Announce: IF Demo Fair

Do you have a vision of the (or a) future of interactive fiction that you would like to share with interested players, authors, implementers and theorists?

The IF Demo Fair will be running during PAX East (Boston, March 11-13), showcasing new and interesting demonstrations in the IF world.

These don’t need to be polished, complete games, just pieces that show off your concept. We’re particularly interested in demonstrations that explore one of our themes:

  • novel ways to interact with in-game characters
  • innovative user interfaces for text/story-based games

But if you have a great idea that doesn’t match either of these themes, send it anyway! We welcome any demonstration that can reasonably be construed as relating to interactive fiction and storytelling: traditional parser-based IF, works with multimedia and graphical components, choose-your-own-adventure, or interactive poetry.

Entries in the Fair will be set up on laptops in the IF suite for players to explore. Saturday afternoon, there will also be an official playthrough in the Alcott Conference Room at the Westin, where we will go through all the entries on a projector screen (exact time TBA).

Authors who are there with their submissions are welcome (indeed, encouraged) to talk briefly about their design concepts.

Note that this is not an official PAX event. No badges are required to attend or participate.

Entry restrictions. This is not a competition, and there are no judges or prizes. Authors who have submitted content are welcome to comment on each other’s work. The only restriction is that you must be willing to have your work showcased in a public forum, and presented or linked from a website afterward.

Intent to enter: Friday, February 18. Email me ( with your intent to enter and include your technical requirements, answering these questions:

  • does your project need software to run other than a standard IF interpreter?
  • is it restricted to one OS?
  • will your project need internet access to run?
  • are you going to be present in person to install your project and/or present it on your own device?

I reserve the right to refuse an entry that is technically infeasible for us to present, but will do my best to accommodate reasonable requests.

Submission: Sunday, March 6. Email me ( your project or a link to where it lives on the web, and installation instructions.

Optionally, you may also submit an author’s note (no more than about 500 words, please) explaining the background of your project, anything you want players to know about it, and your hopes/expectations for the project.

Feedback for authors. Forms for anonymous feedback will be available both in the IF Suite and during the live presentation. Players and audience members who would like to share their thoughts without attribution can do so via these forms.

After the event, we’ll provide website coverage for the submissions, with links to author projects, as well as an article on the event in SPAG.

13 thoughts on “Announce: IF Demo Fair”

  1. Sweet!

    Will you also make the source code available, if possible? I think it might be neat for attendees to be able to read code where possible.

    1. I’m happy for people to submit it and provide a place to share it, but I didn’t want to require it, in case people want to show off stuff that is proprietary or huge or still in development.

      1. Great — that’s what I was looking for. (I managed to use the word “possible” twice in my post without communicating in any way that I meant “if the author wants to provide it.”)

        This should spur me to actually put together a little something.

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