Archive for April, 2010


Bonus Extended TWIFcomp On Now! Tell Your Friends! Tell People You Don’t Even Like!

April 29, 2010

Apparently there was such an outpouring of “awww, I missed TWIFcomp!” that Jack Welch is accepting late entries into a sort of separate side thing.  I’ve written a couple (my first IF!) and everyone I know (Riff and this other dude) is doing the same.  It’s super fun!  I tend to way overcomplicate things (“hmm, that’d be cool, but of course I’d need to write seven hundred conversational replies for each NPC and incorporate a flocking algorithm”), which simply isn’t a thing you can do with 140 characters.  So that’s a nice change of pace.

Two design goals I’ve been striving to hit:

1)  There should be a joke. It doesn’t have to be a good joke.  It probably isn’t going to be.  But it needs to be there, smiling wanly and pretending it doesn’t know there’s a fish on its head.  Awww, that’s so sad.

2)  All resources not allocated to the joke itself should be used to direct the player towards that joke. I didn’t want to leave the player flopping around bewildered if I could help it.  Well, okay, the first turn of LoveBot you will have no idea what to type, but anything you do type funnels you towards the punchline, so I don’t feel particularly bad about it.

…this part of the post reserved for when I’m damn good and ready.  Don’t want to sit on the rest, though, in case there’s someone who’s not excited about TWIFcomp Bonus Fun Days!


TWIFcomp is coming out now!

April 26, 2010

I’m a bit torn on TWIFcomp, to be honest.  On the one hand, the theme (write a complete IF in no more than 140 characters, not counting whitespace) is cute, turnout is impressive (and titillatingly international), and the games themselves, from what I’ve seen so far, are pretty clever.

On the other hand, 140 characters not counting whitespace seems to be the exact right size for a read-the-author’s-mind puzzle of the old-school variety, you know, the kind that’s really satisfying to finally solve after staring at it for three months straight.  I am much too old and crotchety to deal with those anymore.  I wear far too many sweaters, knit way too many cozies, and way too much of my attention span has been destroyed by tabbed browsing.  Have been doing all right with Matt Weiner’s Sin series, though, and Dan Fabulich’s ChoiceScript games are a different animal altogether.  (“It’s an entirely different kind of flying.”)

Also, The Duel in the Snow:  Abridged Version makes me giggle.  So, yeah, you should check it out.

Update:  Riff and I were joking at dinner about someone using Whitespace to program their entry, since whitespace doesn’t count towards your character limit.  Turns out somebody did.  I have yet to play it, ’cause, dude, Linux.  Dude.  Linux.  Linux, dude.

I mean, I’d have to like download a thing.  Just thinking about it makes me sleepy.


A sad turn of events.

April 9, 2010

Nobody entered Spring Thing 2010! Several people submitted intents to enter, but none of them submitted a game.