undum Stiffy Makane game) in giving useful, meaningful choices to the player and going on believably.

It is hard to deny that any interactive fiction story should be allowed to be called “interactive fiction”, whatever genre it is. But the standard name for parser based literature is also “interactive fiction” - it’s a subset of the first use of the term. As long as everyone recognises the legitimacy of both we shouldn’t have any issues, they’re not hard to distinguish.

This is true. But it is also hard to deny that practically every commercial videogame on the front shelf at Gamestop is interactive and has a story. So this use of the term is hard to distinguish from “videogame”.

I add a third use, actually, in my IF theory articles. I think that text-parser adventure games and first-person adventure games have a specific form of interactivity which – well, I won’t say that CYOA and third-person adventure games lack, but they are not tuned for it and those audiences do not necessarily perceive it as a strength.

(To forestall the next question: yes, someone could come along with a first-person shooter and enter into next year’s IFComp as “interactive fiction.” And then we’d have to deal with that hypothetical situation.)

Hm, I just read the article quickly, but why not third-person adventure games?

Someone DID enter a graphical adventure into a comp, as I recall. It’s in IFDB. Point and click. And since it is, in a sense, interactive fiction, it was allowed and it’s still there.

If you enjoyed any of the ChoiceScript games submitted to IntroComp, I’d invite you to try some of the other finished games in ChoiceScript, available at (Disclaimer: I’m a member of the Choice of Games partnership.)

Thanks, but I’ve checked it out before and I don’t like playing IF unless it’s offline. I like knowing it’s there and it’ll always be there on my hard drive even if the original online page disappears.

Now, if you were to provide a way to download those games and play them offline like I played exile, I’d bookmark that site like I do IFDB and ADRIFT and whatnot and check every day for new games.

I’ve always been rather influenced by Emily Short’s classic article “What is Interactive Fiction” (or perhaps by the not so reliable memory I got of it, as It’s been eons since I last read it) in the sense that It’s interface what makes parser based IF qualify as IF “as we know it”. Other than that, I like to side with the open minded bunch, so I see nothing wrong with CYOA works entering IF comps.

In fact, I openly disliked CYOA games untill recently. Most of my CYOA experience before had been teenage fantasy books in which I wasn’t so much interested. This recent trend of choice based games has given us a wider scenario with more ambituous potential to be achieved, so, as far as I’m concerned, It’s a wellcome trend! :sunglasses:

An offline version of our games is certainly on our list; in the meantime, you might enjoy the iPhone, Android or Kindle versions, all of which are downloadable.

Certainly, were I to acquire any of those gadgets first. :unamused: All I can play on the go are J2ME apps, like ZaxMidlet.