Interactive Fiction Project

Due Dates:

October 31
Inform7 Project 1.0 (completed in class)

November 7
Inform7 Project 2.0; Paper, first draft (both saved to Dropbox prior to class)

November 14
Inform7 Project 3.0; Paper, second draft (both saved to Dropbox prior to class)

November 18 (noon)
Final Inform7 and Paper Due (both saved to Dropbox prior to class)

We've read about the history of Interactive Fiction (IF), its historical precursors, and about the basic components of IF. Using the Inform7 system, you will work with one other person to design a piece of IF. Your project can be inspired by a previous work of IF or even by one of the other works of electronic literature that we've discussed in class. It can also be inspired by something we have not read in class. Regardless of its inspiration, your IF should incorporate some of the ideas from Nick Montfort's text Twisty Little Passages and should create a meaningful and relatively complex experience for the interactor.

In addition to designing this piece of interactive fiction, each pair of students will write a paper describing and explaining what you've created. Your paper will be roughly 1000 words (four pages double-spaced) and will:

1) Explain the inspiration for your project.

2) Explain your project in the terms laid out by Montfort in Twisty Little Passages. You may choose to describe your game in terms of the basic components of IF (laid out in Chapter 1), or in terms of Montfort's discussion of riddles, or you might compare your game to one of the examples of IF he discusses in the text.

3) Explain how you incorporated feedback that you received during the testing phase. Your classmates will play the various versions of your game, and you will incorporate the feedback you receive during these "user tests." Your paper should explain what changes you made and how you addressed this feedback.

Grade Criteria
When responding to these projects, Eric and I will be asking:

  • Does your project show evidence that you have understood and made use Montfort's discussion of IF in Twisty Little Passages?
  • Does your project take advantage of the Inform7 system? Does it provide a meaningful and relatively complex experience for the interactor?
  • Does your paper explain the inspiration for your project, how it works, and how you've incorporated feedback?
  • Was your project submitted on time? (I do not accept late work.)
  • Does your paper observe the word limit?
  • Does your paper have minimal grammatical and/or structural problems?