Wednesday 15 August 2012

Twine - A useful tool for interactive narrative

Just discovered Twine by Chris Klimas (yes it's been out there a while!)

It's a free tool for writing interactive narrative with a shallow learning curve and wysiwyg interface.

It doesn't help with the 'comic' presentation or the game elements but has enabled me to actually start something instead of planning and theorising.

Here's the map of my first test sequence.

It's not exactly Firetop Mountain!

Next steps
Flesh out the text events - Where I think about the information and mood each scene contains.
Sketch out the sequences - Where I start to think about visual story telling and panel sequence.
Colour and ink artwork - Where I refine the character design, environment art and camera angles.

At the end of this I will have sense of what the final experience might be like, developed the aesthetic, learned a bit about interactive story telling and have a better understanding of production time (from which I can extrapolate how long a full comic might take to make)

I aim to publish these steps so you can see progression.

Saturday 11 August 2012

The size of it

Initiated as a personal project I have just been having fun with the idea of an interactive comic and the creation of the Mysterious Path game world (which is still currently all still stuck in my sketchbooks). But the designer in me is feeling the need to define the problem I am trying to solve!

Like every good dungeoneer I've made a map. This (incomplete) map shows the key components identified so far:

1) The comic reader
2) The battle engine
3) Mini games & skills tests
4) Game maps
5) Character stats and inventory
6) Object & spell management
7) Hygene stuff (settings, home screen etc...)

I'll post in more detail about some of these elements later.

I'm getting carried away... and it's growing fast. No doubt I will need to reduce this 'wish list' for a prototype or minimum viable product.

Note to self: I will also need to consider an interface for content production. If I am to tell graphically rich, interactive stories I am going to need some impressive tools to make it as painless as possible.

Monday 6 August 2012

Wizard Kings

Narcolep of Dreams,  Multifax the Many, Metamorphix the Shapeless & others.

The wizard kings don't like each other very much. In fact they have been warring for thousands of years, and so they have created many magical-post-apocalyptic scenes for our hero to wander through.

These are sketch book scamps, scanned and coloured with trackpad-finger-painting in photoshop.

Sunday 5 August 2012

Responsive comic layout

For the story telling portion of the 'game' I want to build on Scott McCloud's infinite canvas principles (An exquisite example of which can be found over at Daniel Lieske's Wormworld Saga). I will also be borrowing a principle from modern web development, responsive design. By creating a 'responsive' comic layout, where panels would dynamically resize/reflow, readers would get the best reading conditions for their chosen device.

I'm sure this will introduce all sorts of limitations and complexity but...

Friday 3 August 2012

Mood music

This guy is so going to compose the theme music! Be sure to check out the rest of the album here.

Thursday 2 August 2012


Sketch book scan and colour test. Later will have some fun with the species, culture and lifecyle of the goblinoid.