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Standalone or sequels?

11 months ago

I have an awesome idea for a storygame, but even in my head it feels really long. I originally wanted to split it into a few parts, but I wasn't sure how I could pick it up in a sequel without simplifying the plot a ton. The best I could think was to give seven different links at the start of the second and about twenty at the start of the third to keep the plot from having to be undone. Should I make a super long storygame, split it up, or simplify the plot? I can see all three working well and I just wanted to get some input on it. 

Standalone or sequels?

11 months ago
Make a long game. Likely there's places you can streamline it to keep it from falling into the 'superlong' category, but multipart stories are difficult to pull off and most people would rather just play the whole plot out in one game.

And if you'll look at Will11's Magellan series for instance there's also the problem of each game in the series getting less and less players. Anyone new coming to a series feels like they have to read the earlier games before even beginning and usually won't bother.

Aside from all that, each sequel basically locks in the previous games to one 'canon' path which almost defeats the purpose of them having choices, but it's just not practical (if even possible) to make the new story cover more than one without having to tell a bunch of separate stories in addition to the branches it's already going to have...and that's before adding a potential THIRD story on top of it that has to track and account for even more.

Standalone or sequels?

11 months ago
Long game.

Standalone or sequels?

11 months ago
Definitely. I was gonna chime in earlier but Mizal's reasoning pretty much covers it.

Standalone or sequels?

11 months ago

A long game would definitely be best, as the others have said. 

On the part about standalones or sequels, you could always sort of do both for your story.  For example, write the first part of the story, and see if you can tell the whole thing in one sitting.  From the beginning, to the middle, the climax and the resolution of the problem or defeat of the villain.  

Then, if you still want a second part, make it take place after some time has passed chronologically.  Perhaps introduce a new problem or bad guy, so that way the readers don't have to have a huge exposition dump on the events of the first part to completely understand the second.  A little bit of info is okay, but if there are pages and pages and huge paragraphs it would be an issue. 

Extreme amounts of exposition and trying to cram large info dumps in readers brains would definitely make them close the browser and find something else. 

This way it will be fun to read, and maybe the readers will be pleasantly surprised when they find out there is a part two, or that they accidentally read the second installment first and decide to read the first part second.  

Any way, good luck on your story!

Standalone or sequels?

11 months ago
My opinion? Full game.

Then do spin-off sequels ala "Death Song" for that sweet fan service. You could even have multiple set in alternate timelines to adress different player choices in the main game! :O

But I'm getting ahead of myself.

Some more of my opinions:

Don't worry about writing a too epic story to start with tho. Might be nice to focus on a particular part of your story that you like and just flesh that out into a full game so you have a shorter but more meaty and manageable (to write) experience. You know, for getting your feet wet, so to speak.

But epics are awesome, so feel free to knock yourself out on that if you want. I haven't finished any stories, but they're still fun to draft and plan and all that good stuff!

Alternatively, a very popular series (well it was, not sure if that's still consensus) on here was Homo Perfectus. It's a nine parter series, each part having a true end that leads into the next game (at least from what I've played of it). You could try something similar if you're fine with true ends (like I am) and are able to make your parts stand-alone while still working as a series (which I can't do, lol).

The Choice of Games crowd are also very fond of multi-parters (sometimes annoyingly so. Apparently you'll get cursed if your story game has more than 8 chapters on there), but that's a whole other thing so let me know if you want and I can elaborate.

Happy hunting, pm me if you decide to do a beta or demo. I like reading WIP stuff.