What do you want more of in IF-games?

Romances where sex is optional. It’s not just IF but too many games assume you’re down for that stuff just bc you’re interested in the romance.


Hmm. I don’t like killing off my characters lightly (at least not permanently… I do have one who came back wrong. Which in turn makes him notoriously hard to kill, which… some villains may find out to their horror), ROs or not, but having them hurt (and potentially, consequentially very angry and leave for the rest of the game) due to the MC’s actions is definitely something that I’m plotting… would that count?


It’s just “things that I would like to see more often (when genre-appropriate)” not “hard and fast rules for game and character development”. You do what’s best for your game :slight_smile: .

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Didn’t mean it that way :sweat_smile: I was just kinda curious if that would be close enough to be interesting.

Some elaboration because I just can't resist doing a full-blown villain rant

Although in this case, I’m not sure if it even would be genre appropriate to have an “anyone can die” situation - although there are untold monstrosities prowling about, and weird cults summoning them, when push comes to shove, most of the people there, especially named ones, actually try to prevent others from getting killed (unnamed ones can be another story, like the aforementiomed cults). Yes, even most of the villains. Their villainous goals rarely are more villainous than getting rich (which usually, while it can be amoral, doesn’t involve murder). Or to sue some jerk hero who tried to get them killed.

…okay, there’s a contradiction there.

Well, some (most?) of the villains don’t mind killing in self defence (if they’re attacked by, say, a black ops unit intent on killing them), and Vortex (the aforementiomed one who came back wrong) definitely isn’t above burning down settlements who are practicing human sacrifice (and he’s the one that actually might bring forth the end of the world - again - if he wanted to; luckily for everyone he’s intent on doing the opposite), but most of the more dangerous ones would be perfectly content to disappear into obscurity and never hurt anyone ever again, if armed military (and hero) units would just… leave them alone and stop trying to kill them.

Of course, Void actually went full “destroyer of worlds” for a while. (He also was the only one who got stabbed in the back by his only friend. Or at least it looked that way.) He got better though.

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@Nemureru_Mori @HannahPS
OFNA: Birds of a Feather you can potentially have a rivalmance with Natasha, Elliot, and Jeremy (or something close to one).

Deadend: Gilded Chronicles kinda will have something similar with the corruption/empathy stats it’s going for. Though still too early to really say.

And while they’re not CoG/HG;

The Superstition series from 13Leagues on itch.io features rivalmances with all of the ROs. Throne of Ashes by the same author also features something kinda similar in Ruben’s route (which is the only complete route so far).

And The Bastard of Camelot by Llamagirl while I don’t think will have a full-blown rivalmance you can be stubborn/combative with the ROs while pursuing them.

But’s that’s all of the one’s I can think of that have it or something kinda close…


Thank you for the recommendations, I’m going to check them out later! I’ve heard so many things about Superstition, it must be really good, a lot of people seem to like it.

Actually, I just realized something: The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes WIP also has a system similar to friendmance/rivalmance. OMG, how could I forget about it, I literally mentioned this game myself in this thread earlier :person_facepalming:
We can’t really see how different versions of the same romance would feel just yet, because there are only three chapters for now and we still haven’t met two ROs, but the writer Doriana-Gray posted a mini romance guide on the tumblr, which explains how romance will work. Basically, you collect romance points and friendship points, and depending on their combinations, you can have a different type of relationships with RO - love, crush, bickering-love, etc.

If anyone’s interested, here’s the link for tumblr post


A “legend” system (might be a different name, apologies if I got it wrong) like in Tin Star, where little things you do throughout the game all build up in the epilogue, where the fates of almost every minor and major character are all recounted. The ability to impact the lives of almost every character we meet was really cool.


Your game premise sounds interesting :slight_smile: .

Like I said, it’s not a hard and fast rule. Many of personal top 10 (and a certain submitted game that will almost certainly successfully challenge for a spot on my list) give the ROs plot immunity.

This made me wonder how much disconnect there was between what is said vs. done. Mining data on what plotlines were actually played & finished could be helpful.

I’d love a game with a “Lost” setting, where you’re stranded on an island and have to survive and build a community, maybe even Lord of the flies-esque power dynamics and rivalries.

Or one where it’s just you and another person, so all the characterization-juice and screentime goes into that one other character aside from the MC. Are there any full-size games out there like that? Where it’s just two people?

Another scenario I’d like to see: A dungeon or prison setting.


Apropos of a similar conversation in the Fallen Hero chat, many games pull their punches with difficult/upsetting/extreme content or skirt around it as if to be seen as condoning it. It’s as if people forget the “fiction” half of “interactive fiction”. I’d like to see more authors handle dark material and not worry too much beyond content warnings at the start if they want. Some authors go this route to varying degrees of success, but I applaud them all for hewing that path.

As noted, these thoughts stem from my praising Fallen Hero, which lets you do some fairly dark stuff at least compared to the vast majority of Choicescript games. The author simply tells the story, and lets the player work within that world. It doesn’t condone or condemn, it follows the journey and lets the player decide how they feel from both a player perspective and role playing the main character, recognizing that one is not absolutely the other. That is IF at its most potent.

That’s not to say every work needs to be Game of Thrones. There’s room for everything from that to Willow to Narnia to Lord of the Rings to The Black Company to Earthsea, and the current existing CoG/HG slate proves that. I’d just like to see more authors diving into those deeper, darker waters and see where those dives take the format, and how others might follow them and discover new IF possibilities.


that’s my project actually :pleading_face:


Cool! Is there a WIP yet?

oh no, it’s just 2k words in. but the plot work is mostly done (in my head) :flushed:


I would love this (and will keep an eye out for @rosies to put up a WIP!). I think the only issue is that there would be loads of complaints that there was only one character to interact with if people didn’t like the character, which means the author would either make them so bland that they’d be boring or they’d have to cement a personality and deal with people whining over it.

Still, I’d love to play it. Same with the “Lost” type scenario. That would be fun.

I have a weird idea for a game that I’m not sure how it’d go over… I ditched my original idea and decided to write it as a book (too complicated for a game and I was too unwilling to change the NPCs to suit anyone, lol) and came up with this one, but it may piss off even more people, so who knows…


Yes, that would be a big issue. I was only able to come up with one example of a game like that (WIP though) in the meantime and that would be “Seven days in purgatory”, and ironically I have the exact issue you described there. I HATE the husband. I know he is intended to be sus, but he isn’t sus in the fun way. There is no universe, no pre-amnesia state of mind in which my MC would have married him. And even if the marriage aspect itself was a lie, and the guy some crazy stalker or whatnot - he’s just awful (well-written, though).

I was thinking for a moment whether it would make sense to make that one RO/NPC highly customizable including personality, like the heir in the Odessa Dating Games, but that would technically defy the purpose, because no matter if they shared the same name, in reality you would have multiple characters again, only presented in one mold.

It would probably have to be a passion project out of love, because I can’t see a game like that selling well. :confused:

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Originally with Surgit, I wanted to make it so there was only the child the immortal takes in but I could only imagine the backlash, plus I think writing a few romance options could be fun. It’s honestly kind of hard to figure where to fit them in though considering the intent for it to be mainly about the child and the relationship the immortal forms with them. Probably people they meet through caring for the child.

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Yep, I checked out the demo and didn’t like him at all. I don’t self-insert, but I have to have an MC I can relate to, and I just couldn’t come up with one that I wanted to play that would’ve actually married that guy. I’m forced to write for characters that I don’t like unless I’m writing their POVs, so I don’t want to do that for a game I play in my spare time!

So, yeah, customization is the only way you could please everyone and, like you said, you’d actually be writing multiple character again. Plus, I don’t want to have to customize so much about NPCs. A few things here or there is fine, but if I’m micro-managing the NPCs, I may as well write the damned thing myself.

One thing I’ve thought about, especially since Sera seems to have opened the door for otomes in IF, is that maybe there could be a demo set up where there are multiple ROs to choose from (not too many or it’d take too long) then have a separate “book” for each path. Kind of like sonnet009 did with the Wilder series (only a bit more fleshed out). So it’s the same story, but you approach it from different ways, depending on which RO (or teammate, if you want to go no romance) you choose. The other NPCs may still be involved, just to a lesser degree, and it really would be the MC and that NPC against the world, for the most part. In one path, you solve whatever problems there are in one way, in another, you approach it from another way. Still loads of choices, but more centered on the MC and their chosen partner for the story.

I don’t know, just tossing ideas out.


Mess. I want more opportunities to play a messy MC. Not outright evil or without any morals at all, just a complicated, ambivalent mess of a person.

For example, I’m currently playing “It Lives Within”, a fan-made continuation of the It Lives series from Choices, in which I’m two-timing a father and a son (earning me a very fitting “Am I The Drama?” achievement). The father is a walking red flag in itself, knows about the two-timing but was like “Welp, I’ve always been a shit father and you’re irresistible”. The son, however, just opened up to the MC and will be utterly heartbroken once he learns how his lover has slept with his father whom he hates with a passion. (The game is still a WIP, so I don’t know what the fallout will look like but damn, I’m already at the edge of my seat with every new update.)

In the same playthrough, my MC also managed to push someone already in a committed relationship into the arms of the ghost of their childhood friend who previously tried killing them. Do you notice a pattern? Great life choices all around.

Usually, I settle for the paragon characters (and sometimes try out a ruthless renegade playthrough for variety) but I must admit that I enjoy a good mess if it is set up well, even if the MC becomes a major asshole. The thing is, in the example above, I play the character as mostly well-intentioned as there are opportunities to acknowledge the MC’s guilt or lack of it. He has feelings for both men, but dang, he’s simply not the best at making good life decisions at the moment considering that he’s in the middle of a major canonical identity crisis. Do I feel for the poor bastard? Yeah. Am I already gleefully anticipating his fall from grace and all the resulting chaos? Oh yesss.


Posting again because i thought of another thing that id like to see more of in IF. Allow us to pursue RO’s based on emotional attraction with the physical attraction coming after or as a result of it rather then the reverse which is more often then not the case(at least initially).