Your favorite commercial IF?

1.) If you have to name only ONE game, which commercial IF is your favorite? (Preferably not the old Infocoms and Magnetic Scrolls but rather from after 1999.)

2.) Are there many commercial IF at all?

Edit: It’s worth noting that both parser games and choice games are relevant for me.


You should look at the catalogue of Choice of Games (all 3 labels) or apps like Choices and Episodes. There are toooooons of commercial IF out there.
Also Inkle (less large of a catalogue).


Thaumistry: In Charms Way by Bob Bates.


Probably SLAMMED! (Choice of Games) for me! I really enjoyed learning about the world of wrestling, which I knew nothing about beforehand. The decisions and overall narrative arc also felt very nice.

Most of my contact with commercial IF has been through CoG. I was in high school when their very first games came out – free ones like Paranoia and Choice of Broadsides – and I was more than happy to purchase paid ones once those were released!

I’m too young to have experienced the golden era of commercial parser games, but I did encounter a couple of small ones on Steam.

If I remember correctly, the Episodes style is usually free to play, but with microtransactions to unlock the “premium” choices?


Choice of Robots. 10/10


Does formally commercial but now it’s free counts?

Cause Tristam Island is neato!
(I played the french version with some peeps a while back, and I’m sure the English version is as cool!)


Hadean Lands is honestly quite amazing. It’s a well written parser game that treats alchemy very much like object oriented programming, where you build smaller rituals and then abstract them into larger structures.

I also enjoyed Tristam Island by Hugo Labrande (sniped by manon!). I believe it’s free now. It’s a lowkey game exploring an island, and came out recently on retro devices.

Anchorhead has a commercial version, and considering it’s consistently in the top 3 of Best of IF polls and IFDB polls I’d feel comfortable recommending it to most people. The commercial version’s art is nice.

Of Choice of Games, Choice of Robots and Creme de la Creme are exceptional. I also like Heart of the House quite a bit (a gothic novel) and Choice of Magics is fun for most people. Vampire the Masquerade: Night Road really feels like playing an epic Vampire the Masquerade campaign with a good DM.

Fallen London is fun if you like idle games you play every day. It’s free, but a lot of the good content is paid.

My son finished Heaven’s Vault recently and enjoyed it, and while much of the game is centered on its graphics and movement, it has significant text interactions and fans of IF may enjoy it.

Edit: Worldsmith is another formerly commercial parser game that is really very large and has graphics and even I think video??


I loved choice of games’ a study in steampunk way back when. Also very fond of open sorcery and its sequel sea++.

The first time I played shadow in the cathedral I nearly set my apartment on fire so that gets a :+1: from me also


I really wanna play this one day.


Hadean Lands for parser, VtM: Night Road for choice. I think it’s the first ChoiceScript piece I ever replayed to get different endings.


I think the only game that I’ve purchased in the 21st century has been Tristam Island by Hugo Labrande, but I haven’t played it yet.


Fabled Lands is my current go to Favorite. It’s not a computer game, but it’s so good, across several books, that I’m continually impressed with it.

The only one that I really like is Wishbringer. I know that’s old stuff, but its charm never went away for me, even after all these years.

There are many good projects recently, but those two have stood the test of time.


My favorite:


In my case, no matter how you rephrase the question, the answer is going always to be Trinity.

But I never approached it like a commercial product, it was always available to me as abandonaware or as an important piece of preserved art.

If I had to decide on a game that I experienced as a commercial release, I would go for Sorcery 2! followed very closely by 80 Days.


I hope to try Fabled Lands if it is still available. Thanks for the lead.

PS. I found it on Amazon - $10 for the first of 14. It is supposed to arrive tomorrow. A new adventure…


It is now.


Oh, I remember this now! I never saw, much less played, the original game books, but there was a free Java version from fifteenish years ago that I really dug - what was cool about this series is that the different books were all different geographies, so you could roam between them and decide which quests to take, which made it feel very open-ended.

I think last time I played it only had the first four books implemented but now looks like it’s got the whole (original) series - might be worth diving back in again…

(I should say, the author of the Java application mentions correspondence with the authors so it seems at least semi-authorized).


Either Long Live the Queen or 80 Days would be my favourite commercial IF. The former if you absolutely make me pick 1.

Since I count visual novels among the ranks of IF, there’s a lot of commercial IF out there.


I really like Forgotton Anne:

Step into a hand-animated realm of wonder

Imagine a place where everything that is lost and forgotten goes; old toys, letters, single socks. The Forgotten Lands is a magical world inhabited by Forgotlings; creatures composed of mislaid objects longing to be remembered again.

Forgotton Anne is a seamless cinematic adventure game with light puzzle platforming elements. You play as Anne, the enforcer who keeps order in the Forgotten Lands, as she sets out to quash a rebellion that might prevent her master, Bonku, and herself from returning to the human world…

The developers want to make it feel like you’re playing an interactive Studio Ghibli film.

I think it would classify as choice IF — it can be represented in Twine for example and is represented internally in Twine. It just also has visuals, voice acting and light platformer-puzzle elements on top.

The prequel for this game (Forgotlings) is set to be released later this year.


I love the premise behind Forgotton Anne. I could use that in a parser game. Why is it “Forgotton” rather than “Forgotten”? Some sort of word play, perhaps?