What is a PostMortem? [From Lounge Discussion]

Ah so the lounge is less about the crook things:tm: of the elite and more akin to the semi-inebriated after party where the food club is debating the notion of what constitutes pasta while the local linguist is writing a love letter to formulaic adaptivity.

Hence comes my

Question: what exactly -is- post mortem and how would i go about elaborating on one? Also how am i supposed to resist punning on the matter since my IF piece was rather exact on the meaning of the concept?

A.k.a Post mortem post mortem vita (this is a cry for help)


I would say: Go on punning! :smile:


A post-mortem is basically a look back at your game from first ideas to final comp reception – you share your journey, go over what worked and what didn’t, what you learned, what you would have done better, what you thought went well, etc. While most of them tend to be kind of serious I don’t think there’s any actual rule that they be so; therefore I give you permission to pun away!


@Encorm explained it. Often for commercial games they do live talks and answer questions. Essentially it’s “what has been learned, what worked, what would we do differently?” You can also consider it kind of like the DVD commentary track from a movie that explains the thought process and what went on behind the scenes.

For IF, you can write the longest essay you want talking about your game and many people love that kind of information.


/hides my postmortem being half as long as my game…

PM are so much fun! You get to do a retrospective on things and often realise stuff about what you did (like why the code was so bad or why the story ended up this way). It’s really part of the learning/creating experience!


So apparently my dad lurks this forum now and then (he doesn’t have an account), and he said that compared to what everyone else had for a post-mortem post, mine was a “post-mortem novel”.

So, uh… right there with you.


Would anyone have objections if I move the Post Mortem discussion to a public thread?


I need to write a “real” postmortem one of these days, but I think I will wait long enough to avoid RTE fatigue.

The prevailing theme will be “I can’t believe this thing runs!”

As a reader, I think they’re fun. They also seem important as historical records.


Your Post-Mortem for RTW was ICONIC!


Thank you! What I really want to do is write about my experience with learning Inform 7. Both @AmandaB and I have publicly said that we could not have made game(s) without Inform 7. So, I’d like to encourage people like me to give it a try! Turns out, I really loved making a game. It’s a cool thing in my life that I didn’t have before.

Maybe I should just handle it as a standalone essay at Gold Machine. That way, I can let the postmortem continue to be its own thing. I’m more likely to reach people who haven’t used Inform 7 there, anyway.

To TC, you made a Vorple game, right? I think that would make for an especially valuable postmortem, since a lot of I7 authors aren’t familiar with it.


Yep Vorple! I’ll get around to making a postmortem by the first week of June, hopefully it won’t be too “late” by then.


Oh, absolutely. The whole reason I never wrote a game before was not that I didn’t have ideas-- I had a million of them. It’s because I didn’t know how to do it and I was pretty sure I couldn’t do it. But Inform, for all its quirks and for all my grousing about it, is a really awesome tool for easing a person into coding. I’ve said this many times before and I’ll say it again: if I could do it, so can anybody.

Why not put at GM and tack it to the end of your existing postmortem, too?


(I bolded the text, not Drew.)

I’ve been keeping a journal of my (hilariously misguided) attempts at figuring out Vorple. I’m hoping to ultimately use it it to put together a video series, tentatively titled “Vorple for Vummies.”

Searching YouTube, there’s a few videos expressing what Vorple can do, but nothing regarding how to use it. When the time comes, I’d love the opportunity to pass draft scripts for the videos by someone more knowledgeable. I’d hate to misinform folks (heh), even unintentionally.