What Writing Trend do you want to see in 2020?

I honestly would like to see more space games lol, I’m a huge fan of Mass Effect and something like that would have me absolutely hooked. Also big robots. I really liked Mecha Ace, I played it a few times to see all the different endings but I wish it had more story to it.

I’ve read quite a few WIPs and I really love the ones that stray from the norm, The Passenger is a really good example of a completely unique story that hasn’t been over done :slight_smile:


How about less stereotype ROs?
It would be refreshing to play witout understanding these characters after the second time meeting them.
That aside, a writing about 1800s period and how our character need to struggle under social rules and expectations would be interesting.
And I would love it if in a story we get a pet although only if they are given time to shine like a character.


Quality, not quantity. Stories that trust themselves to just have a small number of characters and develop them deeply. Stories that doesn’t try to please everyone (you can’t). MC’s that have a voice, dialog and a story to tell. Mc’s that doesn’t feel like the least interesting character in the game.


I think there are only two games out of the 100+ CoG/HGs which handled many ROs (around 10 or more) perfectly: Keeper of the Sun and Moon and Creme de la Creme, so kudos to both @daydreamsincolor and @HannahPS it’s awesome what they did.
(Jim did a not bad job in ZE:SH too, but in his game some ROs suffered from not having enough screen time.)

So I guess these numbers just show how hard it must be for an author to juggle all those ROs and other NPCs giving all a believable personality and of course writing a decent plot, world building and an interesting MC too.


I don’t know about radical they’re both still people but @ThomB currently still, imho, has the gold standard in making a gender choice character Dandy/Daisy feel suitably different depending on whether they’re male or female despite sharing the same basic personality and motivations it manifests a bit different for both.

I’d be totally up for seeing other gender-choice characters as well done and differentiated as that in this decade.


I believe that many people, not just in this community but in Western societies as a whole, are under this illusion.

To be successful in that time period, most non-male and non-white (in U.S.) people had to turn to activities outside of the “norm.” … as a woman on the frontier, for example, most of the opportunity was within the sex field or being married.

Even “piranha” women were proposed to almost immediately upon arrival in the West frontier and those with a history of murder, mayhem and even cannibalism found second or third husbands to “start over with” …

Those women involved in the arts, such as ballerinas, were often seen as prostitutes by society as a whole, people assuming that they were involved in such, even if they weren’t. Ballerinas, for example, often had their mothers act as their agents and their goals were to find matches for a husband or “sponsor” (pimp) …

People in modern society do not really understand that writing a realistic experience of the Victorian era is an extremely hard thing to do in a satisfactory way because things are so much better now. Medicine, food, work and nearly every aspect of life would incompatible to a modern person.

With all that said, keep your eye out :wink:


I wonder though, if there’s so much work going into differentiation, would it be more efficient to make a whole new character? I don’t think there’s a right or wrong answer (and I’m not familiar with Dandy/Daisy) but if writing I’d personally rather spend the same amount of time making a new one.

I’m not sure where I sit in terms of playing. My instinct is that I’d rather they be undifferentiated unless the game / setting is saying something about gender or sexuality, though I understand that a lot of people feel otherwise.

@Cari-san that’s really kind, thank you :slight_smile:

I’m looking forward to seeing more Heart’s Choice games and seeing what love interests emerge! I’d love to play dark fantasy games this year. Maybe romancing some sad liars or flighty charlatans. There are also a ton of games I haven’t got round to yet :sob: I’m especially looking forward to the gorgeous writing of An Odyssey and hope to see more beautiful, assured prose this year.


I do often wonder if a lot of writers have a specific gender in their head when writing a gender selective character, or at least I would assume it to be difficult to overcome since it’s a practice quite exclusive to interactive fiction? :thinking: So sometimes I find a support character that is a defined gender better, even if that can also risk a lack of options for romance by locking off gender selection? It probably depends on the writers and game.


I can not speak for others, but I design each of my characters from the very beginning with the gender and preference made – if I write a gender flippable character, I plan that character to be that from the beginning.


I have the same process as @Eiwynn mentions above, if a character is flippable that’s just how they are to me. I haven’t had a gender in my head when writing swapped characters (or really when writing any character) but noticed someone saying that they felt female!Rosario didn’t feel female enough. What that means I have no idea but, well, who knows.

I know a non binary character in Sunless Sea had a lot of feedback about “seeming too masculine” … and an equal amount about “seeming too feminine”. One can read that however one likes.


:astonished: Heretic! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: Honestly you and Fayl really should try the Evertree Saga sometime, it’s great imho.


Well I can say that all your ROs in Blanche worked fine for me as female characters! :grin:

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I’m outrageously behind, I had to restart Silverworld over the holidays because I started it so long ago and had forgotten what I’d done :sob:

@derekmetaltron thank you! :slightly_smiling_face:

I do hope there are some more fantasy of manners type games like Weyrwood. I enjoyed that a lot and the mingled high stakes plus complicated social mores are just my jam. That Desire and Decorum Heart’s Choice game looks great.


I think what I’d like to see more is being able to be some kinda ruler (lord/lady, king/queen, emperor/empress… etc.), like in War of the West. In that game the MC was the ruler of their province thorough the entire game and not just re/claiming the position along the way. And also it needs to be emphasized the game allowed me to play a female MC. Honestly it’s so annoying that often those kinda games dismiss the idea of a woman being in such position bc it’s historically “inaccurate” or whatever… Seriously? What about all the queens throughout history?


More villain protagonists.


Maybe you’ll like Darkner’s New Atlantis, assuming he ever resumes it where the female mc may have it comparatively easier as, if not a ruler, then the (figure)head of state.

It won’t be the Myrmidon we know but maybe @Moreau will return and work it into a less ambitious story that is more manageable.


Oh, thanks for the recommendation. I loved Darkner’s other wip Atheina so I’m definitely gonna check out this one too. :slight_smile:
Tho when it comes to wips I’m always worried about the wip I come to really enjoy reading ending up like The Myrmidon :disappointed_relieved: :broken_heart: (I still wish that one would return as an active wip.)

Edit: Tho seeing all of Darkners wips locked… Bad sign… :frowning:

Edit 2:

That’s some ray of hope. :slight_smile: Maybe we’d enjoy the new version too, if that happens.


That one… I really wanted to enjoy it. I mean that game has so many stuff I like in it: Fantasy setting in a 19th centuriish world, magic, fancy aristo people and their schemes in which MC also has to take part (it kinda feels like playing chess, I have to outsmart other people), but it was so hard to understand the choices here and there that when I had to look up words or expressions like every second page I just gave up.


I want more romance based game. Only a few writers can actually pull this right now.


Also agreeing with more MCs that feel like actual characters in the story. When they’re so customizable that all the choices become cosmetic, I personally feel that the story and interactions severely suffer. Usually the driving force behind a story is the protagonist’s growth (or ungrowth) revolving around an unresolved personal flaw, explored through the vehicle of the plot events, so when they’re too blank slate the story then feels like it becomes about the situation they’re placed into instead.

I’d love to see more that strike a balance between being so defined that they feel like somebody else’s character that you’re just guiding, and so pliable that they’re just a prop in the background. One of the best examples I’ve seen is the Mc of The Passenger. They have a few core traits that come from their circumstances, but you also get to decide how they feel about them and whether they start to warm up or reject them, and then some of the more important fundamentals of their personality which are used in character interactions. It makes you feel that connection and I so absolutely love it.

I’d love to see more non-player characters that feel like they weren’t simply made for the main character, but rather could exist as the protagonist of their own story.

And as always, more developed relationships. Not just romantic, but exploring how deeply complicated people are and have them have wounds and flaws that surface as they do, and making mistakes that sometimes they don’t apologize for, and having different views and motivations, and relationships that stumble and grow. Make ‘em real and make me suffer. (But also those moments that are so unique to them and so happy.)