March 1 is the deadline to register if you intend to enter Spring Thing 2018; April 1 is the date to actually submit the games themselves, and they’ll become available for people to play on April 5.
March 3 is the next meetup of the SF Bay IF Meetup group.
March 4, Dublin Interactive Fiction Writing Meetup convenes for an introductory lunch.
March 5, there is a reading of procedural literature at the Harvard Book Store (Cambridge, MA) with Nick Montfort, John Cayley, Liza Daly, and Allison Parrish, at 7pm.
March 7, Oxford/London IF Meetup hears from Greg Buchanan on writing for games from IF and indie to AAA projects.
The Opening Up Digital Fiction competition runs through March 15, 2018. (Previously announced as February.) It offers cash prizes and the possibility of future publication.
March 17, Queer Code London holds a workshop on graphical uses of Twine (co-sponsored by the Oxford/London IF Meetup).
I will be at GDC March 19-23, speaking at the AI Summit and present at the Spirit AI expo floor booth.
March 20, Sunderland Creative Writing Festival offers a workshop on writing choose your own ending stories (looks like it’s focused on craft and choice design, and might be non-digital).
Through March 21, the MIT Rotch Library (77 Mass Ave, 2nd Floor) is running an exhibit about computer-generated books called Author Function.
March 26, the Dublin Interactive Fiction Meetup gets together to look at point and click adventure design and tooling.
And further in the future but worth planning ahead for: Feral Vector is May 31-June 2 this year. This is a joyous, playful indie conference in Yorkshire and has always been delightful when I’ve been able to attend. (I can’t make it this year, alas.)
Where the Water Tastes Like Wine drops today! This is an amazing project dreamed up and developed by Johnnemann Nordhagen — American lore, and America itself as a construction of stories we tell to each other — written by many many authors. I wrote for it. So did Olivia Wood and Leigh Alexander, Cat Manning and Bruno Dias and Kevin Snow, Jolie Menzel and Austin Walker and Matthew S. Burns and even other people yet. The art is beautiful. The music is haunting. Sting did some of the voice acting. (Yes, that Sting, what, did you think there are two Stings?)
Sub-Q has been going strong again, republishing the IF Comp entry Salt but also several brand new pieces: All Those Parties We Didn’t Cry At, Tripladin Massacre, and This is a Picture Book. (Some of these are now a couple of months old — I fell behind mentioning them here, apologies!)
American Angst (Misha Verollet) is now available on itch.io for free, as well as available on Steam. The description:
You wake up in pitch black darkness. You know not where you are. You know not who you are. And they’re trying to kill you…
Imagine a horror novel where you get to make the choices and decide how the story plays out: Welcome to American Angst, a text-based multiple-choice survival horror interactive fiction, combining RPG elements and turn-based combat with dark humor and satire.
A choice-based game slash novel, you try to escape from an underground prison complex – all the while suffering from amnesia, fighting off guards seeking your death, and slowly unravelling the mystery that brought you to this place, as you traverse the thin line between survival and revenge…
The French IF Comp has concluded, and the winner is Hansel et Gretel — La Revanche.
Articles and Other Writing
Liza Daly writes about the utopian fiction that inspired her IF Comp piece Harmonia. Part Two, even more extraordinary, covers one of the least-known authors in depth.
Sub-Q has posted a Q&A with last year’s top five IF Comp winners.
This Gamasutra article on dialogue systems by Pietro Polsinelli and Daniele Giardini is many months old, but I just encountered it recently.
Naomi Clark has a magnificent tweet thread on Black Panther.
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