Tag: Text-based »
There's always been something magical about text-based adventure games. I attribute it to the lack of graphics forcing us to use our imaginations, coupled with the absolute freedom the lack of visuals provides. As someone who used to mess around with my fair share of interactive reading, it's refreshing to see that people are still making stuff like The Things That Go Bump in the Night.
Players assume the role of a night shift security guard, wandering through the "compound" without a care until things take a turn. The usually quiet but still very active building has become completely still. No radio chatter. No people. Then it's time to fight monsters and solve puzzles in a desperate bid for survival. Things That Go Bump in the Night utilizes the Quest text adventure creation software, which allows for an input-less interface (i.e. clicking on "links" instead of typing) in addition to the ability to easily create custom games.
The Things That Go Bump in the Night is on the App Store right now and it won't cost a thing. Incidentally the software used to create it is also free, just in case anyone reading this is feeling particularly adventurous.
In my youth, back when I was still in a school that ranked students' progress through the educational system with numbers and our "top of the line" computer was a 256 color Macintosh (not Mac, a Macintosh), I played a lot of adventure games. Mostly because they were all that was available for our non-PC machine, but also because I really enjoyed them. A good many of them were old Sierra titles but I also dabbled quite a bit in text-based games. I still fondly remember getting my hands on a boxed collection of a lot of these things, including titles like Zork and The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. I never beat any of them, but I would sit there and try for hours.
Now, I know there are some text-based adventure games and collections of text-based adventures games on the App Store already, but WibbleQuest is something different. It does allow users to partake in plenty of interactive reading, but it's real purpose is to create said experiences using a pre-constructed framework. Designed by Orta Therox, a developer with perhaps the most awesome name in existence, it's meant to be a pain-free (relatively speaking) tool for adventure manufacturing.
Users can craft their own tales with the aid of a couple of pre-built examples, and eventually work their way up to more extensive endeavors. They probably won't be creating a masterpiece right out of the gate, but with some practice (and some handy tutorials) they could presumably make a piece of interactive fiction about anything. As a former adventure-hound, this both pleases and excites me.
WibbleQuest isn't an app in the technical (or literal) sense, however. It's a prefab framework meant to be used on a computer. Games can be transferred to an iOS device for testing or just plain playing, but the actual creation takes place on either a laptop or desktop. Not an unexpected way of doing things, as I can only imagine how irritating it would be to try programming with a given device's keyboard.
The curious, anxious or even bored can check out WibbleQuest on its official website for free.
People have created bizarre apps to turn iOS devices into all manner of random things. Random things like mirrors, fake X-ray machines, flashlights and more. Now Echolot has thrown their hat into the ring with SkyScribe, a strange little app that's probably a bit more practical than some of those other oddball apps.
Remember those weird clocks they always seem to have at stores like Brookstone? The ones that display the date, time and sometimes messages by using a small arm that wags back-and-forth and some LED lights? The ones that look like they're displaying the time in mid-air without the use of a physical display, right. Well SkyScribe does something similar with the iPhone. Users can type words or a message, set a color and speed, then wave their phone from side to side to display their chosen text.
Granted, it doesn't work exactly the same as those strange clocks. The text scrolls on the screen at a chosen speed, then it's up to the user to practice their own pacing in order to display it properly. That said, I can see this app being pretty useful in somewhat dim, crowded rooms. Such as during a concert, or in movie theater (prior to the start of the movie, of course) or something like that.
SkyScribe is available right now for a buck.