So I thought, in my spare time, rather than watch more rubbish telly or chase the dog around the house to get my socks back, that I would do something meaningful such as write a text adventure. My aim is to scare the kids with something terrifying, then smirk to myself as they too find hours of sleeplessness.
There seems a world of options and I was wondering if someone could help explain them all.
There’s Ink which, at first glance, seems superb. Who doesn’t like Sorcery and 80 Days right? On the face of it it all seems fantastic, but I imagine, coming from a large stable, it’s a powerhouse of a tool designed for studios and teams rather than a fat bloke with a laptop. There’s also no sign of any kind of iDevice or Android support for the resulting game, as far as I can see, which would be a killer for me as the kids only have tablets and their web browsers are restricted to those kid-friendly browsers which don’t play nice with, well, anything much.
There’s Inform7. At first this felt like smacking my head in to a car moving down the motorway whilst having my feet taped to the moving wheels. However, once you get your brain around actually “writing” a story, rather than developing it, it does become easier. I’m not entirely sure, coming from a coding background, that my brain will ever be happy with the syntax. There are nuances to the structure which are clearly english, but perhaps not english I’ve used since school. However I’m loving the idea of the plugins, such as Vorple (is that still being actively developed?) and the ability to generate bog standard Z machine blorbs means that I can easily find a way to wrap that for Android and publish using my app store account.
There’s then a host of “other things” such as Twine and the like. Now I’m not entirely sure what these are. Are they Inform type creators of stories, or are they plug-ins aimed at certain things, such as combat, or story path dynamics?
So, I’m after an idiot-friendly text adventure (and/or interactive fiction) creation tool that will be easy to get something out without pain, but grow with me as my confidence grows. It has to be able to publish Android/iDevice friendly games as I can publish these using my app store account easily enough. Plugins would be super if possible. I’m not fussed about graphics or complex stuff (unity integration in Ink looks amazing but I’ll never use it, I’m happy with text).
Happy to hear of anything from anyone.