‘opinions on choices + point systems

question for everyone:
if you are writing a story, do you guys have a point system and do choices matter ?

if you don’t write, do you like stories better if they have a point system, do you prefer point system stories or do you are you just not a fan of choices at all ? lmk please !!

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Yep, I use the point system in my story and almost every choice matters :slight_smile:
I like to see the point system in other stories as well.

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:wave: I’ve been writing novel-style for about 10-13-ish years, so that’s definitely my most comfortable medium. I’m actually a little clumsy at translating my skills into the visual system of Episode stories (partly because I can’t do digital art for :poop: and I don’t like giving credits so I therefore rarely ask for help).

All that to say, if I didn’t want to write an interactive story, I’d write it in MS Word. So I write stories with point systems where choices matter. :stuck_out_tongue:

As for reading, I’m actually kinda on the fence, I like the chance to think through the choices, but I sometimes feel bad if I make the wrong one. :joy: Then the author gets all preachy on me—

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I have a couple of stories that use the point system and some that only use gains. The points system was really hard for me to get a hang of at first though.

As a reader, I’m not a fan of points in stories. I mean, it depends how it’s done but I feel like too often I lose points too early in the story and it ruins my reading experience.

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thanks everyone @amberose @Scarlet_Sapphire @shaharPie

originally i wasn’t going to add a point system but that’s something i decided recently i wanted to add- although the only part that threw me off is that i know a lot of readers don’t like choices that matter. i think i’m going to add a point system that effects relationships rather than the plot point with alternative endings, firstly because it’s wayyy to complicated for me to code and i’ll probably go through an existential crisis while doing so but i want to stay true to the plot i’ve created.

does that sound like a good idea, please let me know i’m stressing wayyy to much over this

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Yep. All my stories have choices that matter, use the point system and have multiple endings. I always include a bonus chapter where you can read all the endings if you want, though.

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I think points work best for relationships, as long as you don’t make it too hard for people to know which one gets them more points

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i would love to do something like that but i feel like multiple endings is way to complicated to code, i feel like i could do it but a lot of stress will come underway. thank you for the advice, maybe if i improve my coding whilst writing my story i’ll multiple endings into the mix

Imo, you do what you feel. If you want to tell a story that goes only one way (like a novel or movie), if that’s how you think you’ll get your thoughts out and make the best impact, go for it. If you want to give readers things to explore and shape to what they want, then go ahead with that too.

Whatever you think will give the most quality content that will be the most fun for you to write. :relaxed:

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If you’re just using points, then it’s actually fairly simple.
My first “choices that matter” story, I had no idea how to use points but I could use gains. However, I wanted multiple gains to matter and I didn’t really know what I was doing so it ended up looking like this…
if (gain_item1) {
if (gain_item2) {
if (gain item3) {
goto ending 1
} else {
goto ending 2
}

It was a giant mess lol but amazingly it seemed to work ok.

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Imo the hardest part of branching is having the plot come together after the branch, so branching in the middle of the story can be tough, but branching at the end is easier. Even if it involves having two entirely separate branches for the final episode, it’s only double the work of a single chapter, relatively small challenge if you’ve already got a 20+ episode story haha.

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@Scarlet_Sapphire + @EliseC
i agree, i’ve made minor choices mattered but i haven’t done something that’s major that affects a fair part of the plot and i guess that’s what i’m worried about

i appreciate all they help everyone is giving me thank you for helping me out ! (:

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As Elise said, the coding to separate the branches at the end is relatively straightforward, and if you need it, you can always ask for help on the forums. :+1:

(Lmao my future story has 2 separate point systems along with about 3 different major gains that separate out into 11 endings because I’m a masochist, but it’s still possible to code the branches for that.)

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when you said 11 endings my brain just YeEted iTs SElF oUt oF the RoOm, i have so much respect for that fact your able to do that without having an identity crisis AHAHHA

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Yeah, for sure when you make choices that matter, you want them to come into play very close to the end, either the final chapter or the second last, you can’t let yourself branch out too early. If you’ve got two separate branches and it’s only ep4 of a 20-ep story, you’re in for trouble. :joy:

And lmao 11 endings is a little severe, that story has just been my brain-child for a while lmao. :joy:

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please hit me up with whatever story this is i need to read it like- right now.

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It’s coming out in like 2025 because I code slowly lmao, don’t hold ya breath. :joy:

But yeah, the trick is to have the choices that matter build up until the end, ie. with relationship points, the LI acts basically the same toward the MC whether the points are high or low, and the plot is pretty much the same, but everything starts to come together right near the end. :+1:

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i’ll be waiting patiently sipping a glass of wine til it comes out

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As a reader I take points if they’re there but they’re not a requirement for me to like and enjoy a story. I enjoy Dripping Mascara and I Married a Millionaire (2 stories that are more narrative based and don’t, as far as I can tell, use points) as much as I enjoy Austentacious and Why Don’t You Want Me which do. I think as a reader what’s more important is that I’m enjoying what I’m reading.

As a writer I don’t really have a points system in Perfectly Aligned, though I do experiment with them a bit. PA is a bit of my experimental story. I’m quite new to serious coding and while I’ve learned a lot, PA is where I kind of throw it to test it out. I am planning on implementing points for my K&T entry, though. I’ve already (I think) gotten the points figured out to use limb overlays with full cc and I’m hoping to implement an actual points system that will possible determine bonus scenes. I’m not really a “multiple endings” kind of writer, but I do enjoy giving readers the chance to have extra scenes. As a writer would I say a points system is important? I think it depends heavily on the story. For Perfectly Aligned it really wouldn’t work/make sense because I don’t have multiple love interests and I already have a rough idea of how I want the story to end. For my K&T entry, though, I do want to try and get more comfortable with using them.

As far as choices mattering: in PA they really don’t, but I’m hoping to implement more choice based things into my new story, though I don’t imagine I’ll ever feel completely comfortable with multiple storylines and endings.

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