A few thoughts on IF

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Kirsten Jacobus

Oct 26, 1990, 4:21:16 PM10/26/90

As a true non-exptert in the IF field, I've a few questions:
I had thought that IF was different from the so-called "adventure" gnre
of computer games. It Is this the case?
I have read one IF novek (novel) and it was quite an experience, but it
had little of the p flavor of the game to it. It was still very much a
sotr story. It was not goal-oriented, nor did I rack up points for doing
certain things.
The hardes part was dealing with truly non-linear narrative.

An accoma
An accompanying essage (essay) which used the same interactive fiction
software stressed the contrast between IF and adventure games.

The software was called Hyperfiction and the novel "descent into the maelstrom".
It runson a Macintosh, Ah and I can post more info if people i are interested.

David Graves

Oct 29, 1990, 3:28:11 PM10/29/90
Bryan Maloney asked:

> I had thought that IF was different from the so-called "adventure" gnre
> of computer games. It Is this the case?

Interactive Fiction is a class, of which Adventure games are a sub-class.
I would define Interactive Fiction as "fiction that the reader interacts with".
(Turning the pages of a printed book does not count as interaction).

There are two major categories of IF: Objective and Subjective IF. Bryan
mentioned "Descent into the Maelstrom", which the author calls "Hyperfiction".
This is an example of Objective IF. In works based on hypertext, you can
change your point of view, or the order of presentation of information, or
the level of detail of information you wish to see, but you do not have
an effect on the high-level content or plot of the story. In Objective IF,
the author has more control, so it would seem that it lends itself better
to more "literary" works of IF.

In Subjective IF, you have an effect on the flow of the story. Adventure
games are one sub-class of Subjective IF. Typically (but not necessarily)
you are the protagonist in the story. Adventure games usually have lots of
puzzles which keep you from finishing too soon, but this is not a requirement
of subjective IF. (It's just kind of a rut that we've gotten into for the
last decade).

So Bryan, why don't you tell us what you thought of Descent into the Maelstrom?
Before you do, though, could you locate the "Backspace" or "Delete" key?
That's the one you use to correct mistaken keystrokes! ;-)


Oct 29, 1990, 11:34:52 PM10/29/90
Do you still have this Hyperfiction ?
Second, would anyone out here know if there is a sci-fi newsgroup
available. Finally, if ANYONE has a copy of DAVID'S SLING in
Hypercard format for the Macintosh, PLEASE WRITE ME ASAP!!
I've been trying to find this for months, since the publisher stopped
giving information in this regard.
The book is David's Sling, by Marc Stiegler. Published by Baen Publishing
Enterprises. Printed in 1988.
Thanx to anyone who can help
Andy Miller/Arkain/mill...@sage.cc.purdue.edu
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