What is a Gamebook

What is a Gamebook

By In Adventures In Interactive Storytelling On 18 May 2016


find out about gamebooks – try some out – decide what ours should be

Before the big launch of the project, we did introductory workshops in each school.

Crowdys Hill School had the privilege of being the first to find out exactly what the project is about. They started with the paperback version of the Doctor Who gamebook, Night of the Kraken, written by project supporter Jonathan Green.

In this story the reader gets to follow along with a Doctor Who adventure, choosing, at each crucial stage, what the Doctor does.

… the hatch in the metal wall behind the Doctor opens.

If you think that Doctor should turn and face what it ever is coming through the door, go to 97.
If you think you should get away from this place as fast as he can, go to 79.

The students had great fun with this, with some lively discussions debating between them what decision to take. Sadly, they weren’t able to stop Ravenwood destroying the colony of Kraa’Kn. Maybe we’ll have another go another time.

They also had a go at various games and gamebooks on the iPad. For example, The Forest Of Doom is one of the classic Fighting Fantasy games, in which YOU are the hero and make all the choices, fight all the monsters, and win all the treasure.

… some creature is coming down the path towards you!

If you wish to face oncoming beast, turned to 265.
If you would rather hide in the bushes off the path, turn to 318.

They really enjoyed playing this, especially decision-making and the combat. But they felt there was too much description – they really just wanted to just get on with the excitement.

Commonweal also tried out some of the classic Fighting Fantasy games on the iPad. They too enjoyed the action, but thought there was too much writing.

Lydiard Park Academy thought exactly the same as everyone else when they tried it.

So the first stage of the project was a success. All the participants liked the gamebooks, and all agreed which bits they preferred, and which bits they would like to change for their gamebook.

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