I am thankful to be able to run this competition for a third year. Last year’s competition was awesome and can’t wait to see what we get this year. I’ve seen a lot of new writers on the site this year so hopping to have a great turn out for this round of writing. I would like to thank the staff of CoG for allowing this competition to continue. With that said, I have a little disclaimer:
In no way does CoG endorse or give written consent for this comp. I am solely responsible and any problems or concerns, any issues should be addressed directly to me.
I would like to give a special thank you to Protagonist for sponsoring an additional $100.prize money for most interesting failure. I have listed under sponsors what this entails.
What is CScomp?
It is your chance to write an interactive game in thirty days using choicescript.
Who can compete?
Anybody is welcome to enter as long as you use the choicescript format.
How do I enter and when is the competition held?
We hold the comp for the month of May, judging happens through June and the winners announced at the start of July. The competition is free to enter. To enter simply give a shout here.
Do I have to turn in a complete game?
To finish a complete game in just thirty days is a very difficult challenge. So no, we would rather see a game that is free of bugs and a meaningful story then a complete game.
What about custom code or mods?
If you feel this adds to your game then by all means go for it. While we have seen some very creative game design, this does not really boost the overall score of the game.
Can it be a co-op work?
Last year we did try to have co-op entries, none were entered. This year you may enter a co-op game but one person must be designated as the main contact. How you share the prize money is up to your group.
When can we start work on the game?
You may outline, but work on the game may not start until the theme has been announced.
Are we allowed beta testers?
The short answer is yes. Judges may not beta test games. Beta testing has to be privately done. (No links to the game in the forums) The spirit of the contest is that it should be a relatively small number of beta testers, but no limit is set due to the fact some beta testers don’t give any feedback and setting a number would be unfair.
Can we share?
You may only enter one game for the competition. Games may not have been worked on prior to the contest or shared in any fashion until the completion of the competition. At the start of the competition a theme will be announced. The theme will be open ended for easy interpretation by the writer. It is understood that any game you enter will be shared with the general public at the close of the competition. If you do not wish to share your game do not enter the comp. The judges will have the month of June to judge the game. The winners will be announced in the first part of July and prize monies will then be paid. To receive prize money you must have a PayPal account. All prize money is USD and I pay the cost of sending by PayPal.
1st place 200
2nd place 150
3rd place 50
Of course we will announce any other prizes that are donated. If you wish to sponsor this comp please contact me.
One thing that I’ve noticed in ChoiceScript games is that succeeding on a test generally drives the story forward in some way, whereas failure results in a closed door (and perhaps a “Game Over” screen).
This tends to encourage the player to quit and restart after any failure, rather than being willing to roll with the punches. I’m not a big fan of this: to my mind the best fictional characters don’t win all the time, but experience setbacks and respond to them. I’d like to see stories which are more accommodating of failure: not necessarily as something which is better than success, just different and equally interesting.
So, I’m offering a $100 reward for the most interesting outcome from a failed test.
For example, losing a duel might be the only way to unlock a potential romance path (either with the NPC being dueled, or a third party). Or being beaten and taking revenge could result in narrative options which aren’t available if the Main Character wins the first time round (e.g. studying poisons or learning forbidden magic).
I want to give @Pace675 a huge thank you for adding to the prize money this year.
A romance conflict, have more than one romance option? Well if your story does, and there is a conflict of interest, jealousy , or any other detail that brings the npcs to life and adds to their story or story line $100 will go to the best romance arc. If there are no romances that meet the criteria then the donation shall go to the prize purse 50 more for first 25 for second and 25 for 3rd.
Be it against deadly forces or personal emotions, a great conflict is essential to moving a story along. The ability to keep an audience intrigued depends greatly on the quality of the conflict in the story. Thus, I’d like to award a prize ($50) to the story that has a particular point of conflict, internal or external, that is the most compelling and can really keep readers excited.
I’d also like to award an additional $25 to the story that has the most well developed and interesting character, be it the protagonist or the supporting cast.