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Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

After debating for a while, I’ve decided to put the piece I’ve been writing on “sneak preview” mode. I would really appreciate feedback from anyone willing to give it – what you liked about the story so far, and what you think can be improved. This is the first interactive adventure I’ve written, but I’ve worked very hard on it.

The story is titled “Recursion Theory”, and it’s about a man that finds himself re-living the same day, repeatedly (similar to Groundhog Day). You goal is to reach the ‘true end’, in which the cycle is broken. I estimate the final product will take around 1.5 hours to play through, though this snippet should only take about ten minutes, perhaps longer if you try to read through all of the available scenes. The entire story will be told in three acts. (Act 1 consists of chapters 1-3, act 2 of chapters 4-6, and act 3 of chapters 7-8). I’m currently writing chapter 6, but chapters 3 through 5 are still quite buggy and need to be heavily revised, so only chapters 1-2 are available to play, at the moment.

(As a side note: If you find yourself unable to reach a page where you are prompted for a passcode, or if you find that you are ever re-directed to a duplicated page, please let me know. Please also let me know if you encounter any text that you've seen in a previous 'run' through the day which isn't greyed out and in italics. I've created many variables to try and ensure this works properly, but I'm not sure if there are any errors in the coding. Thanks.)

The link can be found here: http://chooseyourstory.com/story/recursion-theory-

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago
I don't have time to look over the entire thing right now, but I read up until the first choice. The writing itself is really solid and there are already hints such as the poster that things are more than what they seem. The photos included are a nice touch too. (That is a very pretty glass building!) I do think the first page may run a bit long...it's over a thousand words and most of them are about breakfast. The warnings about going back may be a bit excessive as well, or at least they don't clarify that you're only referring to the 'Go back' button in the far upper right. Someone else was worried about the same thing recently but the fact is people almost never use that button, if they've noticed it at all. Hitting back on the browser is both more convenient and also undoes whatever variable changes that have been made. The story as described may be a better fit for Modern Adventure, it's not really the sort of thing that the Sci Fi category usually brings to mind. I hope to get a chance to look at this more thoroughly soon, it's a promising start and seems really ambitious. However....I'm not actually sure it's in Sneak Peek. I don't see the link listed in your profile, so other people may not be able to access it. e: logged out to test, and no it's not accessible to mortal scrubs. You must not have saved the changes after checking the box.

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago
Another thing is that I noticed you're using the RTE. That was updated a few months ago so maaaaybe it'll be find, but in the past it's caused some very wonky behavior with images and scripts, and it seems like you'll be using a lot of both. You can turn it off in your profile and just use HTML for images (or bold and italics and whatnot) but the pages you already made will have all that crud the RTE inserts if you go to edit them. They'll still look fine for readers though.

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

Thank-you for the advice, Mizal. I saw your post earlier this morning and tried to save my story so that it would be accessible as a sneak preview, but the change didn’t seem to stick, for some reason. I’ve set it on “sneak preview” mode again and saved the entire story game, and it now appears when I am logged out of my profile, so hopefully it is now visible for the average viewer. I would love to hear some feedback from others on this site. If you get the chance to read through all of what is available, I would love to hear your opinion, as well.

I appreciate your comments on the writing and photos. I spent a long time creating the posters (there are two of them). I may also consider splitting the first page into two separate pages.

I suppose the reason that my warnings were so severe is because I don’t want the game to ever be put into an unwinnable state, due to improper use of the ‘go back’ button. I also don’t want a user to think, ‘I’ve explored every possible pathway, and I still haven’t reached a resolution!’ Oftentimes, in later chapters, exploring every (or most) pathways is necessary to unlock new pathways, which won’t occur if the user starts ‘undoing’ their choices. This problem persists even if the user hits the ‘go back’ button on their browser, since they might not understand why they can’t progress through the story. Additionally, sometimes paths are presented which cannot be both viewed on the same ‘run’ through the day (unless the user manipulates the ‘go back’ button). Which path was chosen on the previous playthrough is often recorded in variables, and impacts which scenes are visible to the player on subsequent runs. If the user tries to view both options in one go, this can obviously be problematic. Should the user manage to somehow put the game in an unwinnable state because of this, they’d have to restart the entire story to fix the problem. I don’t want anyone to deal with this, since I intend for the narrative to be quite lengthy!

I also noticed the problems that are experienced when inserting images with the new RTE. I’ve worked around this by trying to place most of my code either in the page script, or by saving it as my last action on the page if I make it part of the source code. I’ve found that it helps me to read through my own work when editing, with the RTE available, after exploring with both options. If I experience any problems with the coding due to the editor, I will consider toggling it off.

I appreciate you informing me that the game did not initially save on “sneak preview” mode. I also appreciate all your thoughtful comments, so far.

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

Some thoughts:

I read the first few pages, and your writing is definitely well above average. Good, actually. The insertion of the poster is clever.

As for page length, I am of the mind that a story should be as long as it needs to be, especially when it's in the hands of a skilled writer. There was a lot of naturalism in these first few pages that I appreciated (noticing what was on TV, the chaos of trying to get an entire family out the door, trying to navigate a strange environment). I didn't really see anything superfluous. My only suggestion is that there should be some stronger foreshadowing of whatever is to come on that first page, which will help hook the reader and keep them in the story; otherwise, the plot seems to be about the "excitement" of eating waffles and going to a physics lecture.

Also, the characters could be a bit more sharply defined. I got that this was supposed to be a typical middle-class family, doing all the ordinary things, but in these opening pages I didn't get much of a sense of who anybody was.

I found this part of your description problematic:

You may sometimes encounter items in this story, that you can pick up. Having items in your inventory can unlock new pathways, which will be displayed automatically through new links. You will never need to 'use' an item. 

So basically you're telling me I need to click on the items to get the "next page" link, but that I'm never going to do anything with that item ever afterward. This is a kind of pointless clicking that tends to irritate me.

After the first few pages, I just clicked through the story with the "dev panel" turned on to get a sense of how you were using variables (you sure do have a lot of them, some of which are activated early in the story before anything has even happened). I did eventually start seeing lots of gray text, and got to the page asking for a password.

What I was hoping to see was what you considered a "bad ending," and whether I had no choice but to go back a page, or if you were providing a link to put me on the correct path.

In my limited experience working with variables, "go back" doesn't break anything, it just undoes the change to the variable. This is the same whether you click on the "go back" button at the top of the story viewer, or if you click ALT-Back Arrow. With the dev panel open (available in the Chrome extension; ask mizal for the link) you can play with this all day long and ensure that everything is working as you expected. The only thing I'd recommend avoiding is inserting the "previous page" link, which is practically useless in my opinion.

Hope this feedback helps.

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

Thank-you, Bill. I'm glad that you thought the writing was of a good quality, and that you liked the poster. Everyone that's commented so far has mentioned the beginning is a bit slow, so I will try to insert more of a "hook" into the beginning, as suggested. I actually agree with you that most of the characters aren't well-defined; it's one of the parts of my story I was concerned about. I sometimes have trouble with character development and writing realistic dialogue. There's only really two major characters in this story (the protagonist and another character that will become important later on), and I was concerned that the others might fade into the background, too much. Even though the protagonist's family doesn't play a major role in the story, I will try to more sharply define them in earlier segments. 

As for your comment about the items - the idea is that new pathways will be unlocked later in the story, if you have those items in hand. For example, if you pick up a key during one run through the day, you will be able to use that key to unlock a door during a different playthrough. (I give an explanation for the retention of items in one of the later chapters). The reason I didn't want to have the option to 'use' items available, is because the protagonist is initially unaware that they are time travelling at all. They aren't expecting to be carrying strange items on their person. In fact, they will remark upon their confusion over carrying such objects, at times. For the most part, I've been coding the story so that the first time an item is encountered, it is picked up by the reader, whereas if it is later dropped and encountered a second time, it will be picked up automatically. If you feel this is too cumbersome, I may consider having items always be picked up automatically. 

I was not aware there was a "dev panel" that could be used; that sounds very useful. If you found that even with use of the button you experienced no problems progressing through the story, I may remove that author's note. I'll have to see first if it will work throughout the duration of the story game (most of the heavy scripting comes in later chapters). Also, the reason you may think so many variables were activated early in the story is because all of the variables used throughout chapters one and two were re-set on one of the initial pages. Once the story is complete, I won't need to do this, but it was necessary to ensure the "replay" button at the end of the sneak preview re-set all previous scripts. 

By 'bad ending', I meant any day in which you died and the day reset. In the earlier chapters, this means dying in the car crash. The link you are given is always titled 'You woke up.' There will never be the need to go back a page, nor is there a way to put the game into an unwinnable state. If this is confusing, I might edit this author's note as well. 

I appreciate all your feedback and your time spent reading my story.

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago
As to that last bit on endings, I'd reeeeeaaaally recommend you include some End Game and Leave Comments links when the resets happen, or at least make them available somewhere with reasonable frequency. A lot of people here pretty get annoyed at only being able to rate at a winning ending, and it will drastically lower the overall amount of ratings/reviews you get if there's no way to do either without fully navigating a long and complex puzzle game.

Funnily enough, the thing you're doing with the resets (minus the greyed out text and other cool tricks) is often referred to as "forced looping" and is generally reviled. A Groundhog Day style game may literally be the only way to successfully pull this off. At any rate, it's a really cool idea, good luck.

The extension you can get from BradinDvorak's profile or the CYS Dev thread in the Lounge. It adds the dev panel button, dark mode, and some other features and just gives the whole site a facelift.

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

I know about readers sometimes getting annoyed when there is only one "End Game" link throughout the duration of the story. I strongly considered putting more in, for this reason, but I feel like it would detract from the overall story. I've planned out a lot of the chapters very meticulously. In each segment, the reader learns more about what is happening, and why it is happening. I think missing any of these scenes would leave the reader with an incomplete picture. Regardless, I am planning to keep the game in 'sneak preview' mode even once it is fully complete, to get some more advice from readers before it is published. At this point, if you and other commentators still think it would be better to include such links, I might do so. (If this feature is implemented, I will at least warn the reader that they are missing out on key elements to the plot). 

I'm glad you like my idea, overall. And thanks for the directions to the development panel. I've installed it, and it has been rather useful.

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

This is pretty dope!  I played through it three times (without using the "Go Back" button), mixing and matching choices to look for any sort continuity or script errors, and I didn't find any.  Just as Mizal mentioned earlier though, there is a bit of a hurdle to leap over before things really start to ramp up.  A lot of reading on breakfast, seating placement, and bagging logistics.  I know what you're trying to go for, since all of that comes into play later as your character makes slightly different decisions based on, but unless you're reading super closely (like I was trying to do), those details are pretty quickly lost in the grander scheme of having to read entire paragraphs about it.  If I were just casually reading your story, I no doubt would've mindlessly skipped right over those segments.

Basically all of my criticism is contained right there.  If you can hook your reader better and get them past the first crash, then you're golden.  I liked the idea of the repeated text being a lighter color immensely, awesome idea.  The reactions from your character seem very genuine and self-aware as well.  I like how he's constantly correcting himself into believing that the previous instance had been a dream.  All of the other characters seem pretty, secondary, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, just that their traits take a backseat to the mystery that's going on.  That's probably for the best.  It's also well-written, I wasn't reading for grammatical or spelling errors, but nothing stuck out to me.  I'm hyped for its eventual release!

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

Hello, thanks for your comment! I found it very helpful, and I'm really happy that someone played through my game multiple times to check for scripting consistencies. I appreciate your criticism about there needing to be more of a "hook" in the initial few pages. I will try my best to do this. I'm also glad that you liked how previously seen text was greyed out and italicized. It's required a lot of scripting and effort. My hope is that it makes the story seem less repetitive (previously seen segments can be glossed over by the reader, if desired) as well as emphasize new changes. 

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

Just gonna put some general things, but you definitely seem to be going well, which is nice to see.

Technicalities

The writing looks pretty good to me, so I'll just mention the things that stood out to me (thought some might just be style differences):

  • “Sorry, I think we’re in front of the wrong building, but the right one isn’t far on foot – follow me – now ..is it ..okay, I think it’s to the west, just this way..” | Ellipses are supposed to be three dots, but all these are two. You used three earlier, too, so I'll go with this being an oversight?
  • ("A lot of distinguished lecturers host their conferences here," Sara explained. "It's designed to appear very welcoming.") | Having dialogue inside parenthesis is interesting to me, but as I generally avoid them in fiction writing, I can't comment on if the usage is correct or not (but I can say that it isn't annoying me, as their usage is sometimes prone to do).

Story

Mirror, Mirror, what does the Notebook say?

Does our protagonist have a phone on him? He should totally take a photo of the creepy notebook and transform it in whatever way is necessary. Crystal does have a phone, so if being seen with something that isn't yours isn't weird, could even ask to borrow hers. Anyway, figured I'd mention this, because I find phones to be pretty useful and that their functionality is sometimes overlooked in written works (too early to tell here though, and lets not forget reasons can be given for their minimal usage).

Also dammit! I went to the washroom, there is a mirror there (probably)! Seems I'm more interested in this book than the protagonist, but we'll see if his attitude changes when the looping begins...

Speaking of the looping, it seems to be handled well, in that it is interesting so far. Greying out duplicate text is a great idea too, so I commend you for that, but it does make me worry you'll use it later on with new text as some sort of meta breaking device (but hey, I shouldn't worry... not yet at least).

Ratburn

Just wanted to say that this is an interesting name.

Go Back

I hit the back button a few times, nothing seemed to break, figured I'd mention it. Everything else seemed to work as well, but I didn't test every possibility (although doing that can be a poor way to test, depending on how many combinations exist, especially for looping games).

Passcode

Would using the extension make this easier to hack? As brute-forcing seems like a waste of time...

That aside, I'd not mention that it is a five digit passcode, just so that it is more secure (although depending on how it is coded, mentioning it or not might not matter).

Conclusion

The main thing would be having more to read, as nothing really happened yet... you know, barring introductions and the beginning of the looping. What is there has a good pace to it, and while it seems to be on the linear side it is handled in a way that keeps it engaging (as there are still choices, but how impactful they are I cannot say, considering you're using variables).

What I'm trying to say is, keep writing, you're doing good. How good the final story will be, however, depends on how it all fits together, which I can't really comment on, but I can say that at the very least you can end up with a well-written story, assuming the writing quality doesn't nosedive.

Peeps who are put off by the length shouldn't worry, what can be reached isn't that long (unless I missed some path, which is possible), so you should also give some feedback.

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

Thank-you for your comments. They are very detailed and I appreciate them a lot. I wasn't aware that ellipses had to be exactly three dots long. (I usually adopt this convention, but I sometimes have used less or more to indicate shorter or longer pauses.) I've fixed the segments that you've indicated. 

Your comments regarding the story are very clever. Let's just say that you may be pleasantly surprised by some of the developments in later chapters. I'm glad that you weren't experiencing any errors with the 'go back' button. If the same holds true once the full story is available (especially in some of the more script-heavy chapters), then I will consider removing that comment. My concern was exactly as you mentioned; there's essentially no way to test every possible combination, and ensure it doesn't screw something up in at least one instance. 

I guess if someone really wanted to hack the password and keep playing then they could, lol. There is a lot more available, but it's a pretty ghastly sight right now. I'm constantly modifying links to allow myself to test through different segments more quickly, which means entire segments of the story might even be skipped. It probably wouldn't make sense for someone trying to read it. The variables in chapter three aren't fully coded, so I'm not sure if it's even possible to move on from there without deliberately re-coding links myself, while play-testing. 

I hope that you enjoy the final product, once it is available. 

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago
Going back in the sense of right clicking > back arrow (or the equivalent on mobile) as I believe most people do undoes whatever variable may have been changed getting to that page. Clicking the actual Go Back button provided by the story window in some situations does not. The confusion comes in because people rarely specify how when they just say they went back.


Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

When I've ran through my game so far to test it with all my variables showing (I'll hide most before publishing,) using the Go Back button in game always undoes the variables. If that sometimes fails, I'll need to keep an eye on it.

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

I have managed to create an in-game keyboard (for a puzzle in chapter three), and I was wondering if anyone would mind checking it out just to see if it works on their device. Solving this puzzle will be necessary to progress in the story, so it needs to work across multiple platforms / browsers.

You can type letters, press "enter" to submit the password, or press "clear" to reset the keyboard. Right now, the password is set to "QWERT". I would appreciate it if someone could try using a few incorrect combinations as well as the correct combination to see if it works. 

To access it, go to: https://chooseyourstory.com/story/recursion~20theory~20 . On the front page, instead of clicking on the quote, click on "Beta-test Padlock". 

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago
Works for me. The text (password as it is being entered and correct/incorrect password) does get moved around by resizing the window. The text can still be read, so I doubt it matters, but figured I'd mention it.

Worked on Chrome and Edge, Windows.

I imagine if there will be issues it'll be with phones, but we'll see I guess.

P.S. Can't enter more than five letters, assuming that is by design, but did notice you can enter a password of less than five, so still gonna mention it.

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

Great, thanks for testing it out for me! It was working okay on safari (on mobile) for me, so hopefully it works okay for others, as well. And yes, only being able to enter five digits is by design (I had to put some sort of maximum on the number of digits, and each time I added a digit I had to create a new page filled with a lot of scripting. I ended up settling on five). 
 

I had hoped that since I had used percentages with the images, instead of absolute positions, that the message would display appropriately upon window re-sizing. Thanks for letting me know about this problem. 

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago
Reader, was that you that joined the Discord the other day, or someone else?

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

Oh, that was me. I didn't post any messages, so I didn't realize it would show up in the logs, haha. 

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

We were all too aware of your silence, but we tried not to take too much offense.

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

6 months ago

My bad, haha. I'm not too familiar with Discord, so I didn't realize it would work that way. I thought it was similar to the forums here, but with more instantaneous messaging. 

Recursion Theory: [UPDATE]

5 months ago

So I've finally finished working through the narrative and coding for chapter three. This completes Act One of the game. This chapter is easily the largest in the entire game, featuring two digital padlocks, three interactive books, and multiple choices to explore. It also begins to answer some of the mysteries that everyone was curious about, with yet more questions arising. 

I would love to receive more general feedback on the writing (likes / suggestions for improvement). I would also very much appreciate if anyone tells me if they encounter any bugs while they are playing. Finally, please let me know approximately how long it took you to read through all of Act One. I have not made any revisions to chapters one/two yet, so if you've already read through those, feel free to skip through those choices. 

Some of the features of this chapter include: every page that has been previously seen will have revised comments from the protagonist when/if encountered a second time. Previously seen text should be great out and italicized, whereas new text will appear normal. The only exception is that if a page is being encountered for the third time, the 'new' text which was seen the second time will not be italicized. This is so the reader is never simply presented with a wall of grey text. If you notice any mistakes with this, please let me know!

You will notice that as you make choices, the protagonist will remember those choices and remark on them in subsequent playthroughs. For this reason, I recommend sticking with your initial choices, even if you believe it was the 'wrong' one. 

As a reminder, the link to the story can be found here: http://chooseyourstory.com/story/recursion-theory-

I've also created a guide that provides both a walkthrough as well as hints for the entirety of Act 1. It is told in the form of a narrative, and serves as a companion piece. I'd like to get feedback on this, as well, but I'd recommend trying to complete chapter three for yourself first. It can be found here: http://chooseyourstory.com/story/heavenly-hints~3a-a-guide-for-~22recursion-theory~22

 

Recursion Theory: [UPDATE]

5 months ago

I am looking forward to reviewing the updated story. Thanks for posting the links.

Recursion Theory: [UPDATE]

5 months ago

I spent several hours reading/playing this story game today, making it all the way to the end of the preview version. The majority of that time was spent cycling back through that third day over and over, wondering where the missing clue was... only to realize (with the help of the "Heavenly Hints") that I had misinterpreted the one clue I thought I had deciphered!

From a writing perspective, there is not too much that I can say. Your grasp of the language is pretty firm, and the only punctuation/grammar issue I noticed on a repeated basis had to do with dialogue:

"Where did you get that key from, dad?" Your eldest queried.

Should be:

"Where did you get that key from, dad?" your eldest queried.

Otherwise, I encountered no coding issues.

Could the story be improved? Maybe, but this has to do with whether your intention is to write a story or a puzzle. And in what you label as "chapter 3," this very much becomes a puzzle.

As a story, I can see that you made very good use of your initial feedback, as the initial page did a better job at getting my attention as well as setting the stage for the recurring time loops. I still think the individual members of the family could be a bit more sharply drawn -- by which I don't mean the addition of oodles of exposition, but maybe three lines per person to describe what each family member means to me. This could be the brief remembrance of some little personality quirk, or perhaps a little anecdote of something the person did that illustrates that quirk. Otherwise, all I really pick up now is that there is a wife, two daughters, and a brother who chauffeurs everybody around. The women come close to being vivid characters, but the presence of the brother seems odd; did my wife and I lose our driver's licenses or something?

You seem to be a detail-oriented writer, noticing all the little nuances of daily life -- who made what for breakfast, and who prefers which brand of coffee, for example. I very much appreciate this, but it does make it stand out when some details get fudged.

One example is the reference to the baseball game on TV. I believe the time of day is 11:00 AM, and the game is already in the ninth inning. Elsewhere, a detail on the Philosophy Club poster leads me to believe the story is set in the month of October. The problem I had with this otherwise nice addition of detail is that professional, televised baseball games are never played that early in the day, unless there is a time zone discrepancy. In October, any game would be a playoff game, and none would begin until 1 PM Eastern Time. Given the average length of a baseball game is 3+ hours, that Giants game that is wrapping up at 11 AM would only make sense if the game was being played somewhere on the east coast... and this story was taking place in Hawaii.

Second, as I mentioned above, George's role in the story so far is... odd. Maybe his presence is explained in the unpublished part of the story. However, it would be highly unusual for a nuclear family of four -- where even the kids seem old enough to drive -- to be so dependent on the bachelor brother to drop them off at the seminar and then pick them up later. This detail had me asking questions that were never answered. Maybe there should be some salacious reason, revealed later in the story, why Mom and Dad can't drive anymore.

Finally, the seminar on physics, which seems to be such a key element of this first act, is glossed over a little bit too much in my opinion. Prof. Ratburn (interesting name!) steps onto the stage without introduction, asks a question, and then rapidly disappears. Liam seems to black out during the rest of that episode. And I find it hard to believe that no one would notice a cup of green goo placed at every seat.

A small number of choices seemed to be not in keeping with Liam's character. The one that really comes to mind is the "sneak around / pull a prank" option in the third chapter, which to me made sense only from a game perspective, and not because of anything intrinsic to the story. Liam, the character, is only vaguely aware that he's repeating the same horrible day over and over again, never retaining more than a slight sense of deja vu. The reader, however, is looking for ways to break the loop, so after a certain point I was playing more as Bill than as Liam, looking for keys and passwords. At one point, the entire family is breaking into a room, guessing a 5-character password, and obtaining a useful object. "The family that snoops together, loops together," I suppose. Later it's Liam doing the snooping on his own, even though he knows so little about what's happening to him at that point. I am pointing these out not as criticisms, but as places where the game elements are overpowering the story elements. Perhaps Liam needs to retain more memory between loops, so that he too realizes he needs to find the answers that are behind those locked doors.

As for the puzzles, I did ultimately need to cheat on both. The text one, I admit, was quite clever, and I did a virtual face-palm when I figured out where I went wrong. However, I think the clues for the numerical puzzle could be tweaked. One in particular was very abstract, and I'm not sure I ever would have gotten that one on my own.

Overall, I think you are on track to publish a stellar story-puzzle, or puzzle-story as the case may be. Not only are you seeking help and feedback, but you seem to be taking good advantage of that feedback. Having read your prior concerns about the on-page scripting, potential issues with the "go back" feature, and your use of items, I did have some reservations about what to expect.

However, now that I've read the story / played the game to the point where you have locked it down, I understand much better what you are trying to do. The "go back" button really isn't necessary, since there are no false endings to avoid. I expected the gray text to be distracting, but I learned that it was actually helpful in determining my progress through the loops. And the use of items works well here. None of it was buggy.

I am looking forward to reading more or the story! I just don't go changing the passwords on me.

Time Travel Game Sneak Preview [Recursion Theory]

one month ago
@Reader82

Is this still a thing that's happening?

Doesn't look like you've logged in in awhile, but I was looking forward to this one.