Are there any websites or tools to help me visualize my story choices so far? Like a branching diagram or something?
Check out these threads:
- Help with organizing a story
- How do you keep track of your choices & branches?
- Tools to branch your game?
- Apps for writing route branches?
Here’s COG’s own take on branching, which includes a diagram, though not an app or whatever where you can input your own stuff
My personal preference is spreadsheets
So, so many spreadsheets.
Awesome, thank you. I’ve been using old fashioned pen and paper.
Honestly, that’s exactly what I do. Mouse and keyboard planning just doesn’t do it for me. I don’t want to fiddle around with some program, I want to make a box with an arrow sticking out of it that transforms into a house that a stick person is living in. I could mess around for 10 minutes trying to make it look nice on a computer program or I could just doodle it in 4 seconds.
That worked well at first but now there are so many choices going off in different directions its hard to keep up with everything and my writing can only get so small.
When that happens to me, I evaluate whether or not the complexity is justified.
I dig that, but I’ve got 3 different “playable” characters with different story lines and recruit-able companions. The complexity is kind of a selling point as most of the choices matter in different ways and will influence different endings or expand lore.
Try Twine’s organiser. It’s simple and fast and it infinitely scrolls. It’s attached to another IF engine, however.
This is unrelated to the discussion, but your WIP’s unique selling point isn’t its complexity, it’s the fact that it’s presented in character on the forum.
You could also try programming/project management tool, like ornigrams, they are able to visualize choices in a minimal way, I think they are quite helpful.
I will Post a Link later for a free Basic Programm for that, it does Not feature Long text so it’s really just a Diagramm to keep in Tracks and avoid loose ends
Awesome, thanks. Sviyagin linked me to GBAT, is it similar to what you’re talking about?
On the Desktop I use StarUML, Umlet or ClickChart, for the phone or tablet there are Apps like HandyUML free(obviously German) or Flowdia Diagramm demo that seem similar
I haven’t used twine in a while so I’m sure it’s changed at least a little bit I remember it being pretty quick and intuitive for planning purposes.
I tried lucidchart for a while. Works for phone and desktop and it’s free.
That said, I’m gonna second @will because at the end of the day, my time gets sucked up just trying to put things like that together and having pen and paper for each scene and important variables listed to the side is just way, way quicker.
Coggle works pretty well, the only thing I really don’t like about it is that in the free version all of your charts are publicly viewable.
Talk about ‘spoiler alerts’!
Your English is better than most Americans. I didn’t realize you were German until you said “obviously German”. StarUML looks interesting.
I can’t imagine editing on a phone, You are far braver than I.
I dont think my ADHD can handle the text without barriers. Thanks though!
My problem may lie in coding. I feel like I’m using roundabout ways to go about things. Like there are shorter snippets of code that would eliminate dozens of pages. But this is the first time I’ve ever tried coding so I have SO MUCH story written but I’m lagging behind due to my ignorance of code.
I’m learning too. Drop me a line if there’s anything in particular I might be able to help you with
I get that. I think everybody goes through that learning curve unless they come in with a pretty good foundation in coding. And you can always do revisions in your code later, just like in your prose. But if it’s really slowing you down on that first draft, it might be a good idea to do them one at a time (ish).
So you could write a code “skeleton” that would look something like:
*label scene1 *comment summary of scene here *choice #A *goto scene1a #B *goto scene1b #C *goto scene1c *label scene1a *comment summary
And then once your skeleton is done (maybe chapter by chapter, not the whole thing) you go back and fill in the narrative and adjust as needed. Like an outline, but a literal working one.
Alternatively, you could do the opposite: write all your narrative first, then deposit it piece by piece into your actual game files, creating the code as you go. If you do it this way, I recommend writing your variables in all caps so that you can find them easily and don’t miss as many.
“CharacterA thinks SHE IS the best bounty hunter in the galaxy and SHE’S heard about your bounty. It’s a good thing you’re a very skilled MARKSMAN.”
But those are just ideas. Some people find them helpful and some just don’t and some get used to writing and coding together pretty quickly or think they should make a point of trying to get used to it.
As my story grows I find myself adding more “if / elseif / else” statements. The disorganization is killing me and the more I dive into choicescript, the more I realize how MUCH there is to it.
I really like the idea of writing it all first and variables in caps. I dont know why I didn’t think of that. I might just get too excited to start. And again the organization problem arises. I probably fall into the last category of people who think they should make a point of trying to get used to it.