Restless released in EctoComp

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Tagged: restless, unity, spirit ai, character engine, tea-powered games, ectocomp, interactive fiction, emily short, if

I don't post much about my day job, but we have something to show off this week.

You've been haunting old Mrs Fagles for decades. Now she's sold the house, and the new owner's moved in. Sylvie's broke, bad at plumbing, and anxious about everything. And with a living, breathing, fretting roommate, how are you supposed to rest in peace?

Drink blood. Set fires. Tell lies. Give advice, loan out a wedding dress, reclaim your true name. Remix your dialogue options to reflect your mood or dig deeper into the topics that interest you.

Restless is a short menu-based narrative game by Emily Short. Emily built it using Spirit AI's Character Engine tool. The visual design and Unity interface were provded by Tea-Powered Games. Restless is part of EctoComp, a Halloween-themed game jam.

I didn't design Restless, but I'm one of the people who supports Character Engine. I built a lot of the logic which handles menu-based games of this type.

It's pretty cool. (I do say myself.) You may think it's a familiar Twine-style choice game, but look again. You can select a mood and/or topic; the current menu options are biased to include options which express your selections. You can freely adjust the mood and topic controls at any time, and the menu will be "re-rolled" to match. It's a nifty way to explore a conversation space.

SpiritAI has a beta program for IF authors who want to experiment with this tool. If you're interested, check out our web site. (There's a "sign up" link up top.)