CoG Novice // Advice Appreciated


#1

Greetings,

I’m currently working on my first Choice of Games novel. For those of you that have released your own interactive piece for purchase/download, what are some of the ways that you approached completing it? I’m pretty much asking for advice about branching, plots, sub-plots, and (most importantly) the choices that lead to those. Do you write with a guideline (ie. Already knowing what will be the overall focus of each individual chapter) or do you write without rails (ie. From beginning to end, you do not know what will happen, and you go with the flow)?

The following question is heavily geared toward those that have had their pieces successfully released (I’m summoning YOU, Choice of Broadsides // Heroes Trilogy ): What was your time management like? What would you recommend to us Choice of Games novices about being active in getting our interactive novels released? I just don’t want to fall into limbo, again.

Thank you,
Allen Avery


#2

The first thing you should decide: Are you making in interactive novel, or a text-based game? Or in other words is your story going to be mostly linear or highly branched or somewhere in between?

I know Cataphrak who wrote Sabers of Infinity and is currently writing Guns of Infinity said he has a general outline of the entire game, then writes out the code and some brief scene notes for the chapter he’s currently working on, then fills in the outline with all the actual writing. My own time management for the game I’m working on is similar.


#3

I advise you to plan each chapter so that you know what will happen in each one rather than having a brief outline of the whole game and “go with the flow” as you were.

Although I haven’t released a game, I have worked on both techniques and I find planning each chapter to be significantly more helpful as, for me, it puts things into perspective and motivates me more when I have writers block. If you just make it up as you go along, I find it that you’re more likely to give up with the game due to not knowing what to write next. However, that’s not to say that this technique won’t work for people, just for me it doesn’t. Both techniques have their advantages and disadvantages.


#4

Greetings,

I thank you both very much for your insight, as well as any others that choose to reply to this thread. @Crotale You mentioned Cataphrak, the author of both Sabers of Infinity and (the future) Guns of Infinity. I haven’t had the pleasure of being able to experience either, but would you say that they were rather linear or highly branched? Is your definition of linear being that ultimately your decisions will still lead to the same result? Highly branched meaning multiple different endings? I’m hungry for knowledge!

Thank you,
Allen Avery


#5

Most SoI was somewhere in the middle, leaning towarsd linear. Most CoGs return to the source eventually. It’s just so much easier to write that way.