Slides and source from Game Dev for Everyone: Modern Interactive Fiction

pride flagThe LGBTQ gaming convention GaymerX was this weekend in San Francisco, and I had a wonderful time! This was my first convention on the west coast, and I finally got to meet Dan Fabulich (Choice of Games), plus Tanya DePass (#INeedDiverseGames), Mark Barlet (AbleGamers), Anita Sarkeesian (Feminist Frequency), and too many other Twitter friends and role models to mention, to say nothing of new friends. (Hi everyone!)

I also went to panels – a lot of panels! – and took notes. I’ll be putting those up over the course of the week.

I could not be happier with my decision to go, and I’m now 98% sure that I’ll follow it up by attending GaymerX East next month (NYC, November 12 & 13). More info on that later.

With that said, guess who had a spectacular technical failure? I was presenting Saturday on a topic dear to my heart – modern interactive fiction tools for beginning game devs – and giving a rapid overview of Twine, ChoiceScript, Ren’Py, and Inform 7. I wanted to show the differences between how the systems are used from both practical and stylistic standpoints, so I wrote the intro to a small game and then executed it in all four systems….

…and the projector didn’t work with my new laptop. Which caused a graphics driver crash. Fun times! And because so much of it depended on installed programs, scouting for an emergency laptop just wouldn’t have sufficed. The show must go on, so I winged it, but I promised to put all my materials online afterward. Here goes.

Presentation slides (PDF)

Twitter thread with many useful links

Bundled source code

To view the source code:

  • Twine: Open the Twine source file with Twine 2. (Many people do prefer Twine 1.4, but I built the example with Twine 2, and it won’t open with 1.4.)
  • ChoiceScript: Open these files with a text editor (I personally like Notepad++).
  • Ren’Py: Open the script file with a text editor. If you would like to compile it instead, download Ren’Py, create a new project, and copy all of these files into the game folder of the new project.
  • Inform 7: Open the file with a text editor. If you would like to compile it instead, download Inform 7, create a new project, and copy all text from the file into the source view.

To see the game run in its various forms:

To get the various engines:

This isn’t directly related to my talk, but if you want to play an extraordinarily gay (but rated E for everyone!)  parser game, I created “Rainbows and Dance Parties” to celebrate Obergefell v. Hodges. Expect exactly what you see on the cover.

rainbows 300x300



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