Storytelling tools for selection: inklewriter | Emily Short's Interactive Storytelling
Recently I did an interviewee with Rock Paper Shotgun, which contained a few questions about what I think of inklewriter, the ramified storytelling tools of inskle Studios. It was a funny CYOA video broadcast, which was really fun, but it means it's difficult for me to draw people's attention to my response to this one.
Did you try the Inklewriter? I' m happy to get it to the media, and Jon Ingold is a good guy and I just hopefully it will lead to good things for him and some small studio. I don't feel overpowered by the availability of another interesting instrument for which I don't have enough spare moment for a more thorough test run.
Each of these utilities try to address the same fundamental problem: an election-based story that uses a variable to keep tabs on the state of the state of the universe so that you can make decisions with long-term implications, but can prevent the combinational blast of the bifurcation of your story every single moment the gambler makes a new one. The ChoiceScript tends towards RPG-like characters processing.
The ChoiceScript support for this type is a function called Fairmate, which allows the writer to give a char proportionate bonus, based on how good the character's statistics already are. Varitale is similar to ChoiceScript in that it allows the writer to keep an eye on any number of variable and show the user any subsets of it.
With Varytale, the writer can present stories (short text passages) to the readers that have been chosen at random from a swimmingpool or by priorities, while a ChoiceScript track always necessarily travels from one knot to another. Where ChoiceScript's edition looks very naked, Varytale relies on a lavish book-like typeface. inklewriter has branched and state-tracking tags, but no storylines, no randomised results and no fair mathemat.
Thus, the inklewriter search engines offer a partial set of the back-end complexities offered by ChoiceScript and Varytale. However, the special sales argument of inklewriter is that it is highly available. There is no need to down-load anything to get started (as with ChoiceScript), nor do you need to be familiar with more than one screen (as with Varytale).
It' a great way to capture and sketch new contents. The combination of feature and style choices makes me think that inklewriter is the right instrument for small, quick jobs - drafts, prototype, toys- but that seasoned writers who want to invest some spare times in a big selection of history might want one of the other for you.
Since then, I've worked a little more with the Inklewriter by creating a drawing named Holography and researching some of my own thoughts about a history created by the players and not by a succession of decisions in chronological order. Overall, I don't think I spend more than three or four hrs, which is much less than the amount of money I put into Varytale or even ChoiceScript (although I never released the ChoiceScript product I was working on).
I' inklewriter is pleasantly sleek and glossy in running; also it makes you pretty sure about just sitt down with an explanatory scheme and going for it because a little alarm up in the corner will tell you how many bulk ends you have left right now; you always know you're going to be able to find and return to the songs you haven't worked on.
Now there is also a visualisation device for writers, which I did not see during the RPS-inspection. This is the "map" of holography that was automatically created by inklewriter: Useful, the card lets you click on a knot to edit this point in history, and when I write holography, I often viewed it to find out which threads of history have not gone very far yet.
It' not nearly as good to move around parts to create an attractive look as the corresponding Varytale Mapper, and although it doesn't make much difference when you're doing it with a small card, it begins to count much more later. To sit down and just shake a little bit of interactivity out of your sleeve, with minimum setup and headroom, Inklewriter is probably the smoothest thing on the market today.
Redesigned to add: from 27 September 2012 there will be a feature to turn an Incle into Kindle. It is a symbolic amount, but it allows writers to display their work as Amazon interactivity, offering a possible way to bill for inklewriter works.