I have a confession. I’m not just an audio person. I sometimes spend time with those filthy video editors, and I’ve been known to dabble in web based projects. I’ve even been spotted using a prototyping tool that doesn’t have audio. Shocking, I know. I’m talking about Twine in this case, and it is fantastic.
Twine does support audio, and video, and images, and pretty much anything you can throw at a browser, but most people know it as a text tool, used to make interactive fiction (fancy name for text adventure games) and clever websites. There are a ton of things you can do with Twine with minimal coding knowledge, which is a nice break from my usual work in Unity or Unreal. Twine is also constrained, which drives me to make interesting choices. If I want to emulate this function from another project, that we built in Unity project that tied to a web database, how can I fake that in Twine for this quick prototype? Do I even need to? What is the core of the interaction? What do you actually need to track? It makes you reevaluate every part of a larger concept, stripping out what might not be necessary, and it lets you try things quickly. Prototyping in text reveals details you might not notice, or reveals connections that can make or break your game, and are a lot easier to fix when it’s a few lines of text. Twine lets you build a core game loop or a bold story as simple text choices. Not as fun as a nice model of a plasma rifle with some killer particle effects, but that can come later, and takes a hell of a lot longer to mock up.
All the cool kids are using it, including Crows Crows Crows and uh… well, they’re cool enough. All right, fine, I threw something together for when I was out of the office. It’s here, I apologize in advance. This was a couple hours of work over Labor Day weekend in advance of a couple weeks out of the office. I hadn’t used Twine in years, 2 is a big improvement over earlier versions, but I think it turned out okay as a test project… mostly. Might’ve gone too hard on the inside jokes… HR thought so at least.