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IF Jam is coming soon

June 5, 2011

Oh bugger, I’ve procrastinated a bit long on this, haven’t I?

We have an event upcoming. I’ve mentioned it at the last couple GDCIE, but this is the first proper announcement, I suppose.

This coming weekend we will be holding our first Interactive Fiction Jam (IF Jam). The idea behind this jam is similar to that of the paper jam we held last term. Where the paper jam focused more on pure game design, the hope is the the IF jam will allow a greater focus on, simply, story and writing.

I figure we’ll run things like we did with the paper jam. This Friday, that’s Friday June 10, 2011 in the evening, around 9pm or so I’ll announce a theme, via a post here.

The IF jam proper will be Saturday June 11, 2011, after everyone has had some time to have a good think on the theme and come up with some ideas (and maybe even gotten started). We’ll book a room for the day, where everyone will meet up in the morning and hang out and write their IF. We’ll go until the evening, about 24 hours from when I make the theme announcement.

We’re going to go pretty relaxed with the rules here. This is just a chance to hang out, practice writing an interactive story, hopefully get something done, and have some fun.

As far as tools go, Inform 7 seems like a good one to recommend. It’s free and looks fairly simple to learn. It’s designed to be accessible to non-programmers, with code taking the form of  actual English sentences, so anyone who wants to join in and write something should, hopefully, have a chance.

Your IF will typically run in an interpreter, and I’ve linked Gargoyle and Spatterlight before. Stephen also points to Parchment, a tool which allows any z-code based IF (which is what Inform 7 compiles to) to be read in your browser.

Feel free to use other tools if you want, or write your own if you’re a programmer and feeling really hardcore. And if you and some other member(s) want to collaborate with each other on a piece, that’s fine too if you can get things coordinated.

This is what all those IF games we’ve been discussing has been building to. Hopefully you’ve got a bit of inspiration going. If you want to try out something a bit more traditional, in terms of IF, than what we’ve been discussing, here‘s a few that are recommended for getting started.

Nothing left to say,
Jonathan Semple

ps. If anyone has any theme suggestions, then go ahead and leave a comment or send an email to the club. Otherwise I’ll just pick one off the top of my head (I’ll make it a good one though, I promise).

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  1. June 10, 2011 at 7:53 PM
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