Choose-Your-Own Novel Month

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dacharya64
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So up on that navigation bar, there's a link called "An Example". It's a short example of what your choose-your-own-adventure story could look like once you've finished it all up, put it on the web, etc. For those of you wondering how to write a choose-your-own-adventure story, I'm going to be using it as the example as far as formatting/organization goes. 


 

Indentation

 


The example opens with this:


 

"Welcome to an example of a choose-your-own-adventure game! There's going to be two different examples, one with statistics and one without. Either way, are you excited about writing a choose-your-own-adventure story?

1. Yes!

That's the spirit!

2. No...

Come now, be more optimistic.

Did you want to see what a game looks like with statistics or without statistics?"


 

The numbering represents the options (1 being the first option, 2 being the second option, etc.). Then spaced over is what happens in you choose that option. If you choose yes, it says "That's the spirit!" while if you choose no it will say "Come now, be more optimistic.". And no matter what you choose, it will then say "Did you want to see what a game looks like with statistics or without statistics?" To put it simply, things that happen as a response to a choice can be set over underneath that choice.


 

 

This can be used for choices as well. For instance, when you choose a game without statistics, then you wake up in a forest. You can choose to go west, and later if you went west, can choose to throw or not throw a grenade. Without all the responses, that would look like this:


 

1. I'll go east.

2. I'll go west.

1. I'll throw the grenade.

2. I won't throw the grenade.

3. I'll do neither of these; I'm going to stay here until I find out more of what's going on.


 

So if you choose to go west, then you get the sub-options to throw the grenade or to not throw it.


 

Labels


 

You may or may not want to use labels when writing your choose-your-own-adventure game, but I find it a convenient way to avoid copying and pasting large pieces of texts and being redundant (and it makes editing so much easier!). The way it works it this: whenever you have two choices that lead to the same outcome, you can lead them both there. You use *label _______ to say something can go to this, and *goto ______ to say when this ends, go to the label marked the same way. For instance, if you have a label called dogs, and you need something to go to it, you'll put "*goto dogs" when you need it to go somewhere else and "*label dogs" where you want it to go to.


 

Here's a made-up example on how to use labels:


 

What is your favorite book?

1. 1984 by George Orwell

*goto dystopia

2. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

*label dystopia

Yes, dystopian books are quite nice.

3. I don't have a favorite book...

I see. Well onto another subject, then...



 

Statistics


 

If you do want to use statistics, the simplest way is to have certain variables that you can increase during the game. For the example, I have the stats Eloquence, Fighting, and Stealth. At the start of the story they are all 0. And depending on what you do in the past, you can influence your future. You can make a note to increase stats in your story by saying *set (for instance, *set fighting +1). Here's what that can look like:


 

When you were young, what did you enjoy doing as a pastime?


1. I honed my ability with various weapons.

*set fighting +1

2. I read the greatest speeches from the dictators of the world.

*set eloquence +1

3. I practiced blending in with my surroundings and moving without a sound.

*set stealth +1


So if you choose to read speeches, your eloquence will increase by 1 but your other stats will remain the same.


 

And these can be used later on (for instance, if you choose to talk the guy in the example out of killing you)


 

2. I'll talk him out of it.

*if eloquence = 1

With your great eloquence, you manage to explain to him why taking your life

would not be the best course of action, and instead handing you the gun

would be in his best interest. He gives you the gun, confused but compliant.

You leave the room, triumphant.

 

*if eloquence= 0

And why should he listen to you? Before you can open your mouth he lifts his gun

and fires a bullet into your brain. You are dead.

 


So if your eloquence is 1 (meaning you chose to read speeches in the past) then you will survive. If you did something else in the past, however, you will die. Stats can be used for other things as well, but this is the easiest way to make a big impact with them.

December 4, 2010 at 5:58 PM Flag Quote & Reply

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