Parameter-heavy games - story-files and post mortems

I’m getting into writing hypertext-IF, and want to write games with quite a lot of parameters, games where the text shown on screen is very much dependent upon earlier choices, but not in the sense of “go north and go get to a cave, go south and you get to a lake”, but basically where most of the text is the same, only a bit different. The choices would be divided along axises such as fatalistic/non-fatalistic or pessimistic/optimistic, and the text would continually be changed with the focus on certain aspects of the text (i.e clicking on certain words), for example if the player clicks on “I believe” instead of “not sure” in the text “I believe in god, I’m just not sure that it’s my belief”, then the next screen would show a somewhat more skeptic version of whatever the text is about.

The process of design for this kind of project is kind of hard to wrap my head around though, the thinking and such: should I write all of the story first, decide if some parameters perhaps aren’t parameters but so central to the character that they cannot be changed (pessimism for example, or belief in God), can I somehow use procedural design to make the process easier, and so on.

I would like some inspiration, some examples of similar games out there. And not only games as such, but their source codes, story files (I’m thinking of using twine) or postmortems, so that I can understand the underpinnings of the games and how they work, from a designer perspective.

Any other resources which might be of help are appreciated. For example, are there any other communities other there which might be suitable for what I’m after, and support me in my IF-writing/design musings?

I think that The Play, by Deirdre Kiai, is probably the best example of what you want.

Yes indeed, both I and Aaron Reed when I mailed hir thought of that game! :smiley: Great minds think alike. :wink:

Games journalist, curator, dangerous slime witch, our own dear Porpentine has source code for Twine games on her website. You can also find Twine resources.

Awesome. :slight_smile: