Before I get into this I want to say I love CoG and Hosted Games. <-Yes I am using this to placate people before talking trash but it doesn’t make it any less true. I have a majority of every title released on both and have spent a vast amounts of time playing these, and replaying some.
That last bit brings me to the issue. Replay ability. These are supposed to be interactive stories where the players choices affect the game but more and more we are sent on a linear pass/fail journey based on the authors whim where the only difference is the epilogue.
I say this knowing that my favorite game so far, Fallen Hero, is a linear storyline. The difference for that game, and many others (looking at you Hero Rise and Versus), is that there is actual impact on the story direction or that the choices are truly meaningful. None of the given choices begetting the answer: “You’re the real one aren’t you?” “Tell them how I’ve figured out their plan” Literally “You know the answer”. The real different guys here are stories like Choice of Magic and Choice of Robots. So many hidden goodies and outcomes and real changes to the storyline. Yes there is an overall outline but that is needed for a cohesive story. The more I have to go to my stats page and look at my choices to see which ones pass/fail the more I’m just reading a novel and the less impact I feel like I have on the outcome. In terms of true interactive fiction I feel that a lot of the recent titles fall short. I don’t want to call them out because that’s not what this is about. This is cry out in hopes that I can find another game/story I can read over and over again to find new and interesting outcomes. Thank you for reading this.