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Thread: "Choose-Your-Own-Adventure" books?

  1. #1

    "Choose-Your-Own-Adventure" books?

    Who here enjoys "Choose-Your-Own-Adventure" books? Especially in the fantasy and sci-fi genres. And what are the best of them that can be recommended? And if you were wanting to create your own in what sort of direction would you like for it to go in?

  2. #2
    I don't really read them myself, but I think that there's interesting potential by combining them with the web original genre. You could probably do a lot of interesting stuff with that like hiding a link in the text or maybe using a cookie to track how many times someone goes to a specific page and have something special happen if they end up starting over too many times. (I don't know if cookies can actually do that.)
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  3. #3
    Senior Member TheCatholicCrow's Avatar
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    I haven't read any since Goosebumps.

    That being said, I would agree ... ebooks and virtual books would offer all sorts of interesting options that print cannot.

    I don't think I'd ever have the patience to write one ... though I guess it would simplify the issue of - should I have the character do X or Y? ...

    What age/ demographic are you hoping to write for?

    If that's something you're into, you might find this useful : Choose Your Own Adventure Templates.
    Check out my blog Easy Peasy Fiction!

  4. #4
    Check out this site: Storygames > ChooseYourStory.com

    These are written by both amateur and experienced users of the website, so the quality will not always be superb. However there is a handy rating feature next to each story, so I'd start with the stories that have a 7 or 6.5 and see if you like it.
    Fear The Stilton Swindler, The Emmental Criminal, The Gouda Gangster, The Roquefort Robber, The Parmezan Pirate, The Cheddar Cheat, The Manchego Marauder, The Mozerella Mobster, The Sbrinz Prince, The Edam Imam, The Camembert Camorrista, The Limburger Pilferer.

  5. #5
    Note that digital CYOA-style books that include interactivity other than hyperlinks might not be allowed to be sold through the Kindle Store as an ebook, but might have to be sold as an app. This was something I heard in a Facebook group I belong to. Iirc, someone had tried to include custom-coded interactivity in their ebook, and was told they could not sell it through the Kindle Store.

    Examples of a CYOA-style of ebook that can be sold through the Kindle Store are the Click Your Poison (CYP) books by James Schannep. These books use hyperlinks and no other special coding (e.g., no JavaScript). The disadvantage with these books is that you can't prevent the reader from reading any or all of the text out of sequence.

    To enforce the sequence of paragraphs, you'd have to create an app. The disadvantage here is that there are so many different types of devices that can run apps, and you have to make a different app for each device type you want to support. The company Choice of Games (Choice of Games LLC) provides a language that can be used to create games that they can package and sell for multiple mobile devices. You have to go through them to sell any work that uses their language.

    Edit: Another alternative is to set up your own web site and publish text-based games there, which would allow you to use custom coding (e.g., JavaScript). Then you just have to worry about how you would make money from your games, if that is a concern.
    Last edited by Michael K. Eidson; 2-17-17 at 6:24 PM.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member Creed's Avatar
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    Choose-Your-Own stories have kind of faded away these last few decades, but they've definitely found new life online. If you're looking to play choose-your-owns, interactive fiction, or games like Zork I'd highly recommend checking out what people are crafting with Text Adventures and Twine, they're really quite amazing.

    For a class last semester I made an experimental story in Text Adventures and I'd recommend it as a platform, it was very simple. I used it for a playable story, however, not for a Zork-like RPG game with rooms and items. If you want to check out my (uber cool) story, I'll insert a link here: Cityscape.

    You can't see the mechanics behind it, but it's essentially just hyperlinking text to simulate movement through a fantasy cityscape. I haven't used Twine yet, but my understanding is that it's great at doing this, and can be visually customized further than Text Adventures.

    Some interesting examples are howling dogs, All Hail the Spider God, the RPG Portcullis, and the genuinely horrifying my father's long, long legs.

    These are extraordinary ways to shape narratives, and any writer worth their salt should get a thousand new ideas just trying them out. I urge everyone to experiment.
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  7. #7
    Senior Member K.S. Crooks's Avatar
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    This type of story always gave me a greater feel for being part of the story, since it clearly states -Indy (whomever the hero is) tells you- or - you do such and such-. And of course you get to make decisions about where to go and what to do. When I was around 8 or 9 I wrote a story or two...which are now off in the great ether of the universe.

    I think the trick to writing one is to create three to five story paths that lead to some type of successful result. Put in key moments when a decision must be made. The result could be the same in some or none of the paths. Then create failing paths that stem from the key points. It's the same sort of thing you do when writing a regular story, but instead of discarding the possibilities that you don't want to use, you keep them and let the reader choose which way the story will go.
    Last edited by K.S. Crooks; 2-19-17 at 11:20 PM.
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