Mystic_Warrior, The Apprentice Scrivener
Hi there! My CYS name is Mystic Warrior, so feel free to call me that or any other variation of my name you prefer.
So far, I've written five storygames:
(For those of you who are in the midst of playing A Hunted and Haunted Halloween, here's a walkthrough)
Hope you enjoy them!
For End Master's Manifest Destiny Contest.
"Welcome to the experiment. A man is dead, and you have to find his killer. There will be a list of rules in your room once this briefing is over, but all you really need to know is this: There are five of you, but only one can solve the mystery. You will be given five days. Each night, one of you will die - no more, no less.
Ready? Even if you're not, it doesn't matter. You're in my world now."
This is also a War on Intfiction contribution.
Note: Aside from a few references to Dreamtruder characters/ events, this storygame is a standalone.
It is my first time writing a mystery storygame on this site, so I would appreciate if you could leave feedback on whether this mystery was too easy/ difficult to solve. If you find yourself stuck, don't hesitate to message me directly. That being said, do not feel discouraged if you are bewildered at first; as you progress further in the game, the clues and secrets would make everything clearer. Eventually, the secrets you find would allow you to make sense of most clues except a few, and these would point to the killer.
Make use of the notebook, which would keep track of the information you gained from the interviews and the secrets you may find out. Also, check the item descriptions of all the objects since some of these would have to be 'used' in order to access some clues.
Once you've solved the mystery, there are 3 possible endings you could get. Only one of these actually results in returning back to the 'real world'. If you're looking for this 'true ending', it requires you to play through the last of the five days rather than just skipping to the end and guessing the answer.
Good luck surviving the Halloween experiment!
Beneath the seas, hidden from the Ones Above, our society goes about our normal, routinely lives. I cannot help but feel bored with all that is going on, until I find the letter. A letter that sends me on a journey to deliver a magical item to the group of people that have been villainized over the years, the letter that challenges everything I thought I knew. But which side is on the side of good? How can I break out of the only world I have ever known? Should I join the heroic villains or the villanous hero? I have finally gotten the adventure I always needed, but not exactly the one I wanted.
Note: This game was created for Camelon's break contest. During the part where a specialist is assigned to the breakers, there are three different paths (Lawbreaker, Breaker of People and Breaker and Enterer). Due to time constraints, for those who would like to know, Breaker of People is the longest path, followed by Lawbreaker and Breaker and Enterer, but aside from the epilogues, it all leads to the same chapter 5. As before, feel free to comment or message me if you encounter any issues or problems that I should fix.
"The delicate balance between the dream world and the real world is disrupted. You intruded and messed up the dream of an innocent. By talking about this with an Unknowing, the possibility of the dreamstage being unveiled is now greater than ever. The Jury has made a decision - we have no choice but to send you to The Jungle..."
Life was hard, balancing work and relaxation. Then the nightmares came, and all I ever wanted was to be free of them. Yet, I never accounted for this - finding out the truth about the dream world, exploring the vast plane of the imagination...only to be whisked away to the longest nightmare ever.
Think a jungle's bad? Try a fictional jungle, where literally anything can happen, and the most creative minds have conspired to give you a hard time.
Note: This game was created for Mizal's 'Welcome to the Jungle' contest. There are several epilogues, and while the main one is the normal Dreamtruder path, others include Dream director, Dreamcaster, Dreamediator, and Dreamhero. Fancy a challenge? Try completing the Jungle challenge without picking up any dreampowers - it's possible, but requires a bit of thinking and planning ahead. Also, for some items, click the 'use' button as a link would not be provided (if this is the case, it would be specified in the object description)
Since this would be my first published storygame, I am still relatively new to this. Feel free to message me or spam the comments if you encounter any issues, have any suggestions for improvement, or just have something you want to say.
A quest doomed from the start. A man with an unwavering yet unusual moral compass. A daughter in the darkest depths of the night sky.
It isn't truly over until all hope is lost.
'Good and evil, heroes and villains… they are all fantasies created by the world. There are only two types of people: the people you care about, and the people you don’t.'
Arnold Cyzila's best life may have been long since over, but he would do anything to save his daughter from the clutches of her confinement. Even stealing an airplane, killing the innocent, and entering a dangerous world where death is almost guaranteed.
[Warning: There are some mentions of murder, deaths and several dark themes, so if those things make you uncomfortable, perhaps it is better not to read this story.]
Note: I initially did not plan on joining this contest, yet I'm glad I did since it has motivated me to publish a new storygame. It is related to Dreamtruder in a way… well, you’ll see. While this story may not be as long as my previous two, it was interesting to write a shorter project.
Just like all my other storygames, commenting and rating this story are both highly welcomed and appreciated. Also, as I have used quite a lot of variables in several fight scenes, let me know if you ever encounter a page where there are no visible links.
Lastly, there are a few different epilogues but the 'main' one would be an epilogue which mirrors the start of the story (you'll know it when you see it). There are three possible ways to reach that. Even though I may consider it to be the true ending, it is not a typical happy ending.
For EndMaster's Prompt Contest
Prompt: A story involving an old Oriental style setting
A simple quest for revenge turns into a deadly competition.
The Shi Empires, governed by the Ten Emperors, appear to be undefeatable. But Liu Longyi's desire to avenge Mother tranports her to four deadly battles, marked by the sudden appearance of a chaos deity.
As she battles competitors for the throne, Liu Longyi learns the truth about the mighty Shi Empires, along with the most closely guarded secret of Yue Palace.
1. This story makes use of delayed consequences, so replaying would grant different outcomes, even if they aren't always visible at first.
2. There are some instances of violent and slightly mature content, so reader's discretion is advised.
3. If you prefer to read the storygame in the same browser, you could click the title page instead of the 'play' button.
Hope you enjoy the storygame!
If you don't like letters,
extremely short stories or cliched moral lessons, don't read this. I found it when I was browsing through the old storygames I had created a long time ago. If I'm not mistaken, this was made for Mizal's Tiny 'Topias jam although I never really thought it was good enough to add to the thread. I don't think I'll publish this, but it's completed if anyone happens to browse my profile and wants to read it.
On a dark and chilly night, you visit the Skeleton to ask for hints in order to solve the mystery of 'A Hunted and Haunted Halloween'.
If you find yourself stuck while trying to complete A Hunted and Haunted Halloween, this is the guide for you! Since it is a walkthrough, there are bound to be spoilers, so I recommend reading the storygame before referring to this.
Do let me know if you find any inconsistencies between the storygame and this walkthrough. As this would remain unpublished, I should be able to fix errors rather quickly.
That's all from me. Enjoy!
Recent PostsThe OFFICIAL, COMPREHENSIVE, CYS ET SURVEY on 2/5/2023 12:36:32 PM
I've filled it out.
The Owl's Challenge - Week Three on 1/19/2023 6:24:32 PM
When I saw this word prompt, I immediately thought of the threads in the forums, which shows how much of an influence CYS has considering I didn't know that second meaning of the word before joining the site.
Is this considered an entry to this challenge? Well, I guess since we can write as much or as little as we want, a sentence about 'thread' qualifies. Even if it's a different kind of thread with an implied reference to the correct thread. That being said, I wonder if writing 1 sentence (or maybe even word) per prompt would be a dishonorable way to steal 5 points each week.
Prompt Contest Progress Thread on 1/11/2023 5:03:11 AM
I have to say, that's quite an intriguing worldbuilding concept. Even though you got a different prompt in the end, I'm sure you could still find some way to weave it into the story if you want to.
And I know consistency is super important especially for longer projects, so if you're motivated by deadlines, setting mini-deadlines for specific branches or plot points has been a helpful technique for me. But you're on the right track with planning to finish early in case life gets in the way.
As for my entry, I'm rather behind schedule and haven't written nearly as much as I'd have liked. Also, there a really strong writer who's apparently trying to write a better storygame than me, and as much as I hate to admit it, they're currently ahead. But don't worry, I'll catch up soon enough.
I'm starting to realize I've incorporated elements from different prompts into my storygame. So even if I had chosen a different one, I could have written the exact same storygame and no one would be any wiser. But there's definitely at least one which is more relevant than my current prompt.
Best of luck with your storygame and I hope this thread keeps you motivated!
Everything you ever wanted to know about CYS on 1/11/2023 4:54:21 AM
Thank you for the explanation, Celicni! And props to Maz too. It's truly interesting to find out these things about the site and how the different systems work.
Also, I just realized that if a storygame has fewer than 50 ratings, the adjusted one will be 0.00. Which makes sense given the calculation here.
The Owl's Challenge - Week Two on 1/10/2023 6:51:55 PM
It's currently in a draft document, so I'm unsure whether to add it into the final piece or remove it entirely. But I guess I'll decide during my next editing/ rewrite session.
Everything you ever wanted to know about CYS on 1/10/2023 6:48:24 PM
That's pretty interesting, thanks! For some reason, I never really knew there were adjusted ratings lol, and always thought the storygame length was the only thing you could hover over.
The Owl's Challenge - Week Two on 1/10/2023 6:45:17 PM
Because not many people read, I'm going to add an excerpt I've written today while inspired by this prompt.
I slam the trunk shut. I can’t do this. I never could. All my life, I had this idea of what my future would be; a plan to achieve perfection or whatever the closest version of it is. But none of this was supposed to happen.
It doesn’t erase the fact that it did.
I’m taunted by the silver certificate in its glass case. It’s a reminder of who I used to be: the scholar who performed the most advanced spells in a day. Before I know what I’m doing, I’ve ripped it into shreds, crushing its remnants in my fist. It’s almost cathartic. So I smash trophies and shatter glass just to feel it tear into my skin. I trample on pages and pages worth of notes—who cares, now I’m never going to take that examination or analyze the lyrics of that spell?
A shiver rises in my chest. I warm my hands over the fireplace, longing for the heat to burn the hollow, aching emptiness inside. And because I crave self-destruction, I let my fingers linger a little too close to the flames until I can bear it no more.
What a fool I was, thinking I could achieve the impossible. How foolish. How stupid. How worthless.
I reach for the closest item—a placeholder I’ve gotten for surviving my first year at the Academy—and strike it against the wall. It breaks into two. But somehow, the thrill of fury has long since cooled and I no longer find joy in seeing my surroundings as broken as I am.
Fragments of glass lay at my feet. They reflect distorted, unnatural versions of the world around me. Looking around, there’s only one thing I haven’t touched. The knife. I bring the blade to my neck, feeling the stinging kiss of cold metal—
No. This is stupid. This is far worse than anything I can ever do.
Everything you ever wanted to know about CYS on 1/10/2023 6:28:13 PM
Yeah I doubt we need to worry about people optimizing commendations, and as Thara said, active members being incentivized to do productive things hardly harms the site.
Personally, as much as I enjoy finding out about all this information (thank you Celicni and Ford!), if my storygame takes over 62k words to tell, I definitely won't limit myself due to commendations. And even if there happens to be a commendation war between orders, an influx of 29k storygames can only be seen as a benefit.
But I'm all for longer games getting more comms. Totally no bias here whatsoever.
Edit: If any of you have time, I'd like to find out how the Top Storygames (Overall) list works. I'm guessing you'd need a certain number of ratings to get there, and this probably does something to the ranking, but it's a bit strange to see some games with ratings of 5 higher than those with 6 or 7.
2023 resolutions on 1/8/2023 4:46:54 PM
Wow, I'm really sorry you're having to go through this. But like Miz said, yeah, it's a good thing that you're deciding to stay put until college.
I know you said this was just to rant, but having been through a (tbh much, much less severe) version of what you're going through, I'm going to list a few things that's helped me. Hopefully it'll be of some use to you too.
Small Concessions & Persuasive Techniques
I recommend asking your parents for 'small concessions' where possible, in order to make your living situation more tolerable in the meantime. Maybe think of what things will make the situation easier to deal with and how you could frame these so they'll grant it? Here are some potential persuasive tips I've personally used.
Door in the face technique
Start with a big request they reject, then they will be more likely to accept a smaller request.
I actually used this on my parents lol. Back when I was in high school, I shared a room with my sister and would use a communal area as a study space. Obviously, this wasn't optimal because I was—and still am—quite uncomfortable writing when someone's watching me. I also didn't want my family to find out about CYS as they won't approve of the site culture. Once, I remember being on the verge of burnout and had to hold in tears the whole day after getting an 82% for a math test (we're the sort of family where anything below 90% is a 'fail') and I didn’t want to make the rest of my family worry.
But back to the topic, I wanted my own personal space, so I asked them for the entire top floor (something like an attic) to be converted to my bedroom and study space. I volunteered to clean it up too. They disagreed, saying it'll be too much work to do so and probably trigger my allergies, which is when I offered the alternative of using the smaller guest bedroom. Then I managed to finally get my own study space, which was the place I wrote almost all of my storygames!
Obviously, this tip isn't very strong on its own so combine it with the next two for best results.
Manipulate core values
Alright, I admit the word 'manipulate' makes this sound a little evil, but hey, whatever it takes to regain control of your life, right?
Long story short, I read this really good book (Captivate by Vanessa Van Edwards) about social science, and most people value at least 1 of 6 core things:
- Love – giving affection, acceptance, and likability
- Service – giving support, care, and warmth to provide comfort
- Status – giving responsibility, praise, and titles to evoke pride
- Money – giving coin, currency, or tokens that have been assigned value
- Goods – giving tangible products, objects, or materials
- Information – giving advice, ideas, opinions, and teaching
Just a fyi, most people tend to give a lot of what they want to receive (kinda like love languages), so for instance, if someone performs lots of services for you they probably want to receive it too.
Now, how does this apply? Well your parents probably fall into one of these categories. In fact, I suspect it could be status (there are a number of parents who live vicariously through their children's accomplishments) but it could be something else too. Once you've identified which one your parents fall into, it's time to convince them to grant you small concessions based on their core value.
The easy way to do this is to say, "If you grant me xxx, you will get yyy." This could be as simple as 'granting me my own study space would enable me to get higher grades, which is what you’ve always wanted' (status = they get to brag to other parents about your grades) or as complex as 'enabling me to go abroad for university increases my likelihood of a high paying job and greater career prospects, which will eventually benefit you in the future' (money and goods = they will receive a comfortable future).
I analyzed my mum and decided hers was information, so I basically took her advice and lectures, and connected them to my goal. Not only did this make her feel like her information is valued, but it's also harder for her to dispute her own logic due to the reconfirmation bias. For instance, when she said I needed to take more responsibility, I connected this to the idea of having my own personal space because it'll force me to be responsible for my study area.
Note: if you aren't sure which category your parents fall into, use as many of these core values as you can to get what you want.
Play to their OCEAN personality traits
This stands for:
- Openness - how open someone is to new ideas and experiences
- Conscientiousness - how much emphasis someone puts on self-discipline and organization
- Extroversion - whether someone gets energy from or is drained by socializing
- Agreeableness - how much you value cooperation and forgiveness
- Neuroticism - how much you tend to worry
Search up for more definitions if you are unsure of any of these, but it is very helpful when it comes to persuading someone. Now I want you to rank both your parents in each category, assigning high, middle, and low scores (someone with high openness craves new opportunities and someone with low doesn't, etc).
The way this works is you have to tailor persuasive arguments based on this criteria. My dad is a low openness person (prefers to stick to habits and routines) while my mum is the opposite (finds new challenges exciting). So when I convinced them to let me study overseas, along with the factual arguments, I told my dad about the things which would stay the same (I'll still talk to you all very often, you'll be the first to know if anything bad happens, etc) and I told my mum about all the new, exciting opportunities (I'll be able to mature and develop, you'll be able to visit me and have cool holidays in a different country, etc). This helped both of them become more accepting of the idea.
Conscientiousness is about how structured your persuasive argument should be for your parents. If they're high in this category, that means you should set out rules and routines for the new change along with why it's important to you and them. (e.g. if you grant me x numbers of screen-time, it would serve as a motivation to study y number of hours, but in the event I go overboard you can confiscate my phone for a week).
Extroversion… I'm not exactly sure how it relates here tbh. Maybe it's about how much time you can spend persuading them before they get annoyed by you hanging around. But judging by how they don't give you any personal space, they kinda sound like extroverts. So good luck I guess.
Agreeableness, again, I'm not entirely sure how to implement since they don't sound big on compromise, but maybe frame things like version a = you give me what I want and you get what you desire, version b = you don't give me this and the situation doesn't improve for you. This would work if they’re the type that operates from a scarcity mindset commonly found in competitive parents (in order for me to win, others have to lose or vice versa).
Lastly, I think neurotism is very important. It was for my parents at least. They're pretty neurotic people and tend to worry very easily, so I had to take apart each of their worries and tell them why these wouldn't happen, along with bombarding them with an array of back up plans for my back up plans. Play to their beliefs and what they view as ‘safe’ or ‘good’. But if they're not too neurotic and don't tend to worry much, make sure you don't bring up a ton of 'this might go wrong so I'll do this' as it'll cause them to unnecessarily worry.
Alright now you've improved your living situation a tiny bit. What's the next step?
Get A Non-Studying Hobby
I can definitely relate to 'feeling like you always have to perform for the expectations of others' to the point where I've probably somewhat internalized this belief. I mean, why else do you think I write all these large storygames? (Besides writing being fun ofc). But just remember that your achievements and failing to live up to unrealistic expectations do not define your worth, which is a lesson I'm still trying to learn if I'm being honest.
The best way to stop feeling under constant pressure is to get a relaxing hobby. Preferably something you can do for the sake of having fun, and not something you feel obliged to ‘excel’ at. You probably already know what mine is: writing. Well at first it was reading, and that was a form of escapism for me to the point where I spent entire lunch breaks in the library just devouring CYS storygames. Then it turned into writing. This gave me the opportunity to do something solely for fun—not for the sake of pleasing anyone or living up to someone else's standard. And I loved losing myself in my writing.
In a way, I realize it's all thanks to Mizal's noob contest, which gave me a fun reason to wake up early each morning. I had a renewed sense of purpose beyond ‘study, complete assignments, take exams, get good grades, and repeat’. That was also the first long project I ever attempted. After being forced to assume the roles of 'model student' and 'exemplary older sister', writing and being on CYS gave me the opportunity to have an identity away from all that. And fine, I'll also admit that hanging out on CYS felt like a little way of rebelling when I was younger lol.
So here's my advice: find something fun that gives your life meaning. It would really help so much, especially if you could do something that enables you to express yourself or discover your identity. This hobby would be yours alone and you do not have to share it with your family, otherwise they might set standards of 'good' and 'bad' and suck out all the fun.
Tip: the 'studying' excuse never fails. If you can establish yourself as a super hard worker and have good grades to show for it, just say you have an exam and you'll get uninterrupted free time to 'study'. I've written many storygames that way. They keep thinking I'm overworking myself haha. Oh, and if you haven't already, I definitely recommend asking for your own study room.
If you can, also try to convince them to let you use a mobile device for studying too since that gives you access to CYS and the internet. To do this, maybe join some school societies that would make them feel like you’re achieving things (e.g. prefects, debate club, or any academics-related stuff. Or maybe sports/ music stuff if you’re good at that because where I come from, it gives you access to all kinds of scholarships which parents just love). Then use the society as an excuse to get a bit of screen time, saying you have to communicate with other people for your duties in the club, and once they get used to you using your phone more and more often, eventually they will be more open to the idea of you keeping it. Show them you know how to control your phone usage and don't let it affect your grades. Another idea is to convince them of the importance of study groups, which would again give you somewhat unlimited access to a device and sometimes you might need to lie about an ‘exam’ and call a friend to vouch for you. If the situation is that dire, I mean.
Prepare for the future
I know it seems like many things may be out of your control, but find ways to focus on the things you can.
Living on your own or with a different family for university/ college is not easy, so I recommend getting a head start. Learn to cook simple dishes, research the area you're going to be staying in, and look for courses you'll like to study. This enables you to take a bit of control over your life and gives you something to look forward to in the future. In a way, it's like a small act of rebellion too.
A lot of potential problems might arise too, and not to scare you or anything but if your parents are not the type you can discuss future issues with, then it's best to prepare contingency plans. Examples include: what to do in medical emergencies, how to handle things like finances and rent, etc. And find an external support system if you can. For instance, if you want to you could always ask CYS members for advice here, but just bear in mind there might be some trolling responses you'll have to take with a grain of salt. And it's the internet so anyone can access the information you put out.
I hope you can find ways to somewhat create joy in your current situation, while standing up for yourself in the things that matter using the tips I've put above. There are plenty of other persuasion techniques out there if the ones I've stated don't work (like I know a friend who made contracts with her parents saying she'll get a certain grade in exchange for a reward, but idk how helpful that'll be if the general expectation is for you to get good grades anyway). And definitely look for hobbies you can do and enjoy which will make time pass by more quickly.
Best of luck with everything! :)
Hello, I'm pretty new and have a couple questions. on 1/5/2023 7:43:29 AM
Welcome to CYS!
Here are a few tips to add pictures and format them, but it only covers the basics so let us know what you're attempting to do if you need more help.
The simplest way is to use html. Copy and paste wherever you want your picture to be, and replace 'insertpicturehere' with the image address. This works for most images online.
If your picture is downloaded, you can use an app like imgur.com to upload it, then right click the image and get the image address from there.
There is, of course, another way: go to the 'My Stuff' section on the left hand side of your screen, then click 'pictures'. This allows you to upload images and later add them to your storygame. However, there is a size restriction for the files you can upload, and as it's a much more inconvenient process, I wouldn't use this method unless you're uploading a profile pic/ picture for an item in your storygame.
I'm not much of an expert in scripting-like stuff, so if you're looking to do something complex like the examples Mizal listed, this probably wouldn't be useful. But for basic things like centering your image, you can use:
Together with the previous part, it might look something like this:
For more complex formatting, you can browse through this list of articles and see if anything helps.
I noticed you've already figured out how to change colors and fonts in your test storygame, so I won't delve too much into this, but here's a helpful article for basic html and text formatting. It also covers images at the end if you're still confused about that.
Hopefully this helps, and best of luck with creating your story! Definitely check out the storygames Mizal mentioned to get a better idea of what the site is capable of.