Ficdown: Markdown-inspired interactive fiction syntax

I posted previously about my idea for creating a Markdown-based IF syntax and tools around it here:

Well, I’ve finally got everything lined up into a more-or-less presentable state. You can check it out here:

I’m interested in any feedback around the website and the tools themselves if anyone gives them a try (the command-line “compiler” to convert Ficdown stories into epubs or the Ficdown.js javascript library for presenting Ficdown stories interactively on the web). The most recent work I did on the compiler was to improve its error handling, so it gives line numbers and descriptive messages when it encounters problems in your Ficdown files.

The next thing I want to do is plug a form into the website that can compile Ficdown to epubs in the cloud, but I’m not sure when I’ll have time to get to that. On the “Write” page there is a text field that you can paste a story into and click a button to actually play it if you want an easy way to mess around with it and try stuff out.


Hey this looks really neat, I’ll give it a try.

Did any collaboration ever happen as a result of that previous thread?

None that I was directly involved in outside of the thread itself. I think the other two formats that surfaced in the other discussion were already pretty well established (as well as Ficdown), so there was little incentive to combine efforts. Though if you look now at micax’s wiki where he defines the language used in his story engine, you can see (and he even states) that he borrowed heavily from my Ficdown spec.

Looks lovely. I won’t use it if I have to jump through hoops for Mac, so an online compiler you feed a txt file to compile sounds good.

I managed to bang out an online form that hooks into the compiler now, so you can upload a ficdown file and download an epub.


Very definitely - the spec that I’ve implemented is pretty much Ficdown with a few additional bells and whistles inspired by Squiffy + my own needs. Can see the Ficdown spec has evolved somewhat since then; will have to see if I can make some time to sit down and look at the latest additions (and perhaps bring my implementation more in-line with these).

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Best regards.

I have prepared an online web editor for ficdown. The interface for now is only in Spanish, but the goal is to translate it into English. To run the ficdown.js 0.9.1 voucher game with some slight changes.


We have an interactive fiction course in Spanish, and we use it as a Ficdown tool.