Let's Talk about Sequels in Cog and HG

Hi there guys with the new release of Sordwin and the upcoming Superlatives game this month I ended up looking back to the previous titles in the series and noticed in my library all this old games that I played for which a sequel or the “next chapter” is now a work in progress for this (or the next) year

To mention just a few:

  • Psy High - High Summer,
  • Grand Academy for Future Villains II
  • Wayhaven Chronicles - Book 2
  • The Fallen Hero - Retribution
  • The Versus sequel
  • Lord of Aswick - Voice of God
  • Have Human, Will Travel! (still crossing fingers to see it come to life one day).

Of this follow up games many were totally unexpected because I feel like the story was in fact already over in the previous title (even if I enjoyed the news and probably will buy the new games)

As few examples I could think off to give you an idea of what I mean I pick up:

  • Doomsday on Demand 2
  • Zombie Exodus: Safe Haven
  • the Champion of the God’s sequel “Exile of the Gods” now a future 2019 release
  • the Choice of Broadsides: HMS Foraker

as these for me were Totally unexpected like when they told me a new Rocky/Creed movie was coming out in theaters (or if I told you exist a broadway/musical version of Rocky) (first reaction was “Why they did that?” the next one was “Well let’s go and see it” )

For others titles however like Choice of Vampire and Founders Saga or even Swords of the Elements instead I feel like the possible sequel/ending they need for many reasons ended up in limbo and probably will never be picked up again (even if the stories were good).

In opening this topic I wish to ask if you ever felt this way:

Did you ever had the sensation a sequel or the next chapter (that could even be a 3rd title in a series not just the direct sequel) of these games were unnecessary ?

Or on the contrary did you ever think “This game just need to have a SEQUEL!!! (O V O)” (sorry could not refrain myself (=D)
and of course which one of the many choicescript games made you feel like this :wink:

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Just a note to say as the lead editor of Superlatives and Grand Academy, neither was written with a sequel directly in mind. In fact I’m currently working on a pitch for a Sherlock Holmes game that is being written with a sequel in mind, as a two game or a trilogy, perhaps. I believe the upcoming Pon Para was planned as a trilogy (and knowing Kyle you won’t have to wait long for the next installment :wink: .)

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I often feel like writers just keep the ending quite open for the possibility of creating a sequel without necessarily planning on making one yet. They first look at how successful the first game is. These games sometimes have sequels that I feel were unnecessary, but not bad or anything like that. They have to keep the story going somehow which can be a challenge if that wasn’t your plan.
On the other hand you have series like the Wayhaven Chronicles which planned on having sequels from the very beginning and those tend to be quite good (although for the Wayhaven chronicles I obviously wouldn’t know yet).

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Zombie Exodus: Safe Haven was an unexpected sequel, but oh man was I happy to have it.

Broadsides: Foraker was more spin-off than sequel. It was a little interesting and fun, but didn’t really connect.

I’d have to say Hero Project had the most unneeded sequel.

Tin Star is the story I would most want to see continue, even though it was wrapped up.

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Thanks for clarify this (^ ^) (The Sherlock Holmes one and the Pon Para from Kyle sound quite interesting and I can’t wait to hear more about it). I can understand some series are planned with Sequels in mind (the author tell a longer story and divide it in more parts) but as PoppinBubble rightly mention some sequels feel like are “born” just following the success of the “first” game and sometimes these ones are unexpected and it’s really hard to say how much they add to the story while there is other games (maybe less popular) that feel like they need to have more chapters/titles to expand the story

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I totally agree with you on Zombie Exodus Safe Haven (It was unexpected and is still incomplete but was good to play - part II was a little short).

And Also Interesting choice on picking Tin Star for a game who need a Sequel (without making spoilers :wink: )

On the Hero Project I say I like the way the author is now trying to “connect” the old concluded series of Hero Rises/Hero Project with The Versus one but I agree it felt a little unneded

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I figured Tin Star would surprise, but I really loved the world and characters, liked the system…the plot was the weakest part. So from that angle, a sequel wouldn’t feel as weird.

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Hopefully the new content update will help with that.

And I tend to view Safe Haven more as a spin-off than a sequel. In some ways, I like when games do that…it allows me to experience the world again, but without worrying about retcons, etc.

As for games being open-ended on endings, I don’t think most authors plan it with sequels in mind (though of course some do!). In this case, I think it is more of a genre thing…they don’t want to pin stuff too specific in the future which might irritate a player/reader…sort of the 'this is my character and I don’t like what the ending did"

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Little short Little short???! More 300,000 words is no short by no means. Is the three first Harry potter books altogether in the alleged TOO SHORT.

Then is free updated with 100,000 more half million for the price of a coffee.

People sometimes don’t value enough this company and writers job. Ea would made us pay 80 dollar and dlc updates.

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Here’s another thread (it’s quite old) that talks about the pros and cons of writing a single IF versus writing a series, if you’re interested in learning more.

A few published CoG/HG authors even commented their own experiences with writing a series. It’s very insightful and I encourage you to read it, regardless if you’re a prospective author thinking about writing your own IF series or just a reader of all things IF!

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I think you misread my message as I talked about the part II of Zombie Exodus Safe Heaven the update to be precise was (in my opinion and I could be wrong) a little short and end up on a highcliff (as you say for a price of an American coofee I’m been too critic and pretending too much (but even comparing an IF game to a EA big company game seems to be a far fetched comparison as is like I’m comparing a rock with the moon). Anyway all this goes aside the point of the topic (I liked your input anyway as you say should be more considerate of the work done by the authors)

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The fact is this is sell in episodes. And episode used to have cliffhangers is that way Since Dikens episode novels published in magazines in XIX same Tell tale etc…

Ea has a if free to play game it was launched with Dragon age inquisition as promoting material and you were mayor in Orlais giving additional content toDAi same bit in comic was launched for Mass effect recap .
Tell tale is considered a Videogame company but its core is If. The policy some if virtual novels are becoming similar to big videogames or netflix. Is a way put in perspective the scope Cog and hosted has. Half million of words is not short objectively speaking. If this where a book would be 200% more expensive

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not really . If you like something (which I do often) you get the feeling that you wish it never end . So its a great awesome surprise when something is picked up again after a long time (or years) .

That happen when alien 4 showed up . I couldn’t wait to watch it!

And the same for Fallout 3 . The older fallout 1 and 2 were like so amazing . Imagine the shock when that one dropped after such a long time .

So yeah , depand on how much you like something . Of course , it isn’t always happy dandy omg-its-a-sequel-can’t-wait . Sometimes a sequel will ruin the original game . And you wish it never happen .

Good exemple would be the Longest Journey which was an amazing game and the sequel ‘Dreamfall and dreamfall chapter’’ which suck so bad and have nothing to do with the original story…save for the butchering of what was .

very few games leave you thinking ‘I hope there is a sequel’’ . But I do get often the urge to see those characters again . Sometimes it also has something about how short a story felt…cose it was so good…it ended too soon for my taste :sweat_smile:

T-rex Time machine is one , I wish there was a sequel…

Heart of the house too!

The Hero unmasked .

6th grade detectives .

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You totally get what I mean (put it in much better way) and is true that no matter how good a sequel is but it matter how much you player want it, however sometimes it could happen that the “next game” feel like it ruin (or simply don’t add much) to the previous titles and in comparison there is many others one titled games I played that felt “I would like to see more of this” (for how good they involved the reader/player in the story) also mostly all your picks were good games to play: T-Rex time machine was a dream come True (like choice of the robots) and 6th grade Detectives reminded me of the old 80s kids movie. The hero unmasked was a funny/ok story and probably is the one with more potential for a sequel (even if the twin plot is already done). Heart choice for me was difficult to read (immersive but a hard English for a foreigner)

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Planning for a sequel, executing the development and getting it to the finish line is an extremely hard thing to do - especially for new authors. It is hard to explain but I feel doing this is harder for an IF game than it is for a normal book series.

When most CoG and HG games are made, my bet is that the author is not even sure they will want to do a second game.

Concerning ZE:SH: It has been an evolving “Work In Progress” and has changed so much from when it was first conceived. It is a sophomore work by @JimD that he tried some ideas and mechanics out in - I’m pretty sure he learned a lot from this title and that you will see what he is able to take away from it going forward.

As @Lys says… these works are more of spin-offs because they are all taking place at the same time in Jim’s game universe and they perhaps should be viewed differently than true sequels.

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I get your point but as you pointed out Telltale (a soon to be closed company by the way) I’m talking about unexpected Sequels in specific games made with choicescript particularly the ones that could be spawned by one good game and end up to be unnecessary (as they were never planned and were created after the success of the first title and could even end up ruin the series (cough Walking dead cough)

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We are focusing too much on one game (and aside this I want to say I’m not critic about the author work, in fact I liked it ) but I stay on my opinion (Everyone could see it in their own way) when I put Safe Haven in the sequel category for the simply mention of the name “Zombie Exodus” the author for me mean it to be part of a series (for how you put it is like you are saying to me the Aliens VS. Predators movie is a spin off of 2 movies Predators and Alien they just keep the same universes, ok but in the “sequence” for me they always come after Predators 2)

Aside this point of view on what should be considered a sequel and what a spin-off (A valid point you made) what you say on working on a project and succeed in finish it with all the effort a writer need to go through in the process I could get that sometimes a “next game” could never happen. What I like to know is in your own opinion if there ever was some of the games you played you felt like “this was not necessary the series was good with just the title before” or "I would like for this title to have another sequel/episode/chapter to it (even a side story) "

And then you have people who don’t seem to try

Agreed. Personally I found it’s easier to plan a sequel by having a whole story and treating the cliffhanger as yet another branching point.
It’s weird to describe but, it somehow feels easier when you think of ‘part 1’s endings’ as choices (made indirectly) branching off and coming back together in ‘part 2’ than of ‘endings’ to part one

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-Well not everyone could be an astronaut but at least anyone could dream to go to the moon, no?-
XD Aside that seems a good way to put together a sequel (in this case is planned from the begin and the story is more solid)

Yeah sometimes the story just becomes long enough that you need three books.

I think one of the problems with proper sequels (different from a planned series) are that the games that I really love, have very diverse endings. So, even if I wanted a sequel to Tinstar, a sequel to what? My game was so very different from everybody else’s that it would run the risk of turning int o DAI and not make anybody happy with how it treats what has gone before.

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