The world of literature has always evolved, changed, innovated and experimented. And so I have been hoping over the last few years that with apps popping up all over the place, we’d be treated to some new, exciting and experimental literature. Telling stories in new ways, using words in new ways.
But so far, I’ve only seen it done well in these two apps:
1. Regency Love, Tea for Three Studios
In this app, you play the part of a Jane Austen character, and through text interactions with multiple choice responses, play your way through a story that you affect; generally meaning you end up married to a different bachelor. You also take part in quiz questions to gain contemporary attributes such as dancing, art, charm, etc. It’s beautifully illustrated, a great soundtrack and the first couple of times I played it I was totally immersed. It’s well written, too!
It’s made by a group of three people who have developed it completely on their own, making updates rare and comparatively expensive, but it’s well worth it. I’d love some more things like this, it’s exceptional!
2. Fallen London, Failbetter Games
I’m quite new to this, so don’t think I can fully explain, but it’s pretty spectacular. It’s basically a whole world of interactions with multiple choice; so like the above, but it feels absolutely massive. There’s so so much to explore and find – it feels like a massive series of novels that you just explore in different directions. I’m still pretty lost and confused by the whole thing, but it’s pretty impressive.
The idea of it is a sort of Victorian-esque London which has fallen underground somehow, and is inhabited by all sorts of strange creature, schisms and plots. The writing is wry and certainly for people who like words. There’s interaction between players too and so far people seem to really get into the spirit of writing like the game, so that’s pretty fun too.
I think Failbetter do some other things like this too, but Fallen London is the first with an app. I’d recommend giving it a try!
So these are both really good, but I’m disappointed there’s not more out there. Surely there is more that we can do here? Do you know any great literary apps?