History Project - The Homestead Act

Player Rating3.17/8

"#490 overall, #55 for 2015"
based on 100 ratings since 10/15/2015
played 1,293 times (finished 165)

Story Difficulty6/8

"wandering through the desert"

Play Length3/8

"A nice jog down the driveway"

Maturity Level3/8

"must be at least this tall to play"
Contains content that may not be suitable for persons under age 10. If this were a movie, it would probably be between G and PG.

Try to survive!

Player Comments

This is a great idea. However, there are some things that could be fixed.

No one likes to be forced along a single path. Especially when that person has no idea which path will kill them. Let people have more choices and give them some background so their choice isn't random. Why can't you be a woodcutter, or decide to pack lightly? And perhaps you could give more info about the choices, such as telling us the wagon had gunpowder in it beforehand.

No one likes random choices. Choosing randomly between 1, 2, 3, and 4 to see if you fought off the animals is no fun.

More detail! I want to know more about me and my family, why we decided to move, who we meet along the way, and how our new life affects us. I want to know more about what it was like on the Oregon Trail, leaving an old life completely behind.

If you want to try it, I would suggest using variables. Something like stats could make the game more interesting - and it could solve the random number problem as well. Instead of choosing a number at random to see whether you fought off the beasts, seeing if a stat was high enough would be a much better way. Variables are not extremely hard to learn, and you can always ask for help.

Once again, I like the idea of the storygame. Just change a few things, and this game could really go somewhere! If you need any help, there are a lot of people here willing to help you.
-- AllThatIsGold on 1/9/2016 8:43:39 PM
I actually liked it. Projects that are meant for school (at least, I can assume) are typically short, which is one negative. There were some grammar/spelling errors, but they didn't rip me away from the story.
I've always liked learning about the pioneers and the gold rush and the Oregon Trail (insert rambling here) in history class, so I thought it would make a good game. This storygame wasn't quite what I expected, but it wasn't bad.
There are three things I wished this story had:
1. Details on characters. Who am I? What's my family like? What're my friends like?
2. Details in general. There were a few details, but I'd appreciate some more. Even the tiniest details can go a long way.
3. Another way to do the "see if you got food" or "see if you got rid of the animals killing the chickens" thing. Maybe you can choose the stats of your character and you'll be able to use variables to determine the outcome? (Trust me, it's easier than it sounds.)
4/8. It can be great if improved, but for now it's an "okay." If you do decide to take my suggestions, you can PM me or coauthor me if you need some help or a beta tester.
-- DerpBacon on 10/15/2015 6:36:31 PM
What the ....? Did you even try?
-- Nazhfa on 10/9/2018 10:09:33 AM
Please... Stop using random option, it sucks so much.
-- Sterben on 9/27/2018 9:20:26 AM
This game was great. started as a settler and moved on. It gave options to select from and I selected. But at the end I made the wrong decision.
-- shahir A choudhury on 12/21/2017 1:29:26 PM
this was a good name
-- Carlos Marte on 12/21/2017 10:24:55 AM
It was a good game it interesting because sometimes the things you think it better actually isn't so it helps you think outside the box
-- Ivania L Hernandez on 12/21/2017 10:20:59 AM
this was interesting, i like how we were able to determine the outcome of the entire situation.
-- isaiah L Pelzer on 12/21/2017 9:29:18 AM
"Start Playing!!!!
You will be playing as:
A Settler!"
The first page of any story is vital. It sets up the scene and hooks the reader (hopefully), making them want to read on. At the time of my play-through, this story has 431 plays but only 72 finishes, and you might have had a more even ratio if you'd invested a little more time into sprucing up even just the first page a little. There's pretty much no point in this page in fact; I'd just make the second page the first and leave the whole 'you're a settler' thing to the throes of deduction as the reader begins to... settle.

There are a few font changes, which always makes me sad, but you're not a comic sans cretin so I don't really mind that much.

A few disproportionate deaths of the 'turn right and die or turn left and not die' nature. I don't know though, perhaps I was supposed to guess that the crossfires in the Battle of Gettysburg would bump me off. Maybe, as I type this, the people of Pennsylvania are laughing at me for my ignorance. My American history isn't great. Scrap that. My history in general isn't great.

Sometimes I've found that presenting the pros and cons of each option (mainly if there're only two) is useful, mainly through subtle extra information that hints at why one option would be less logical than the other. For example, I didn't know the wagon was full of gunpowder when I went to put out the fire, and I could have just as easily died by not putting out the fire because it might have had vital supplies in or something (a death I found by packing too lightly; that option was actually fairly well balanced but stats based on variables would really help those kinds of decisions e.g: how much food I have so I know whether to compromise food for speed). Another one is the arbitrary choice between going into crops and animals, one of which kills the reader.

Actually, you did kind of hint at the different choices to inform the reader in a later option. When I could choose to cross the river, the language suggests that it's dangerous by stating that the river is cold and deep, so the reader should pick the 'find a way around the river' option. So that was good. The only problem is that your daughter trips and dies for no reason and it ends the game, so crossing is the best option after all apparently!

Still, a nice school project and I enjoyed the educational side of it. This had a decent amount of effort for something like homework; I've seen a lot worse in writers who are just writing for their own ends.
3/8
-- AzBaz on 6/30/2017 9:57:54 AM
I enjoyed your Oregon Trail like game from a purely informational standpoint. However, it would have been far better if you had perhaps had characters and had to get to know them and help them survive. You also could have been more in depth in your explanation of historical concepts. I hope you got a good grade on this, keep writing!
-- Orange on 1/23/2017 9:05:48 PM
Show All Comments