Before I answer the questions I just want to mention that I took part in the first gem test. This test was a little different- a copy of my story was made and at the time, not every reader got access to the gem version. That test is now over and I chose to keep both versions of my story (so no one would lose progress). I could comfortably keep both versions because the gem choices in my gem version don’t exist at all in the non-gem version. (As in, the gem choices do NOT impact the storyline and are not needed for the best experience.) Apart from a few people asking if gems were needed for the best ending or asking me how to do the coding (lol), I didn’t get any complaints in fanmail (and I was expecting some).
Why do you think other authors chose to include gem choices?
Well at the moment, it’s only open to writers in payments. Going forward, I think the main drawcard will be money (either additional $$ if you’re in the payment program or an “easier” way to get into the payment program if you’re not).
For the test, I chose to participate for a different reason. At first I thought the idea was awful lol but then I thought about it and I thought that I’d be a good “candidate” for the test. In my stories, choices matter. I wanted to challenge myself to add choices that would add value to the story without directly impacting the ending (as in, it still needed to be 100% possible to get the best ending without spending a single gem). I’m fairly happy with how the story turned out, but going forward, there are definitely some things that I’d do differently
Would you include gem choices in some of your future stories?
As mentioned above, one of my current stories already includes gem choices. Going forward, it depends on the terms. If I need to include gem choices in every single episode then… maybe not. If I don’t? Then yes. Definitely.
As mentioned previously, choices in my stories matter. I often get people DMing me wishing they could redo an episode/choice, wishing that there were hints, wishing that they could redo mini games etc. Personally, I would utilise choices in this way . For example, if you forgot some important information that was given previously, you’d be able to “buy” that information with gems. If you made some bad choices, you’d be able to “buy” an alternative solution or something (it would obviously depend on the situation, but you get the idea). Gem choices wouldn’t be needed to get the best ending. They would just enable a reader to get bonus points/collect points or items that they previously missed out on.
What are the benefits of gem choices (in any story)
It depends on the story. I personally think a “good” gem choice should enhance a story or give some kind of benefit, without being crucial to a good storyline.
What are the down sides of gem choices (in any story)
It’s going to depend on the author. If you feel like you have to spend money to get a good storyline, then I think a lot of people will stop reading. If you do spend the gems and feel like you wasted your money, that will also impact your reading experience.
I believe the cost of gem choices is going to be fixed by Episode?