Looking for games with some fairly specific features

Hi, I wanted to tap into the collective knowledge and playing experience of the community here to see if there are any games with these certain features:

  • a player’s character playing an IF in the game
  • other interestingly implemented story within a story approaches (where you can perform actions within the sub-story)
  • actions (other than wait/z) used for traveling through time (i.e. go forward, go backward)
  • a zoom in and zoom out element to the movement. (e.g., travel between planets, travel between cities on a planet,
  • travel inside a building in a city, travel inside a room, even microscopic travel)
  • a player playing multiple characters with ability to switch between them and see different perspectives or offer different actions
  • quickly changing settings or objects where repeated examination reveals such changes
  • unreliable sensation, mistrust of self, player character with schizophrenia or multiple personality disorder, etc. (especially gradual onset of these)
  • significant development of PC resulting in learned (or lost) actions (not based on found objects). (e.g., as an infant you cannot yet open door, as you grow older you can open door)
  • taking place over an entire life time or even longer periods of time
  • possession and control of an object or animal, with new set of verbs to then use.
  • prompts that ask you to input information (e.g., your name) that is then later used in the story text.
  • use of non-standard letters, alphabets, and maybe cryptography puzzles dealing with them
  • good use of characters for images or maps (à la ASCII art) that pertain to the story or puzzles somehow.

The more any of these are central to a story the better.
Offer suggestions or alternatively offer ways to find suggestions for these. Thanks.

Check out Endless, Nameless.


If you can find a copy, one of my favorite works of IF is Suspended. It has multiple player characters*, a changing setting, unreliable narration** and to some extent PC development*** as central mechanics. It’s also expected that the player will use a map, although that was provided as a “feelie” rather than being shown within the game. It’s not (legally) available for free download, but you can play it through Floyd on the IF MUD.

  • Technically the player is giving commands to an AFGNCAAP-style player character giving commands to five robotic characters through a computer, but practically the five robots are the PCs being controlled directly by the player.
    ** Each of the robots has limited sensory capabilities, so you need multiple perspectives to get all the information a human would have about an object, and one tends to obfuscate his information with poetic gibberish.
    *** Two of the robots start out without their full capabilities and gain them after being repaired, three things in the game can damage the robots and decrease their capabilities or temporarily incapacitate them.

I’m not quite sure what you mean with your second bullet point, but there are several games with time-manipulation mechanics. Out of these, the one I’d most recommend is All Things Devours (sic).

Homecoming has a macro zoom between travelling between planets and travelling between stars, though nothing larger/smaller.

One Eye Open includes multiple characters (though not free-switch) and at least one instance of changes under repeated examination.

Bolivia By Night has you input your name and uses it in the story text later.

Rover’s Day Out does this extensively.
Splashdown has a sequence also where you control a robot.

•a player playing multiple characters with ability to switch between them and see different perspectives or offer different actions
Earth and Sky 2: Another Earth, Another Sky (or others in the series?)

Operation Extraction has back-and-forth temporal movement and multiple PCs.

Nine Tenths of the Law has you possessing things and learning new verbs because of them. So does Changes. And Coloratura… aw just play Coloratura.

So far great recommendations! I’m working through Endless, Nameless and Coloratura.

Both are really interesting and close to what I was looking for.

Do you need to play the trilogy through, or do they stand alone fairly well?

Bureaucracy has you fill out a form at the beginning and uses information from it throughout the game.

The PK Girl prompts for a name at the beginning and uses that.

Actually working on that now.

“All Things Devours”. Definitely a game worth playing.

“Dual Transform” sort of works for this. “Galatea” as well.

“Shrapnel”, and “Baron En”, to some extent.

“Child’s Play” makes you play a baby, if that helps. No new verb set, from what I remember.

“Ad Verbum” “The Gostak”

Wow. That last post totally broke the alternative theme.

intfiction.org • View topic - Looking for games with some fairly specific features.png

Yeah, I have no idea how that happened. Sorry.

The game I am developing features:

a zoom in and zoom out element to the movement. (e.g., travel between planets, travel between cities on a planet,

basically its a gamebook adventure inspired by starship traveller by Steve Jackson. It is still being beta-tested but it is fully playable (would be happy for more feedback actually)

textadventures.co.uk/games/view/ … the-nebula