The Current Issue with CoG Titles


Not to derail the thread, but with some older titles I have seen it that people are surprised if someone voices criticism.
In the “omg i thought I was the only one who thought that”


It doesn’t even seem to be “real” multiple branches more that the epilogue it slightly varied. I am trying not to call certain games out because I don’t want to make this into a bash fest and I understand that it hurts my argument to be veage but I see no other way to carry this out and am choosing the lesser of 2 evils. I agree that this is in fact my individual perspective and the point of this thread is to varify agreement.
To be to the point: -Overreaching without meaningful outcome that was in the players control
-Pass/fail prevailance that took away from interesting choices
-Linear storyline that prevented interactivity based on choices
-Spelled out “best answers” without effort or involvement of the players
-Strange direction without rhyme or reason that were in no way coinciding with player choices i.e. more based on what the author dictated must happen
Thank you for showing me that I was not specific enough in my denouncing and I hope that helps to clear things up.

The Hero Project: Open Season — Can you win America’s #1 reality show for heroes?

Can we get the staff’s permission to use Open Season as example? We’ll stay civil.


On this point. I will use specific titles if it helps and I will be civil. I’m trying to make a point of the current state of some of these titles but I don’t want to seem like I’m directed or venting on a certain game and be “that guy”.


Please discuss specific constructive criticism on the thread for that game. I don’t think it’s going to be useful to offer vague critiques yoking together a dozen very different games.


Would it be okay to list the specific bits on the thread and link back here?


Understood, this was an overall feeling based on what I have recently played this year but I should probably go directly to the source. I will say in my defense that the games that fall under my criticism for the year are the norm and not the exceptions.


Totally reasonable, and I understand the desire to consider the games’ overall qualities and some changes in style and structure. There are really good threads about word count/length and branchiness, though, and I would love to see you continue that conversation there for those elements, for example. Essentially, although I know you just want to get a totally constructive conversation going, I know from experience that this thread will turn into something not useful, so let’s break this (very good) conversation up into smaller, more arguable/digestable chunks if we can. At least, that’s my sense of how to get as much good as we can out of this.

I agree that CS games are changing, but I think the most fruitful conversation can be had if we delve into specifics, and the place for that is probably on the game threads, where it will receive the maximum number of eyes and a lot of context.


Ahhh… thanks my friend, i understand now with yours and @MeltingPenguins’s explanation :slight_smile:

Ummmm… just like my previous comment , sometimes it is hard to really cover everything within a game, especially the criterias you mention are the toughest of them all…

I am not sure whether i am accurate, but personally i think the only game that really can cover most , if not all your criterias listed was “Tin Star” , where based on reader’s choice of action/interactive… MC could be the Saintest hollier than thou epic hero to the extend of the most evil sinister being in the universe … even with this strength on board, there was still complains from casual readers about it being too “deep” and difficult to play , but without in dept explanation and stat system, it won’t possess that aura of realism… :slight_smile:

So … i hope in the end, you will accept that while some games may have certain short coming which you dislike, but you will find other joy or strength within that game for you to like :slight_smile:


I did like Tin Star and it’s branching, whether it was to the Native American village or the mechanization of the town or the overall gunslinger or gambler of the character. I’m with you that that that is a very branching and solid game. I suppose my main gripe is with what these games are supposed to be. A game where you as a player have an actual overall impact on the overall story. I will take my criticism elsewhere because I understand that such a loose topic does not adhere to good conversation but this was more to feel out if any others in the community felt the same and to perhaps shead some light on the players perspective.


In my view, it’s best to give constructive feedback on each individual title in their own thread or a review system from where you bought the game because this will help deliver to the author which specifics are of concern.

From what I understand, CoG have their own rules in placed when you are going to be published under their title. We cannot compare Tin Star due to this title being a Hosted Game, which has different set of rules.


ok so this is just me rambling…

but while I agree that certain games should strive to be like that game or that other games , cose it had more branching…satisfying ending…more deep this or that .

I also think this could be a slippery slope . Let me explain : first of all , don’t forget that writing is a pain in the ass kinda of hobbie . Second don’t forget also that everyone skill at telling story is different . I’ve read enough fanfic and books that you can see the difference between them . Some will suck you in a story so fast and god make you want more…you wish it never end . And some don’t , they are good but don’t leave that kind of impact .

Third don’t forget that some of these peoples who write these stories ? they are doing it for the 1st time . We aren’t talking about some Pro who has been at it for years and years and years . This isn’t cdprojekt or BW or Besetha , where you expect nothing from them but exellent stuff and you are entitled to be butthurt for years cose they didn’t deliver .

and last , like I said…while its a good thing to say ‘I wish that story had more branching and such’ , its realy GOOD to strive to be better to get better . But never push hard enough that the work of passion become just work which would become a chore .

Like @Resuri08 said , the authors are open to opinions and i would direct such a things to them . This place is more then a forum for WIP and such…everyone is learning every day .

like I said…rambling :sweat_smile:


@Hylum I think one of the things that would help this discussion is talking about how much change you’re looking for. If I may make a simple analogy…

“There’s water in the glass.”
(Ok, but how much water? Does a single drop count, or should it be at least 1/10 or some other fraction?)

“Player choices should change the story.”
(Ok, but how much should they change the story?)

If we define how transformative change should be before it’s acceptable, I think this would vault the conversation forward.


A while back we talked about story-points.
I think what hylum means (correct me if wrong) is that if a choice promises a branch, it should deliver on it. And not do the same thing three times with different npcs filling in the blanks. Or even tell the player over and over that they thought about doing what they picked but then decided to do X instead because the plot demands it.
Now, the latter can work, but mostly in small doses.

Likewise that if a game gives three choices and the wording makes it seem as if not only will only one of them even work, but looks as if you are getting punished for not having played the game a specific way up to that point.


I certainly don’t think that’s true of all of the titles, but basically you can blame games that get butchered in the store reviews for short playthoughs compared to the total wordcount for that one (It’s happened more than once, so authors stop writing them.) It’s been brought up many times before, and the short version is most people have indicated they’d much prefer length over breadth. (I like increased replayability myself, but I’m certainly not in the majority on that one.) It’s impossible to have a highly branching game that doesn’t sacrifice length for breadth, and the only other option is to write something huge that will probably still get complaints over length because that 500k story is no where near 500k on a single playthrough. When writing longer games like that, there’s also increasing demands on the author’s time to complete it (I could write three 50k games MUCH faster than a single 150K one, it’s not a 1:1 ratio) which is particularly significant for newer authors and those with time constraints.

That’s the choice you need to make when writing them, and why many games are leaning more and more towards personalised stories with a split and return format (so there’s a main storyline with different scenes or interactions and then only completely different branching closer to the end,) rather than highly branching games that split off in all directions early and each playthrough is nothing like the other.


This seems pretty clearly to belong to Word count vs branching, so I would direct you over to there to continue this conversation, and continue the conversation about specific games in their respective threads.