Shadowdrake27, The Wordsmith

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1/17/2020 2:22 AM

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Wow a blank page with the topic of “me.”  A normal person would have this full of exciting things about themself. Me? I would rather you read my work and form your own opinion about me. Unfortunately, I am a perfectionist with a job, family, and life... so my writing may come out slowly. Therefore, I will call myself a mystery. I act like I am 12, but am at least double that in age. I have been coming to CYS to read awesome stories for awhile. I am currently using it as a medium to plop down all the stories that have been in my mind with nowhere to go. Read them at your discretion, or don’t. I will have fun putting them out there regardless. Feel free to message me with questions, or just to talk, I like both bouncing ideas off people and chatting. I just might not answer right away if I am trapped in the real world at the moment.

*Disclaimer: I am not a grammar freak! That may show up in my writing and my reviews! Please comment if a story has such bad grammar that it takes away from the story! I am working on improving in this area. Of course, if I misuse one semicolon in a 200-page story, I am going to secretly judge you for leaving that comment! But I respond well to criticism usually so it will be okay.*



If you are bored try adding a page to this fun collaborative writing prompt on


Saved threads:

Chapter 1: The She-Demon

Trophies Earned

Earning 100 Points



Clearstone was a peaceful place where a man could forage his own path in life, but that was before Mad Dog Roberts took it over. Now Clearstone is owned by the Roberts Mining Co. and the people are little more than cogs in Roberts golden machine. This traveling cowboy isn't a part of that machine, and he isn't about to leave without a fight.

Day of the Dead--One Soul's All Souls Procession

Day of the Dead Skull

Matthew Mercia had never believed in the Day of the Dead the way his mother did. He didn't get excited to wake up on November second to celebrate the lives of relatives who had passed--until he was one of those relatives. Now he can only wake up on the day of the dead, so he only has tonight to walk among the living. How did I die? Who killed me? Why? These questions may just keep Matthew from celebrating this Dia de Muertos.

Authors Note:

This story was written in four hours for Ectocomp 2019 with 4,500 words, 7 unique endings, and one epilogue. It is based on the All Souls Procession Weekend in Tuscon Arizona. No additional knowledge is needed to read the story, but if you want more information on anything look up the event! 

Edited on 12/06/19: the tense switch on the first page was fixed. Everything else was left the way it was for the contest.

Image from:

Inheritance House

A suspense/horror story. It is about a cabin you inherited from your creepiest uncle (yeah you know the one). There are two possible endings. Good luck.

Tips:  Use the link at the end to go back to the beginning, even if you die you can continue to play. Hit "Drive to cottage" after each play through and look for the room that changed. You will face a choice in that room that will decide if you live or die, again.

Note: A special thanks to Chris113022 and Gower who play tested, and proofread this story.

Leroy and Mika's Organic Poetry

Let's write a poem together,

about nature or the weather.

Alternating lines, you and me,

 writing in perfect harmony.

I will write a line, you the next,

our lais is a river of text.

Leroy and Mika are parting ways for two years. They have signed up for the Peace Corps and are going to opposite corners of the globe to make a difference in the world. Their shared loves are poetry and the environment. This lais is the perfect poem to remind them what they mean to each other; they just have to write it.

Authors Notes:

A 1,000-word story written for a contest with the theme of nature environment. The game is a craft your own poem game. A lais is a poem written with octosyllabic couplets (8 syllable lines that rhyme in pairs). You get to craft the poem that expresses these two characters' love, and you get to decide if their love is strong enough to survive two years apart.

Actual word count is 936.

A special thanks to  Ogre11 and mizal for proofreading and play-testing! Their feedback was instrumental in making this game what it is.

Merlin: Origins

Merlin Ambrosius was just an electrician working in Britain. His last job was on an archeological site doing the lighting for what was believed to be the home of Merlin the Magician. He accidentally got himself sent back in time to the days of King Arthur, where Merlin Ambrosius became the sorcerer of legend. Did he serve King Arthur well as a trusted advisor? Was he a feared but well-respected as a sorcerer? Or did he get caught trying to fool the medieval prince?

Author's Note:

This game was made for the Year's End Contest - Choose Your Own Prompt II. The theme was "8) This story has an original and sensible magic system, built from the ground up. The plot is up to you."

Magic is defined as the power to influence reality by using mysterious or supernatural forces. Rather than having characters learn to shoot fire out of their hands, my magic system is based on having limited technology in the past.

There are two main branches, which focus on different types of "magic." One caution is that some of the smaller pathways are similar, differing only by the puzzle you have to solve and ways you can fail. Also, when choosing between the "Lady of the Lake" myth or the "Sword in the Stone" myth, please note that these tales both involve Excalibur, so the story remains the same until after you make the sword of legend. After that part, these two branches have a different (second) puzzle, which can lead to various endings.

An answer guide is provided for electrical puzzles. For an added challenge, do not use it. Additionally, there is a walkthrough here if you want help finding all 12 endings. Good luck!

Special thanks to Reader82 and poison_mara for proofreading and play-testing for me. Without them, this story would have a few million more errors. Reader82 fixed most of my bad grammar, and poison_mara thought of adding the guide for the electrical puzzles.

The Chronomantic Adventures of Professor Gower: Office Hours

Professor Gower sits in his big, big oak desk, glasses perched precariously on his nose. He lays a fountain pen down atop his grade book and steeples his hands with something of a patient sigh.

He has warned his students:

The purpose of this thread is to have a place to talk about smallish issues of language, style, syntax, grammar, word choice, paragraph structure, or whatever. This is for microlevel issues, not big stuff like "what should I write about?" or "how do I make interesting choices?" or "is that mole bigger than yesterday?"

Bring a piece of your work-in-progress, and let's all discuss it together.

It's worth 40% of your grade, and you may not have an extension.

Alas, no one has come to his office today. This is not an issue though: Professor Gower has better things to do.

Authors Note:

Time travel story-game requested by Microblue with permission from Gower.

Special thanks to TheChef for play-testing and proofreading.

The Description was mostly written by Gower, and the rest is the author's original account of the real adventures of the English professor that travels in time to ensure the safety of literary classics. While you can read this story on its own, it's recommended that you have some familiarity with the classic authors Homer, Marie de France, and Euripides. It's also recommended that you read The Iliad, Lanval, Medea, and Beowulf before reading this story. General knowledge of those works will be accepted for this story but will do nothing for your grades on Gower's quiz to follow.

There are two possible endings. There are also four authors to meet, four literary gems to save, and four historic items to frame in Gower's office; however, there is only one epilogue.

Please enjoy as you travel to the past to meet Gower's favorite authors.

Choose Your Own Cookbook Guide to Thanksgiving Turkey

A mini-game made for Mara's Thanksgiving thread.

A serious(ish) guide to cooking Turkey presented by the Choose Your Own Cookbook Company!

Dark Master

Dark Master Cover

Todd, a master of dark magic in a world that forbids it, has a chance to prove that dark magic can be used for good; unless he becomes the dark lord that everyone fears. Will Todd become a hero, or is he destined to be the villain?


More of a story with multiple outcomes than a game.

There are no right or wrong answers, although you have the option of getting yourself killed many times, and choices matter.

## unique epilogues are available. 

On the first page, there is a link to background information on the world and how it is structured. This link is for people that like to have the basic understanding and context that the main character has at the start. It is completely optional.

Helen's Resurrection

Alexander and Lamar are ready to perform the ceremony. Everything they need is at their fingertips. How to do it has been recorded for centuries, but what they will have to through was conveniently left out.

Everyone knows that the dead are gone from this world, never to return. Yet, people have been talking about ways to bring people back in every culture. Only a few have managed to cheat death. Can you?

Author's Note:

This game was created for the IWT 13 contest (on Infinite Story) with the theme of resurrection. I took the theme literally with resurrecting a person. This is a story following three different (common) methods for doing so. Feel free to explore scientific reanimation, biblical resurrection, and mythological resurrection based on myths from Ancient Greece.

The Chronomantic Adventures of Professor Gower: Origins

This is the first game in a series of tales about Gower and his adventures through time. It will explain how the famous professor first started time traveling, and how I came to know about his many trips through time. Everyone starts somewhere, although Gower's beginning and my own are not chronologically aligned, our stories are very much intertwined.

If this game is released after the second game titled The Chronomantic Adventures of Professor Gower: Office Hours--for any reason--the timeline is in jeopardy. All time-travelers need to report to Alpha-Prime prepared for immediate deployment. 

This game was written and released exactly one year before the second in the original timeline.

Author's Notes:

Another time travel game with Gower's permission.

There are XYZ endings.

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2019: Objective Weighing of Value thread on 1/14/2020 11:27:41 PM

This is a cool recap, and I am glad I made the list. 
Congrats to everyone listed above, I look forward to reading all the big stories everyone has in the works for 2020. If you need proofreading help from a "bizzarely competent noob," just let me know, haha.

Minimum amount of needed decisions in a story? on 1/14/2020 11:22:02 AM

Not every story needs a high level of branching to be successful. The following story game to mind as an example:

That being said, since this is a choose your own adventure there should be choices. I try not to string more than 2 pages in a row together without some kind of choice. That can be a gauntlet style choice, where you continue or die; a "fake choice" like Mizal talks about; or a branching choice that leads to a different storyline. You may find that your story already has natural places to make these choices, or you may have to rearrange your page breaks to fit them in...

I would read a few to see what style you like.

CYS Mentor Program - (Beta) on 1/14/2020 9:41:29 AM

Thanks Will! Either way, I would appreciate any feedback you can provide! If you are busy and miss a week or want to change things up to match your schedule better, just let me know! I saw you had a featured story, so I'll read that over the next week or so as well. 

We can work on that WIP, or I did end up making a story for the "resurrection" contest. Both would be good games to work on over the next few months. I'm looking forward to this. Thank you for your time!

CYS Mentor Program - (Beta) on 1/12/2020 8:09:54 AM

Hey, Will, I was nervous to join because I am also busy. Perhaps we can make up the team that is busy with real life? I would understand if your feedback is delayed, mine would be too. 

I am not sure how you wanted to run this, so let me know what would work best for you. Ideally, we could start by familiarizing ourselves with some of each other's writing. Then maybe I can send you something I have written in the last week every Friday (unless something comes up) so that you can give feedback on Sunday. That would allow us to discuss over the week while I am writing new material with what I have learned? 

If you want to see what my writing is starting like, I do have a relatively large body of work that was published last year. My most recent story is here:

I also have a WIP I can send you a link to, but that isn't likely to be finished in a few months. This WIP is like 40,000 words currently and is not half way done. It will be easier for me to start a new project for the resurrection contest as Bucky suggested. I was not originally going to enter, but it would be good practice.

CYS Mentor Program - (Beta) on 1/12/2020 7:26:50 AM

Actually, since this is about improving, your current skill level shouldn't matter. The goal of the mentor is to make you better, regardless of starting skill level.

Voting for Best of 2019 on 1/8/2020 1:05:57 PM

It is certainly high-quality enough to sway "swing voters".

Voting for Best of 2019 on 1/7/2020 10:52:33 PM

I feel this way with longer games that make it difficult to find the "winning" branch as well.

Voting for Best of 2019 on 1/7/2020 10:49:59 PM

I liked your analogy that my branching is like a snowflake while yours is a tree! I think both methods can produce a good story, if the writing is good. I am, admittedly, still working on that part a bit. 

As for your example, that really helps me understand your choice structure. My one quip would be that if you were to see that woman again, you wouldn't get behind her in line. Unless, of course, if every time you saw her the grocery store only had one line open at the cash register. That would probably frustrate you, make you bitter about the store, and make you debate shopping elsewhere. "Those darned people can't ever have a line that gets me out the door in under a half-hour! I'm going to Walmart!" Not that I ever felt that way about your games, but everyone has things they can work on. 

For the record I rated both Marooned on Giri Minor and Woban Island sevens. I enjoyed all of the death and funny events. I sort of felt like you took my comments about choices as "I didn't like it" which is certainly not the case.

Voting for Best of 2019 on 1/7/2020 7:30:26 PM

I haven't read this story in particular, but I feel like commenting because I get something similar on Woban island. I also feel that there is a misunderstanding of the actual comment. I don't think Camelon has an issue with a lot of shorter branches, or that they all lead to death. The issue is more with the choices. 

Sometimes the choices don't make the reader feel like they can guide the story. You have all these references and hints, but do you have choices that use the information in a way the reader can use? Once the reader sees the bodies (or finds the device or whatever) does that make the correct path obvious for logical reasons? Or is the only way to find the correct path by process of elimination? If there were UNLIMITED CHOICES could I read three side endings and deduce which choice will lead to the real ending? 

I can't speak for this game, or these references, but Woban Island was frustrating because I never could use a specific piece of info to influence choices. The information (being vague to avoid spoilers) explained why something important was moved. The issue is that no choices allowed for me to search in the location the object moved to. I was only able to get there by clicking on every branch and brute forcing my way to a branch where I was running for my life to the wrong sid dog the island. Once there, I still couldn't search. I could run or hide. Running got me killed, so I hid. Then BAM! Exactly what I was looking for was in the hole I hid in. that isn't a puzzle to me. Again, everything in that (and I assume this) game was well-written. There was no bad branch, or bad writing. There was just a lack of logic to some of the choices. 

I think Camelon is saying something similar: "...a lot of the choices lead to more random ends..."

I look forward to reading this one! I also hope this helped clarify where the issue is.


Year's End Contest - Entry Discussion Thread on 1/7/2020 3:29:49 PM

Ouch. This really does always happen though. I felt bad about one of my comments for a contest entry. I can't remember which one, but there were a few key typos that made it hard to read my suggestions. It wa sort of like every important word was auto corrected to a different one. I think it was the same one you are talking about, Bucky.