Quotes. (Any?)

For my next game, I am planning on having a bunch of quotes which are displayed on certain actions or events occurring.

But, I am stumped.

The game is, looking at it right now, literally Trinity blended with Jigsaw and some Curses feel, but not as good as any of those (I like it, some may, dunno though about the rest).

It revolves around running throughout time using a stopwatch, within the same house. The house which finds itself as

throughout time, in chronological order:
  • 1943: a cult hideout/town hall;
  • 2000s: a casino and dodgy science lab;
  • 2012 (start of game): your house;
  • 2013: a massive tower; and
  • 2023: a crazy underground complex.

In addition to that, themes and things that appear often include

  • a drunkard God,
  • the Fleece of Life,
  • a highly complex control room,
  • life that never changes and never breaks routine,
  • the Oracle (who turns out to be a paid actor),
  • fairies, rat-ants and unicorns,
  • Greek and Egyptian gods (in particular Hephaestus, Osiris and Anubis),
  • childhood,
  • (Importantly) big corporations harming and taking control of the public (and animal welfare),
  • lots of other crazy stuff…

The most prevalent theme in here is nuclear war, and the aftermath of such an event. It is also a dark comedy, which may be less funny than I intended it to be.

To wrap it up:
I would like to know if you have quotes (from people, poems, books, songs or just from you/your games) that could relate to any of the above.
(Because I don’t want to get in any trouble, keep it long ago enough that copyright cannot be put on anyone for using it.)

Thank you for even reading through all of this! I am extremely grateful!


That might be difficult, as the vast bulk of quotes regarding nuclear war were made after 1945.

With that said, this sounds like a cool game and I’ll put some thought into some sharp quotes.

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It doesn’t just have to be about that, but all of the other topics are also fine. (You can also use verbal quotes, I don’t think those are copyrighted, right?)

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Short quotes used as epigraphs are almost certainly going to fall under the fair use exception to copyright, so I really wouldn’t worry about that.

More on topic, given the inspirations maybe something from REM’s The End of the World as We Know It would be apt?

For the Oracle plot point, some Wizard of Oz quotes could work.


Yeah, I was about to say, in my experience with book publishing, epigraphs aren’t usually permissioned (i.e., they’re not something for which you have to contact the original author and publisher and draw up a contract with them in order to use, you can just use them). The only exception is song lyrics, because the music industry is weirdly aggressive about quoting even one or two lines, but they’re unlikely to pick on noncommercial works.


William Butler Yeats will be your best friend here. In addition, he wrote killer poems about the end of the world as we know it, war, gods, and death. There are way too many relevant poems to list them, so just buy a copy of Yeats’s complete poems and enjoy.

Also, your general outline has me thinking of The Waste Land by Eliot (a poem set in the aftermath of war):

I think we are in rats’ alley
where the dead men lost their bones.


Oh yeah, great catch – also really leans into the Graham Nelson-ness of the inspirations.


Just in case you’re not familiar with 'em, there are dictionaries of quotations organized for look-up by topic. Whatever library or libraries you have access to might make one available online (and certainly a library would have some physical volumes).


If you can get your game to run in z-machine, I’d go for it, because z-machine quotes look beautiful and glorious, while glulx quotes are easily overlooked and display somewhat poorly.


Once Glk Kit gets here, we’ll be able to do a creditable centered text box in glulx with Inform 7 10… we just don’t know yet when that’ll be. (You just won’t be able to superimpose it over existing text, that’s the fundamental limitation.)


It should be pointed out that with the current dominance of Glk Z-Machine interpreters, they can’t superimpose quote boxes over the top either.


Hmm, I get to avoid that waiting and anti-beauty. I’m going straight for ZIL, (Inform will be for a Collab project I will try and set up later).

To all trying box quotes in Glulx in the next week: I wish you luck!

(That was random.)


I second this. I’ve got a large book of quotes at home that I used to use before the Internet days. Very handy. Failing this, Google search or maybe even ChatGPT (or similar). If using ChatGPT, make sure you check the quotes against accurate sources, as ChatGPT has a tendency to lie to you.

On the subject of presentation, I’d avoid any form of overlaid box quotes, as these cause grief in a lot of interpreters. I used to play a lot of small Z-code games on my phone and box quotes at the beginning could sometimes prevent the game from starting. They could also cause the game to crash.


In general or Inform? Also, which interpreter (and games)?

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I can’t remember which games, but they would have been games written with Inform 6 or Inform 7 running on an Android phone using the Son of Hunky Punk interpreter. I haven’t used it for a while, so I’m not sure if it’s been updated.


Ok. I tried Infocom games (the most similar to my game would be) and overlap worked fine on Fabularium. Lemme check Son of a Hunky Punk (funny name!).


You’ll probably find it under Hunky Punk (from memory). It was a branch of the Hunky Punk source code with lots of improvements.


This one looks fine:

Is that what you meant? (It’s the most similar.)

Though Hunky Punk doesn’t change colours if there are colour changes in the game.

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That looks fine. Are you playing on a tablet?


No, I turned my phone sideways so the quote would come out.

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