Interactive Fiction

What is IF? | History | IF Creations | Projects | Other Contributions | Read my Blog

Versión en Español aquí


Interactive Fiction
Computer Game, using text-only interface, so that the player has to type verbal commands in order to play. They were among the first computer games. Also called Adventure Games.
Adventure
Generic for the main plot of an Interactive Fiction Game.
Parser
Source code and/or Programming Language used to code an adventure game.
NPC
Non-player character. Anything (semi)sentient that you may encounter on an adventure game. It usually reacts to your actions: an animal, a person, a robot, a computer.

"Whaat?..."

99,99999999% non-computing humanity's reaction when questioned wether they know what an Adventure Game is.


What is IF About?

As the above definition explains, it initially was a computer game form (in fact, one of the first forms), but in due time and with the genre's evolution it became a new media for the literary expression.

Of course, most of the current so called Interactive Fiction (IF) is mostly of ludic purpose, but some IF works are so rich in narrative that they are considered a completely new literary form (it has less than de 30 years: Colossal Cave Adventure, Willie Crowther & Don Woods, 1975-76).

The main difference between conventional literature ("lineal narrative") and interactive literature ("potential narratives"), is the story's variation through the player's/reader's interaction. To know more, see:

IF as a Game

IF as Literature

History: Me and IF

It all began, back to the very begining, on an old school's friends project; it was conceived among friends, never really developed, then abadoned for university pursuits, and finally brought back on my own first professional years (computing and such, not quite original, I know).

And so it was that, still way back (July 1998), I coded my first adventure game.

Well... such as it was. I didn't had many resources, back then: no Internet access, hardly a PC to work on... so (knowing zilch about parser languages) I dusted off an old 80's game programming theory book (..!..) and made up a little program on QBasic 1.1 (God, was it all precarious) with the bones of an IF: parser, places, objects, vocabulary and a few NPCs (actually, objects + vocabulary).

The resulting mongrel of a game was played and criticiced by a few close friends and relations... but I never persued it any further.

Six years later, on or around 2004, my interest on IF has revived... so I resurrected said adventure, using InformATE (spanish library for Inform 6.30).

By the way, I found out that there are more wacos out there quite interested in IF: see CAAD on Spanish and PARSIFAL ...for almost any other language (including English, of course).

IF Creations

So far, I've created the following Adventure Games:

Keep in mind: these games are in Spanish, and I won't be translating them to English any time soon... To play this games right at your PC, you'll need a Z5 interpreter program. You may download each game's Windows installer or if you preffer to, download the ZIP distirbution file and then look for the interpreter of your choosing (for Windows, LINUX or what have you) on Inform web page, at the interpreters page. If you don't want to install the interpreter, the distribution files (both Win install and ZIP) allow you to play using a web page, but you'll need a Java Runtime installed.

Have fun...!

Projects

Other Contributions

Besides coughing up a few games, I've made a few minor contributions to the Spanish IF scene. Of course, almost all these works are in Spanish, except my interview on SPAG #49 fanzine, and will almost certainly not be translated to English ever.

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