Virtual Novels and the Art of Game Writing Aug 10, 2023 15:58:55 GMT -6
Post by Bird on Aug 10, 2023 15:58:55 GMT -6
There's a lot of really good Virtual Novels on the market now. Some of which have some top-tier writing in them.
Some questions for y'all:
Have any of you considered writing virtual novels? Why or Why Not?
What virtual novels - if you played any - did you really enjoy? Why?
What types of game-writing did you really enjoy (regardless of the type of game)? Why?
An example of a very well written virtual novel game:
- Wayfarer - High Fantasy - you play as a wayfarer, who is an ostracized and highly skilled group of people who are immune to magic. Most humans have magic, so those that are immune are seen as freaks. The story is complex and your decisions heavily impact the storyline, the relationships you build, and your stats.
- Infinite Stars - Science Fiction - the prologue sets the stage for the complex drama that your character will be dropped into. Humanity has entered into an Interspecies Concordant, but several alien species believe they are too young and impulsive for this. You are a diplomat sent from Earth to a human cruiser that is badly damaged and is the focal point of a potential crisis that could impact humanity's status in the concordant.
- Blue Lacuna - Mixed genre/SF - You play as a wayfarer who travels through different worlds. The choices made have a major impact on gameplay, relationships, and other aspects of the world. It's highly text based, and was the 2010 IndieCade Finalist for interactive fiction.
- Roadwarden - Fantasy - You play as the Roadwarden sent to help explore and manage an untamed wilderness on the edge of civilization. What can go wrong is likely to go wrong. There is a lot of complex factions there, and the decisions made impact the game pretty heavily as well as your stats. It's very much a survival-based virtual novel.
- Analogue: Hate Story - Science Fiction - you play as an investigator sent on a mission to find out what happened to a lost colony ship. As you dredge through ship files, you encounter to AIs with very different stories of events. You have to piece together clues, though how you piece together clues will influence heavily which ending. (Keep the save file, as the save file can be ported to the followup game)
- More can be found here: Steam's Virtual Novel Tag
More resources exist for making them as well.
- Twine - Free - requires little knowledge of code
- Tyranobuilder - $14.99 - requires little knowledge of code
- Renpy - Free - Does Require some knowledge of code
- Virtual Novel Maker - $59.99 - Users can access code if needed but it's not required
- StoryStylus - Free version and a subscription version exists - requires little knowledge of code
- Various Virtual Novel Tools Made by the Community and More Here and here - Most are Free or on a sliding scale - see the tool for specifics