The best thing about writing an audio only game

… is the wonderful freedom of never again having to care about Inform 7’s maddening line break system.

(By the way if people know of any other parser games specifically intended to be audio only, I’d love to know. I haven’t looked very hard but have only found CYOA-style ones so far.)


…the nostalgia high from creating a 1930s style aural drama.

What system are you using to develop it? I’m working on one right now using Adventuron but it won’t be ready for quite some time (well, fully narrated text with sound effects, so not only audio so that people who cannot hear can also play it, the goal is richness and optimal accessibility)


That sounds cool too. I had never even heard of Adventuron.

I just decided that in some ways, the last thing the world needs right now is another excuse to look at a screen, and also, wouldn’t it be cool if a IF game was actually optimised to work for people listening and speaking to it rather than this being an optional extra for e.g. the visually impaired. So I’m only going to release my Inform 7 game wrapped in glulx wrapped in quixe wrapped in more javascript which will target web plus mobile OS’s starting with android, with zero visuals, no text no nothing. I’m also enjoying the fact that I haven’t seen anyone else do something like that yet, but as I said, I haven’t looked very hard.


Oh, and I didn’t say - I decided, zero sound-effects, but yes music. Sound effects feels like a rabbit hole to me and I have to draw the line somewhere.


Are you using TTS or recorded audio for the narration?

Both. I think this way is inevitable if you want to have the benefits of the physical world model that Inform offers, and also story narration that is bearable for the average player. With regard to the physical word, I want the player to have the flexibility to do things with objects that could result in procedurally generated output that I never anticipated so couldn’t have recorded. I want the player to have the feeling they are interacting with a rich world with many possibilities. If not, I might as well be doing CYOA. On the other hand, TTS still sounds like a robot and it just won’t cut it for my purple prose, so room descriptions and the like are voice recordings.

I’m hoping this will make sense to the player because even if you don’t have much clue what goes on under the surface of a parser game, I think it still makes sense to hear “I didn’t understand” or “You can’t see that here” in a robot voice, even if room descriptions are real voice. In the introduction to the game, the parser is semi-personified as a robot, to help introduce the player to this approach.