Twine is Fine Fun

Twine is Fine Fun 

I presenteth to you my very first Twine game (instructions below). First, what is Twine? It's an open-source tool where you can design text based games, but you can also add images and all sorts of stuff, with the right knowledge it can give you a great deal of design versatility. 

But the beauty of Twine, at least for me, is that it kinda deals with the essence of a digital game, expressing this as far as it can go without exposing the actual code (which would be incomprehensible to most people). Lovely, detailed visuals are great and all but it sort of masks the fact that you are doing not much more than what you would do in a simple Twine game. A more cinematographic approach maybe impresses people more and might feel easier to quickly engage with, but the basics are pretty much the same: you are able to interact with certain elements, these respond to your action with some sort of event; and for many games that offer dialogue choices or silent characters that "talk", text is an essential interactive element. Anyway, there's room for all kinds of designs so why not engage with a not as simple as it seems Twine game? 

Click on the image below and it will take you to my little game (if you're using a cellphone or small tablet, go with this version: Choices-mobile). It's very short by the way, won't take much of your time. The interface is pretty straightforward but just in case: follow the blue text. The finished product is HTML so it should open properly in any modern browser. Enjoy!


You can download Twine from here. There's a bunch of material on the web about it, a good easy tutorial to start with is this one: How to make games with Twine, by Anna Anthropy. She also links to a few games at the end (some links seem broken though). 

Now, even though everyone will go on and on about how easy it is to use (and really it doesn't require any programming knowledge and the interface is very nice to deal with), depending on where you stand and what you want to do, Twine may get more or less complex, and if you never handled code before it will require some effort in thinking things from a coding perspective. Don't be afraid of how code is expressed, with all those weird little symbols, some of it can be learnt within the day and with the little you've learnt you can do a lot. And don't get too frustrated if things suddenly don't work as you expect them, like I did at one point; it always helps to approach the situation from different angles and just go over what you are doing, there is usually never something wrong with the program itself, more often it's missing code, or one bit overrules another, or you are using incorrect syntax. Sometimes it's not that simple figuring out the proper path that will lead to the desired results; I guess the more you do interactive stuff, the more you start to think things a bit differently. And so on, and so forth...  

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