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"Linear"?

15 years ago
What does it mean when someone calls a storygame "too linear"?

"Linear"?

15 years ago

You probably didn't have a lot of choices or paths than branched off in a bunch of different directions. Your story probably read more like a proper story rather than a CYOA.

At the very least, do what the old Zork books did. Give 2 choices where one leads to an ending and the other continues the story.

"Linear"?

15 years ago
I had a number of possible choices at each page. Granted only one path led to a happy ending, but that's the mark of a horror game, not of undue linearity.

"Linear"?

15 years ago

If you are talking about that Grue game I liked it. The main thing was logic behind all the desicions the player made, and I also liked the abstract-ness behind it. If you make this longer, maybe a few more difficult logic puzzles, give clues etc... this would make a nice mystery/puzzle.

 

"Linear"?

15 years ago
The Grue game belongs to my friend, not me. My only game is the Dark and Creepy Night one.

"Linear"?

15 years ago

my mistake

"Linear"?

15 years ago
Linear means that the story is "Line Like", that it doesent have enough choices or ending or whatever. You can't really blame horror books for this, considering that most horror stories don't ussualy have a happy ending anyway, but many choices and puzzles, make a story much less linear. Atleast, if you want your story to only have one happy ending, at least try to make multiple paths to that ending, but with different things happening at each point.

"Linear"?

15 years ago
I only added a happy ending at all reluctantly. Clearly this was a mistake, and I should make all the paths lead to a horrible death, and the object of the game be to survive as long as possible.

"Linear"?

15 years ago
No your mistake was having one path.

"Linear"?

15 years ago
To clarify. You only had one path.

"Linear"?

15 years ago
I had many. Only one of them let the player survive.

"Linear"?

15 years ago
what j and rommel are saying is, it's possible for success to happen more than one. your story can have more than one happy ending and it will more than likely be interesting that way too. and the idea of adding more puzzles would be good too.

"Linear"?

15 years ago

I haven't played this particular game yet.

I would call a game extremely linear if there was one "correct" path through the game and any "wrong" choices led to an immediate ending. 

 

"Linear"?

15 years ago
Which is how it is :(

"Linear"?

15 years ago
Some of the death paths are longer than the one where the player survives. What do you call that?

"Linear"?

15 years ago

Nah, you make a good point pyth-tastic.  Your story can be anything you want it to be.  I think most of us were a little dissappointed to stumble upon a "you're dead" link when there were no clues as to what would KEEP us from dying in the story.  IT can be frustrating to choose an option and to just keep dying with no way of knowing what would save us.  Still, the story itself is a great first try for this site, but it lacks some of the things that make a story GREAT.

On this site we use linear to mean that your story has only one possible outcome and no way to predict how to get to that outcome.  One wrong flip-a-coin choice and your dead.  Your story is less story, and more random events that happen.  that doesn't make it WRONG, just less engaging to us as your audience.

Hope you write more!  You have a great style!

march

"Linear"?

15 years ago
Full agreement.

"Linear"?

15 years ago
I tried as much as possible to make the reserved, cautious choices win out, such as turning on the light before you rush down the darkened staircase and investigating the seemingly-asleep homeless man before you try the questionably rusty ladder. If I do write more, I may just pull through on my intention to do a horror story where none of the choices win, and see how long it takes readers to notice. At least it won't get called linear (I hope).

"Linear"?

15 years ago
Don't put TOO much faith in the community. There are alot of 12 year olds :)

"Linear"?

15 years ago
*Moved this to the lounge. I think its a very important topic and isn't a newbiesh question at all.

"Linear"?

15 years ago
Thank you. :)

As to putting faith in the community, I believe I've been taught my lesson in that regard.

"Linear"?

15 years ago
For your next story try to make no more then one death link on a page.  That should improve it. Also try to keep to 3 or more links a page.  This makes you write less of a linear story.  (Obviously eventually all the links on a page will lead to death or you'd never finish)

"Linear"?

14 years ago
Well... I don't know what people's thoughts are about linearity on this site. Because, that killer midget game has several endings, several good and bad, but because they don't continue on as long as the considered TRUE ending, many have called it linear. Though, I don't agree, I haven't played your story, I'll try it and see how it's linear.

"Linear"?

14 years ago
Okay, trying it out, I can safely say that it is linear. How? Well, for starters, on the first page, there are three choices. Instead of one or two of these choices leading you on a different path, or an alternate path towards the true ending, they both just kill you, instantly, bad idea for just about any story game (unless the writer wanted it to be random...). Second, one of the choices doesn't make sense why it killed me (the rust ladder) if you choose it first, you slip and die, but if you do the hobo choice first and then the ladder, suddenly my player character can catch himself before he falls to his doom.

Why though? Who knows.

It's got good writing though, which helps with the instant deaths but still. I also don't like that my character slip on an unseen object, just to kill him with that choice, that was cruel.

Well, thats my two cents. Maybe you should talk to 3J or Madglee on this subject, after all they have made great non-linear stories and could defiantly help you with the whole, not being linear thing.

"Linear"?

14 years ago

Thanks Leon, although putting me and madglee in the same sentence isn't necesarry.  He's an amazing writer, I'm still a journeyman.  Again linearity is also just putting the character into a position where (s)he feels like they've been given a choice.  Mattias the One Knight is a pseudo linear story, same with the Tower and Starwars.. You wouldn't know it though because I've given the illusion of choice.

Just play around and see what you can do.

"Linear"?

14 years ago
Why though? Who knows.

Play it again and read the narration more carefully this time. If you choose the questionable ladder right off the bat, the link is worded in such a way as to sound very dubious, and your character is not yet cautious enough to survive. Once you've seen the decapitated bum, you're much less inclined to rush into things headlong, and the link text reflects that.

When does your character slip on an unseen object? In the streetlight choice? Yes; that was meant pretty much solely as a way to be cruel to the reader. I make no excuses for it. It is what it is: cruel, arbitrary death.

"Linear"?

14 years ago
Still though, Pyth.  Death links on the first page is almost never a good idea.  Try to develop your story a bit more.

"Linear"?

14 years ago
Yeah, about the Illusion of choice, well, 3J. You did a great job at it!

"Linear"?

14 years ago
Thx man, that means alot to me!

"Linear"?

14 years ago
Because of your saying that putting a death link on early pages is a bad idea, jjj, it made me rethink something and instead of having the reader killed on a link i made it so that they would get injured which affected the game only in the long run...... i also added two choices which would cause the reader to be more or less affected..

"Linear"?

14 years ago
Great idea!! Killing people early on is no good.  Which story is this?

"Linear"?

14 years ago

The biggest problem with death links on the first page is that then people can/will rate your story after having read only one page. 

Sure, they ought to go play it again, but sometimes you'll get the people who sat down all nice and ready to be entertained for a few minutes and they read the introductions and--bam- it's over.  Their rating is likely to reflect a certain amount of disappointment.