Wanted to share the word about the ongoing voting in the second tier of the Russian Interactive Fiction awards called Золотой Хомяк 2010 (“Golden Hamster 2010” — hamster is a mascot of the good old first Russian IF games).
This year we had at least 100 games, and while in the English-speaking community Inform is definitely leading as a platform, we in Russian-speaking community have a diversity of platforms, and most of them are menu-based (not to be confused with CYAO).
Here’s some stats — the number of works — grouped by platform:
QSP – 43, URQ - 31, INSTEAD - 14, RInform - 3, Милена – 3, Tweebox - 2, RTADS - 1, TGE - 1, custom engine - 2.
You can also check out the last year’s awards where it debuted: ynd.stormway.ru/zh2009/
Last year we had a scheme similar to XYZZY awards, but since there was a lot of “fan” votes where people would vote for a single game and only that game, because it was made in their community, we have devised the scheme for this year. This time we have a jury of 6 people, well-known in the communities and who play most of the games released. And we have a “Public choice” award for the best game as voted by the public.
“Public choice” is now decided, and the 2nd tier is happening right now.
And I hope you get the reference in the hamster pic on this year’s awards page
Well, in 2009 we had 50 games at most. This year has seen the new “SpeedIF” (titled “Вжж!”, which can be translated as “Fwoosh!”) competition, that happened twice (3rd time was just recently, in 2011) — people had to write a game with a given set of topics in roughly 24 hours. This has amounted to about 15 games.
Then there was a fan-fiction “festival” with the message posted on a huge number of forums and different communities. This resulted in about 10 more games and new authors.
I don’t know about other languages, but from the list of games in the XYZZY list there were about 300 games in 2010, and the list includes games in different languages, but most are in English.
QSP is a “menu-based” system with a simple language and is simple for beginners, maybe that’s why it is most popular.
If you’re on Windows, you can try qsp.su/attachments/players_pack_2010_06_17.exe to see some sample games in action.
More cross-platform binaries here: qsp.su/index.php?option=com_cont … icle&id=64
There’s a way to publish a QSP game in Flash so it can run in modern browsers.
Personally, I’d rather recommend INSTEAD: instead.syscall.ru/
It has intuitive language akin to Inform 6 (actually Lua is used), it has English documentation and good media capabilities (cross-platfrom too).
Some screenshots: instead.syscall.ru/screenshots/
I never knew there was so much Russian interactive fiction!
Unfortunately it’s all lost on me: “Ya lyublyu tebya” and “Do svedanya” pretty much exhausts my knowledge of Russian.
Still, I find it very refreshing to be reminded that the world (and even the Internet) actually is bigger than the one I’m usually aware of.
(I wonder what other non-English and non-Western European interactive fiction communities may be thriving out there – Chinese, Japanese, Indian, Turkish …?)
I also had no idea there were so many tools for writing IF in use that I never heard of.
I’d love to hear more from Russia. For, instance are there any noteworthy differences in what kinds of games are preferred or produced or especially appreciated etc. in the Russian IF community as compared to the English speaking one?
I regularly check the Russian sites with Google translate (using Chrome is not too clunky) for IF URLs. I haven’t found other communities besides the Spanish, German, Italian, and French (I do look though!), though there has been some work done in other languages, I wouldn’t say there are communities per se. I have a feeling that the further afield from the English-centric IF world you go, the more you find IF as visual novels and graphical games, though I’m not sure why that is really.
Because of the complexity of Russian language (take 6 cases for nouns and adjectives for example) there was no good parser early, and this probably led to the popularity of menu/CYAO-style IF here. I wonder if it’s the same in the other countries, like Japan for example?