Let's say you have four or five options, and one of them causes you to die. However, given the information on the first page, the choice leading to you dying makes some sense.
Is this still an instant 1 rating?
Take the following scenario, for example:
Your companion is a prophetess, and she informed you on page 1 that she had a dream where you died being ran over. Later that evening, you find yourself getting brutally beaten in a large parking lot. Your options include (1) fighting back with your hands and feet, (2) screaming, (3) rolling away and running toward a police car parked at the light on the other side of the street, or (4) curling up in a ball and hoping someone comes to help you.
If you choose options 1, 2, or 4, you find a unique way to escape the situation. But if you choose option 3, when you run toward the police car, another vehicle spins out of control and runs you over, killing you.
If that happened in a game, would you consider it a justified action, since you were forewarned about being ran over, and you ran into a street? Or would it still set off rage inside you?
Of course, it's possible to just have your character end up in the hospital, but the idea being considered is if a justified page one death would still result in massive aneurysms among readers.
I'm open to it, provided the appropriate context was present. It could also be useful if you're trying to set the tone of the game. Would not give a 1 if it seemed legit and not a gotcha.
I don't feel that a first-choice death means an automatic 1/8 in most cases.
Then again, after reading a handful of stories here, I can safely say that plenty of the ones with first-choice deaths are of low enough quality that such a rating is justified regardless.
You mean hundreds, right?
As someone who has been known to give 1/8 ratings for choices on the first page that lead straight to an end game link...
I also gave "Father Leofwine Is Dead" an 8/8 rating, and every choice in that story had one option leading to an end-game link. So I guess if the quality of the writing is good, I'm willing to stay with the story and keep clicking through it. If the first page doesn't hook me, and instead gives me an early out, I may just take it.
What you're describing, though (and if I'm reading your post correctly), is using a "quick death" option to make the other 3 choices seem more high-stakes; if choosing poorly can get you killed, then it adds tension to the scene. Well, OK, that wouldn't necessarily upset me, but it seems that you could accomplish the same goal just in the way the scene is described. To me, the opening of a story is where you're trying to hook the reader, so there is a tactical risk in putting an "exit" that early in the storygame. What you're hoping is that the reader will just go back and try one of the other links, but you are literally giving them the option to end the story after the first click. Doing so doesn't make you "evil," but it is risky in my opinion.