Welcome to Starling (WIP) (60k-ish) -- Patreon Link included!

We’re pleased to inform you that you’ve been accepted to Ohio’s Starling University, the Ivy League of the Midwest!

Growing up poor in your small town, you always swore you’d make your way out. But getting accepted to the Starling University? Right out of High School? Even with a plan to afford the first year’s tuition, it’s going to be a real culture shock. But as long as everything goes as it should, that’s a problem for another year. Not a spoiler: Everything does not go as it should.

AUTHOR NOTES

Come one, come all, experience my most recent thinly-veiled anti-capitalist diatribe!

This is the first time I’ve posted a WIP without at least someone else looking it over first. I’ve done my best to edit and ensure it passes tests (unlike the MC, potentially) but content-wise… who knows! This is more an alpha than anything and I’d like to gauge interest. I wrote everything here over the course of 3 fever-dream weeks last month and finished cleaning it up enough to present.

Is this interesting? Is it good? Should I continue work on this for a potential HG, or should I throw it in the trash and write about vampires? Please let me know your thoughts! I crave validation!

Content: minor violence, some profanity (characters say the F-word on occasion).

Stats page doesn’t break the game, but there isn’t much there yet. I have a lot on the roadmap but kind of wanted to get some reactions and see if this is fun or enjoyable at all first. I welcome your questions and comments! Here is the link!

And here’s the link to my Patreon, which is where I’m looking for feedback on this story and others–but don’t worry if you’re not into that, I’ll continue to post all updates here :]

99 Likes

I love this wip, it’s exactly what i want in a wip good job it has potential.

2 Likes

Sounds like an interesting Premise To a Story
I’d Have To See Part 1 of the Demo and Possible Ro’s if their Included in the story
I love me some vampires alot but I don’t see many university stories that are my cup of tea if you think it’s a really good one I’d be glad to read it :slight_smile:
but yes I would love to read a story about getting into University.
Questions I have are:
When and if we see the game can we choose some certain backstory how our characters act/ their relationship with their parents?
Any siblings older or younger?

Are we getting a childhood friend or multiple and could they be possible Love interest in the story?
How many Love interests if there is any?Male Or Female?

How detailed are The options for making our character aka hair colors, glasses, skin color, age?

Seems like money would be an issue how would we resolve that in the story? Theft? Jobs? work for the university? Or something more detailed that you’ve thought up?

The stories I enjoy reading are the ones where you are Poor but will other characters comment slang on how the character acts and dresses because in Harry Potter his friend is insulted for his hand me down poor quality of his clothes.
Poor quality of their school equipment?

Any conflict in the story? The person who causes conflict makes the main characters life a misery
Or causes harm to those around them I’d like to know more about this character if they are introduced and more problems our main character would have.

What time frame is it in? It says Midwest but giving the time zone in which the story takes place helps alot
For example 1800s or 1700s etc to let the reader know what the laws could possibly be during that time frame for example if people use horses or cars.
And more laws like tax laws and laws on murder, theft

If you have settings I’d work on them and the story first then go back to work on detailing how most characters would look it’s the same as writing a comic book or novel. Most Curators on here focus on story and go back to make customization more detailed aka skin color or hair
Inputting saves helps a ton

Those are just my questions
For now sense I haven’t read anything
Whether you make vampires or university I’ll read it in a heartbeat.
P.s English isn’t my first language so I apologize if there’s no periods or alot of Etc
Looking forward to it
Yours Truly Ambrose

5 Likes

I thought it this would be just a chill, not too serious slice-of-life, but oh was I wrong.

I don’t really feel hooked from the first chapter. Not much gave me a reason to keep reading. Maybe add a personal reason why MC wants to get out of town? Even just a choice for a fresh start, or to give back to their community, or because they were just so goddamn sick of their deadbeat town.

Chapter 4, Chapter 9 and Chapter 12 start midway or near the end of a previous scene, like so. Is it meant to be like this?


The game tries to convince you to join a sorority like 4 times. I think just two would be enough, maximum three; an initial offer and a confirmation. I already said no twice, so why would I even be tempted for a third time?

Some bugs that don't print their variables properly.

“So,” $[roommatename] says as you walk. “First day of college for you. First day for me too, I guess, though ball practice makes me feel like I’ve already started the semester.”

“Hey,” $[roommatename] says as the two of you get back into your room. “Even if you’re not doing four years here right now, I’m really glad we got placed together. And we’ve got the rest of this semester no matter what.”


After Alisha confirmed that she was a top basketball player, it says that she played for the men’s team. Is this intentional? Does basketball work like that? A couch potato like me wouldn’t know.

Really big wall of hard-to-read text incoming!

He clears his throat as he returns to the front of the room. “Unfortunately, many of my colleagues have leaned into the lackadaisacal attitude many students have toward the first day of class and refuse to teach anything—simply introducing themselves and dismissing the class. However… what is the point? You have all come here, ostensibly, to learn something. Even if it is simply to pass a test in this class. Perhaps the usefulness of this data in the real world is suspect, but that is a question for the brighter minds of our time to ponder. Not elderly professors who appear to be constantly at risk of crumbling into a pile of dust. All this to say: I would like to make the first day of class useful for those who chose to attend, while not punishing those who have been coddled by my colleagues. That is the reason for your little ‘cheat codes’. I would now like to begin a lecture on the material itself. We have managed to burn a significant fraction of our scheduled time so far, leaving me only twenty minutes to utilize.”

Found when I played as the last program option, by the way. The one with the sciences.


Shortly after the envelope of money is slid under our door and Alisha comes back, someone knocked on the door and it’s AJ. The text only mentions AJ standing at the door, but a little later it mentions someone named Sherman. I don’t recall ever meeting this guy so… Who?

The game also treated me like I took some money or hid the envelope, which I didn’t – I did open it and count it, but I left the envelope on Alisha’s table.

All in all, it’s not my cup of tea, but if you really like and believe in this story then I wish you all the best in writing :slight_smile:

4 Likes

Awesome feedback – i agree, it needs more of a hook at the beginning.

Nope! should have arranged the pagebreaks better.

That’s definitely not supposed to happen – it should have a check in there… hmm!

Yep, i’ll fix this.

Occasionally! :slight_smile:

I’ll see about touching this scene up, i feel like something probably points to the wrong label.

Thank you so much for taking the time!! I’m not sure if I’ll be sticking with it either, I really wanted to get some opinions and make sure I hadn’t accidentally written War and Peace or something before i scrapped it. :slight_smile:

4 Likes

Well, in my university there is something called social service where you carry out the studies of your career I received a free scholarship to pay for your studies





Here are some things to note: repeating scenes when meeting Marissa (showing scenes for two different choices simultaneously); Roommate’s name not showing as it should, repeating scene when receiving money from AJ (dialogue is the same when receiving $2000 and after receiving $2000 more, I wonder if it should be like that by default)

1 Like

I found these two errors


At the end of the story it keeps looping.

Hey @SpokesWriter …lot of routes are just jumbled up…
For example…


I didn’t chose to go to the poker game and yet it makes it seem like somehow MC mobile and wallet were returned… But they never got robbed in the first place.

Okay first I had like three different scenes of my roommate giving me the money they got for point shaving. Something I explicitly told them not to do I might add.

But then the scene where the guy goes to our dormroom loops over and over and over again.

These kinda things happened many times too @SpokesWriter, like the short Porsche person returning back MCs robbed things despite not going to the poker game, roommate giving money many times… Some routes are jumbled up and some are repeated but in different ways.


Thanks for the feedback, everybody! I’m working on an update now, but kind of wanted to take the temperature:

Would you like to see more of “Welcome to Starling”? (as opposed to a new story)

  • Yes! Fix your bugs and keep writing this!
  • No, write something else!

0 voters

2 Likes

Wow! thanks for the response! I… didn’t think there was that much interest! I’ll fix the bugs and post a new version here once everything flows correctly.

I’d also like to announce that I’ve started a Patreon! Don’t worry, everything I write in ChoiceScript that’s received some sort of editing process will still be posted here and potentially submitted through HG, I won’t be posting any exclusive CS stuff (aside from very early alphas for feedback). However, I’ll be posting regular updates of what I’m working on (for free!), along with behind-the-scenes outlines/flowcharts/character bios/polls and interactive fiction I write in other formats, along with some benefits for folks who want to subscribe to a higher tier and throw some money at me. I’ve filled it out a little bit, take a look!

4 Likes