UPDATE: The bundle has expanded considerably, and now includes over 1,500 items. It’s also raised over five million dollars. I’ll be adding new items to the lists below as I find them. If the thing’s still running at the point you’re reading this, do check it out: it’s a rare chance to get over $9,000 worth of goodies for as little as five bucks (though I really do hope you’ll chip in a bit more), all while supporting a great cause.
For the next nine days, itch.io is running a Bundle for Racial Justice and Equality, with all proceeds going to the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund and Community Bail Fund. There’s already been an extraordinary level of support (just over a million dollars – though that’ll probably become hilariously out of date even before this post is published). If you want to contribute to the cause, I feel as though this is a good way: I suspect that the sheer scale of the endeavour and the number of people involved will give it a reach that individual donations wouldn’t be able to match.
I’m not kidding about how big this is, by the way: it’s quite possibly the largest bundle of any kind ever put together, with over 700 games (and various other things) on offer. One thing to mention would be that some of these items are free or pay-what-you-want anyway: my own contribution, Draw Nine, has never had a price on it. Bundles on Itch are less about getting a fantastic deal and more about gathering together items for some kind of cause or on some sort of theme.
That said, this particular bundle offers over $3,000 worth of items for just $5, so it is also a fantastic deal. Please do consider bunging in a little extra if you can afford it, though: this is a truly extraordinary amount of work that’s being offered up and some of these titles would be worth much more than a fiver on their own. Itch has put together their own selection of top titles to look at, but since this is my blog and clearly you’re reading it, here are a few of my picks: Continue reading
This weekend was Global Game Jam 2020, and although I had planned to tackle my fifth consecutive attempt at the event over in Brighton (back where I first started), I ended up going for a third year at the University of Southampton. The weekend was bookended by work on Friday and a competition deadline on Monday so all in all it was easier to avoid any long journeys. I took a fairly relaxed approach to the challenge (not sleeping under a computer desk like last year) and, with the help of Paul Robins, put together a project I’m really quite happy with. The theme this year was “repair.”
Mash Mash Restoration is the first Game Jam project I’ve taken the lead in that wasn’t made in Twine. I put it together in GDevelop 5 (much like Flappy Bard, Cookie Cracker and Bananarchy). As the title mich suggest, it’s (almost) a rhythm game in which you use three different sorts of repair tools spread across three conveyor belts in order to fix an endless stream of broken(?) robots. Continue reading
I got a chance to show Bananarchy at a game developers’ event in Southampton last night, and as you might expect its fruit-based control scheme attracted a fair bit of attention.
Later on in the evening I did a quick interview with Voice FM, which you should be able to catch sometime around 7pm tonight. You can tune in on 103.9 FM if you’re in the area, or use the “listen live” option online if you’re farther afield. At least a couple of other games people I know were also interviewed, so it should be well worth watching out for!
EDIT: The programme is now available on Catch Up through this link. My interview begins at 1:34:00, but do have a listen to the other developers featured in the second hour: they’re working on some fantastic things!
If you’re interested in learning to make games with Twine – and especially if you’re interested in using them to build up a portfolio – it’s well worth considering how to reach as many players as possible.
Anything that runs in a browser (such as a Twine game) will tend to be played more often than something must be installed, and anything that’s primarily text and choice -based (like most Twine games) is generally more accessible to players with disabilities than something that depends primarily on using quick reflexes to respond to graphics on screen. By making just a few small adjustments to your Twine games – such as ensuring your text is clearly legible, and adding descriptions to any visual media included along with it – you can boost their reach even further!
This post offers a few quick tips, as well as links to further resources if you want to look into the subject in a little more detail:
Hey all, After our group discussion about my “Disability Media” Twine project on Frost accessibility, I went on to do some further research on how to make Twine and the HTML you put in it as accessible as possible. I hope to update this post as I learn more, because this is actually to some […]
Here’s something I’ve been waiting to share for a while: the lineup of games on show at WordPlay 2019 has now been announced!
WordPlay will be running on November 9th and 10th at the Toronto Reference Library. This is the same event that featured Wolf at the Door in 2018, and I’m pleased to say that they offered me the opportunity to judge games for the shortlist this time around! If you’re anywhere nearby that weekend, do drop in: I wasn’t sent everything that was submitted, but what I did play through was exceptionally good. It was tough to whittle it down to just the top few of those, and I’ve got no doubt that what the other judges chose must be similarly excellent.
I’ve made an account on The Interactive Fiction Database and am in the process of adding my Twine games. So far the only thing I’ve put on there is Draw Nine, but if you visit my profile you’ll also see Cragne Manor alongside it: the game page already listed me as a contributor at the point I signed up.
I aim eventually to have all my significant works of interactive fiction on there (ie. everything but the Twine for Beginners example pieces and some of the April Fools jokes), but if you’ve got any particular favourites then let me know in the comments and I’ll aim to get those in there first.
Alternatively, IFDB follows a Wikipedia sort of format where anyone can edit it, so if there’s anything you really want to see in there then you can add it yourself!
Depending on how closely you follow my work – and in particular whether or not you’re subscribed to my monthly newsletter and all the goodies therein – you might be aware that I recently began supplementing my Twine projects with simple HTML5 games. For the moment these tend to revolve around well established (and thus easily replicated) mechanics, which is why the latest is…
If you’re familiar with incremental games (and especially if you’ve played Cookie Clicker specifically) then this will look a lot like what’s already out there. While I’m still getting the hang of Gdevelop5 – the tool I’ve been using for HTML5 games – it only makes sense to follow a tried and tested recipe (to keep things cookie-themed). However, even while aiming for a fairly safe format, I like to think that I’ll inevitably work in some new ingredients. Continue reading
This Saturday I’ll be heading to London for AdventureX. Also this Saturday, Wolf at the Door – the collaborative folk horror game I’ve been working on for the past few months – will be heading to Toronto for WordPlay 2018. Check out the shamelessly self-reblogged post below for more details.
If you’re anywhere near Toronto and can make the trip, I highly recommend it: there are a whole lot of other great games (and talks) to catch as well, and you should also definitely check out the following post for those reasons as well.
I’d love to head to WordPlay myself but on top of having other plans and it being an impractically huge distance to travel (which pretty much rule it out anyway), they won’t even let me into Canada at the moment. In what feels like pretty much the most “me” turn of events ever, I can’t get to Canada right now because I’m Canadian. In order to fulfil the requirement that Canadian citizens travel into Canada on Canadian passports, I have to provide proof of Canadian citizenship or (potentially) be turned away for having Canadian citizenship. It’s hard to articulate just how stupid this is.
But this is getting a little off-track. The main thing take away from this post would be that you should definitely check out the following (much more professional) post on the Deck of Bards website. It includes a link to the Wolf at the Door demo – the first time it’s ever been available to anyone outside our team – and also you might like to subscribe to the Deck of Bards blog for more Wolf at the Door updates.
Slice-of-life folk horror game Wolf at the Door will be on show for the first time ever at WordPlay, a free annual games festival hosted by the Hand Eye Society. This year’s event will be taking place from 12-5pm on November 10th at the Toronto Reference Library. The current version of the game contains only […]
Flash Fiction Month 2018, Day 31
Challenge #14: Write a story that includes a criminal character and is not set on dry land. It may be a 369er, an epistolary narrative, or a work of interactive fiction.
You are Wishes O’Houlihan, top agent of the International Leprechaun Police. Riding atop your mighty steed – a unicorn with a chainsaw for a horn – you are unstoppable.
Your mission is to take down Captain Blokebeard, the most notorious pirate of the North Specific.
Parachute in! 2
Speedboat chase! 3
Launch yourself from a cannon! 4 Continue reading
Back in my first Twine for Beginners tutorial (which I recommend at least taking a glance at before tackling this one), I mentioned that it was possible to do just about anything you see in the classic Fighting Fantasy books using only passages and hyperlinks. These gamebooks use a system of numbered passages and references, and choosing which passage to turn to performs exactly the same function as choosing which hyperlink to click in a Twine game. In addition to these standard choices, however, the passages will occasionally say something like “If you have a dagger, turn to 294. If you do not have a dagger, turn to 334.”
There’s a totally obvious way to do this in Twine, and that’s to directly copy the method used in this Fighting Fantasy book. “[[If you have a dagger, click here]]. [[If you do not have a dagger, click here]]” will do exactly the same job and involves absolutely no Twine know-how that wasn’t covered in my first tutorial. If you’re happy to simply ask the reader to keep track of their previous choices (or note things down on some kind of character/inventory sheet) and don’t fancy reading on, then you can just do that. Continue reading