"Key Decisions" - Stat Screen Panel Discussion

This is not something I have seen much, but boy would I love for there to be more games where there is a “Key Decisions” panel you select in the Stats Screen to allow for the reader to be reminded of choices they made prior. It doesn’t have to include everything, but just the most important things that happened.

Sometimes, I put down a book, and if I want to come back to it I have no context for what I did prior, I think including something like this could be rather beneficial and would not involve much work on the author’s side either [I am imagining using something like a flag system or multireplace. I could write up an example if that doesn’t seem clear.] A quick example would be upon a completion of each chapter, a flag would trigger that would make the key choices visible, so it would update each chapter.

Anyway, I just wanted to discuss it, I suppose. Drawbacks, benefits, and the like. I am probably going to implement one into my upcoming WIP and my current one. I just realized that it would be real nice IG :joy:


I have seen it maybe once off the top of my head and I think it is a really good idea for games with saves between parts. I have trouble remembering everything I did in a given save file.

It could work when reading a story and taking an extended break too. I’m not really sure if there would be drawbacks besides coding it which is not hard just a little extra work.

For one of my future projects I do intend to have a “recap” choice in the stats which will give you a brief overview of what occurred in past chapters. I just need to find the best way of coding it.

Exciting! I think it would not be very difficult if you use numerals predominantly when making variables (as I do), but even with true or false I feel it would not be too difficult to implement.

Let’s say we just finished chapter 1, at the end of chapter one, we could have a flag called CH1_Complete at the end of that chapter. We set that to true, and that will reveal the recap descriptions for that chapter.

In Startup:

*create CH1_Complete false
*create CH1_Choice1 4
*set Background ""
  *comment You need to make sure that choices using numerals are set to 1 bigger than your total choices. Setting it to zero will flag it as being a bug when trying to use testing software on it.

In Chapter 1:

content... writing... words...

Who were you?

  #A criminal
    *set CH1_Choice1 1
    *set Background "Criminal"
    You were a criminal, now you remember.
  #A vigilante
    *set CH1_Choice1 2
    *set Background "Vigilante"
    You were a vigilante, now you remember.
  #A hero
    *set CH1_Choice1 3
    *set Background "Hero"
    You were a hero, now you remember.

more content...

*set CH1_Complete true

end of chapter...

In Stats Screen, have a choice including the option to go to Key Decisions.

*if (CH1_Complete = true)
  @{CH1_Choice1 You were a well known criminal in your past.|You considered yourself an operator for the law, while operating largely outside of it, a vigilante.|You made sure to align yourself with the good side, a hero through and through.|If you see this, then there is a bug.}

I don’t know, this is what I was thinking of on first blush at least. Mind you, if you decide to write out descriptions of events with multi replace it would be a bit of work, but that is why I stated it was a “Key Decisions” panel and not a full recap of the game thus far :skull:

1 Like

Would definitely fit one of my projects as well. I’ll need to think about this.

I like this, especially for long and/or complicated games! I did something similar in Crème de la Crème as a main plot recap and it wasn’t too much effort, though I didn’t end up doing it for other games. Nice to have a reminder of what you’re up to after being away, like quest journals in other types of games.

Utility-wise there’s no doubt that a short recap would be appreciated by every reader for it’s usefulness. Beyond that though, I tend to find when playing games that feature dynamically updating text(such as a recap on the stats page) that is written in
prose(as opposed to coloured bars changing slightly) greatly helps that particular MC feel more alive and unique, heightening immersion.

Point being, even if it were a sizable amount of work to implement, a section of the stats screen that dynamically updates throughout the game recapping the choices made is more than worth the effort required. The more detailed the better- really adding to the feeling that the player is carving out their own unique story within your game.

1 Like

I have been thinking about doing a Glossary for mine that would serve as a mix of recap and reminder of the different characters and their significance to the story. It’ll probably be the last thing I put in my game.

I don’t write in ChoiceScript now, but my twine project has a summary section that summarizes the major plot development of every chapter prior to the current chapter that the viewer is on. I have a chapter number variable, and the summary code just displays summaries of chapters that are less than that number. Complexity is based on the amount of “key decision” variables that’s necessary to check and write for. :sweat_smile:

1 Like

Either/both Robots and Magics had a feature like this. I’d suggest taking a look at that.

1 Like