[Chapter 9 Live 02/15/21] (WIP) Interstellar Airgap -- Steal the most secure data in the Universe!

Hello, friends! A few months ago I finished my first Hosted Game, “Score of a Lifetime”! People enjoyed it, with the caveat that it certainly could have been longer and there wasn’t as much branching/romance/everything(!) as there could have been. But I mostly received generous criticism and I’m certainly encouraged to write another one.

If you don’t want any information about the WIP before you jump in, here! Go! (~45k words total with some repetition between paths, nine chapters!)
https://dashingdon.com/play/spokes/interstellar-airgap/mygame/

For the rest of you, here’s some more info. I promise no major spoilers! Some profanity, some violence, some light sexual content (as of chapter 4).

There’s a lot of exposition to start the game, so if your eyes glaze over feel free to skip past it and you can read below when you’re ready. I’ll put the plot summary in the first reply, it’s a lot of words!

Alright, aside from that, I’ve completely outlined the entire game with major choices, branching paths, etc etc. If you’d like to follow along (or just play it when it’s finished), you can expect the following!

Sixteen full chapters, totaling over 100,000 words with an average playthrough between 35000 and 45000.

Six dynamic, interesting major characters.

Five Romance Options.

The ability (of course) to play as male, female, or nonbinary, with (of course) none of the content gated by gender or sexual orientation.

Eleven different End States, with five of those having romantic sub-endings.

And a partridge in a pear tree! Just kidding. No partridges in space.

Standard disclaimer, what you see on Dashingdon is a draft and subject to change (of course). I’ve quicktest and randomtested everything but I’m a tremendously sub-par programmer and likely broke something in a way I haven’t fixed. Please, please, please, hit me with any feedback (in thread, PM, or spokeswriter at protonmail .com) if i’ve written anything broken or with a typo or insensitive/offensive/etc. Okay! that’s all! Summary in next post.

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Here’s the blurb!

Interstellar Airgap

The unimaginatively-named empire of Panwestia currently covers the entire Western Hemisphere and threatens both Russia and Japan. As painful memories of past World Wars begin to swirl, all three countries are doing everything they can to find a peaceful resolution.

But Panwestia’s leaders won’t accept anything but total surrender. They’ve prepared in a way that no other country ever has. Their victory is ensured (if potentially bloody) due to a burgeoning Space Army.

The world laughed when America chose to go back to space in the 21st century. They stopped laughing when the Red, White, and Blue sent up every gun that would work in zero gravity and plenty that wouldn’t. Any full-on war would end quickly as tomorrow’s greatest weapons blow a massive hole through their enemy.

It’s the military space presence that led to the founding of Panwestia and the conquest of the Western Hemisphere. Unparalleled potential for uncontrolled demolition.

Japan and Russia are caught in an impossible dilemma: Surrender to Panwestia, likely giving up the last resistance across the globe—or choose to fight and almost certainly be slaughtered.

But there might be a third way. Secrets that could topple the Panwestian Empire exist in the most secure vault on Earth. Well, not on Earth. That’s what makes it so secure. And you’re going to break in.

But Space is reserved for two groups of people: Data-Licensed Technicians (DLTs) and… another sort.

With billions of dollars invested in space infrastructure while war was paused, the nation turned to another pressing issue. For decades, they had propped up a failing economy with slave labor. The prison-industrial complex had more bodies than ever, but nowhere to put the men and women they deprived of their freedom in pursuit of bumping the Dow a quarter-point.

Many Space Army ships were repurposed for prison transport, and orbiting satellites configured to mine asteroids. Fatalities were high among the initial groups of forced laborers, but years of propaganda took the average citizen’s mind off it. Eventually, space was the destination for all criminals that fell into two groups: those “Too Dangerous” to remain in prison alongside other workhorses, and those “Too Skilled at Escape” who would jeopardize the state’s investment if they remained in Terra cells.

And unluckily for you, you’ve found yourself in one of those groups.

…but this is simply step two of your plan.

The potential to get unfathomably rich, turn the world into a utopia, or rule it with an iron fist? It’s flying around the planet at five miles a second. And soon, you will be too. Have you bitten off more than you can chew? Or will your plans to shape Earth’s future come to fruition?

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Just because of the joke I named my character Elizabeth Partridge so that there’d be a Partridge in space.

Any chance we can get saves?

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Good call. I’ll patch saves into the next update. I haven’t ever implemented them before but it seems pretty straightforward.

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I will be take over an untouchable multicontinental superpower exclusively with the power of punch.
I love that so much. Just fucking punching doors open repeatedly is hilarious to me.

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There’s an error when trying to access the stats page, or it might just be happening to me lol. If it’s not the latter, you’re probably already aware of the problem.

I wanted to ask if there are going to be forced (well, not forced, per say, but I have no other word to describe it atm) romance scenes with the ROs regardless of MC’s sexual orientation? Because idk if Janelle (did I spell that right?) is an RO but there was one scene where my MC passed a blanket to her and a moment happened. I’m mainly asking because my primary MC is female and so straight that if she got any straighter she’d curve. If moments happened, like mentioned above in the blur, I would rather use my bi!MC instead.

Otherwise, very interesting start :+1:t2: I look forward to seeing where this one goes.

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Oi @Niveous lol completely off topic but nice profile pic, Bearded Vulture…

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Oi @SpokesWriter, no stats yet?!?

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oops! most of the code is in there. I’ll enable stats next time i push a new chapter. sorry!

Holy devils!!! Lol I didn’t realised you actually copy pasted this from the story itself when you said that it’s a major spoiler and to avoid it…
:roll_eyes::smile_cat::expressionless:

Very interesting story! You got me hooked after the first few pages :stuck_out_tongue:
I’m gonna keep flirting with everything w/ eyes throughout the whole story :smirk:

I believe you’re still working on the stats page?

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Just pushed an update. No new text, but stats page (kind of) and saves (idk how they work) exist now!

And @Niveous that’s a great question, I’m still figuring out exactly how I want to approach potential moments like that but there’s never going to be anything more than what you described without explicitly opting-in

That part can be avoided altogether by declining to offer the blanket but at the same time, you know, sometimes you just want to be a good person non-romantically! I think that’s going to be edited

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@SpokesWriter found an error:

choicescript_stats line 2: Non-existent variable ‘securitylevel’

shoot, okay. let me take a look. Did you have a game in progress before my update about half an hour ago?

edit: also, ellipses and some other formatting things are broken, I’ll fix that

@SpokesWriter no i just started and i decided to check the stats first before moving on.

oh found another error:

chapter01 line 82: Non-existent variable ‘escapeplan’

chapter01 line 85: Non-existent variable ‘escapeplan’

chapter01 line 79: Non-existent variable ‘escapeplan’

Oops. When I was implementing saves I used an old version of startup.txt. Should be fixed now

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Oi @SpokesWriter



Are these choices supposed to effect the stats anyway?!?
Despite that + and - nothing’s changing…

Even the money wasn’t added to the stats…

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They are, yes. Thanks for the reminder, I’ll have them affecting the stats page the next time I upload a new chapter. There aren’t any actual checks in the book so far so I haven’t put the code in just yet

Ooh… Lol seeing those + Strength, +Dexterity like on the choices, thought that something’s gone wrong…

will there also be a part where you can select your sexuality or does we just do it throughout the story- like a friend choice, flirt choice, etc?