Project link:

Rationale & Challenges

When I set out to complete this project, I knew that I wanted to use this Twine platform to showcase how pervasive internet content has become. With access to information at our fingertips, internet content has exploded in, I believe, an unintentional way. Rather than putting our best foot forward and populating the internet with words that convey meaning and meaningful ideas, we have clickbait. Don't get me wrong, I love a Buzzfeed list. Cat videos: yes. I'm not a humorless monster. But where is the line? What are the intellectual costs for our beloved cat videos? Amongst this is another concern, which I will only mention: fake news. Based on this idea, I decided to create a text-based game where you guess if a poem is computer- or human-generated. As "literature folk" we may not have trouble completing this game with ample health. However, if your friends played it, would they be able to distinguish between the two types?

Like a past Twine story I created, I thought my idea would morph fluidly into the digital space. I was wrong then, and was wrong with this project, as well. In both stories, I wanted the ability to push one link to two separate pages. Each time you clicked the one link, it would take you to one page or the other. The order would not matter to the game; I was looking for a variance of reader experience without allowing the reader to choose which link to follow. Though there may be a way to do this that I am not finding anywhere, I became too frustrated to continue pursuing it.

Another challenge I ran into occurred when I was setting my health variable. It took a while to get the correct syntax on the correct pages, but I believe the variable is working well now. This could be a playful and interesting variable. Realizing that I could use these to keep score or inventory made me want to make a much more complicated text-based game.

The more I work with Twine, the more I see the potential it has for complex narratives. I can't imagine what my future students would make of this platform, but I know there will be creative, thoughtful projects because the platform almost demands it. Twine also allows students to experience an arduous editing process through the lenses of the "Debug View". I spent most of my time in this view fixing variables, pathways, and content. Here we can analogize pathways to transitions and content to be literal when thinking about revision of writing. While some tools may be tricky to implement, the base functions allow for a lot of authorial creativity and implementation of complex ideas.