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Re: Re: Absurd Chain


Exquisite corpse, in its original form, is a method by which a collection of words is collectively assembled in sequence, with only being able to see what the previous person contributed.

In this game, a group of friends try to compose a whole story assembled from a sequence of text messages, those that have a 160-character limit. Here is how it works:

  1. Someone creates a new story by pressing the plus icon at the bottom-right corner. The system automatically generates a two-word title for the story.
  2. By using Matrix, IRC, actual text messages, email, voice, or whatever you use to speak to friends, the first person shares the story title with whoever wants to play.
  3. Every participant joins to the story by pressing the icon that pretends to be a pencil at the bottom-left corner. They will need to write their names and the story title, insensitively of case.
  4. Once everyone has joined in, whoever created the story starts the game by writing the first part, in 160 characters or less. There are a couple of special highlight markers: *asterisk* and _underscore_.
  5. The system will ping one by one all the other participants, in random order, to write the next part of the story, also in 160 characters or less. They will only see whatever the last participant wrote. There are three rounds per story.
  6. When everybody has written all their parts of the story, the application will show the full story, and who wrote what.

Since you have to wait for others to write their text message, it usually takes a while to complete a whole story, but you can have multiple stories in play at the same time. It is a bit like Words with Friends or the like.

Be warned: This is a game hastily written for a jam, therefore there are a lot of bugs and many, many little inconveniences, and it is a bit of a slow play. Sorry.

This is my entry to the Narrative-Driven Jam #13, with the theme “Text Message”. Since this is a game based on a technique invented in the early 20th century, i think it also qualifies for the “retro” optional theme.

For some reason, i expected the jam to take place between August and September, so it was a bit of surprise to find it this weekend, and almost over already. I decided to go with something a bit less involved, specially given that for me the 10-day jam became more of a 36-hours jam!

Please note that it has a mobile-like user interface to evoke more the feeling of writing text messages, but unfortunately it is not usable on an actual smart phone due to how it handles text input. Such a shame.

In my mind, this might be an interesting party game, with a group of people in the same room, playing at it while doing whatever cool people do in social gatherings. Unfortunately, i do not have friends, so i could only test it with myself.

Not as interesting as i thought, let me tell you.

Now, the question is: “Is this really a narrative-driven game?” Well, if you focus on the three narrative aspects when writing the parts—plot, characters, and lore—, then it is! Although i admit it is a bit at the limits of the genre, maybe.


More information
Jam, Narrative, Short, Multiplayer
Programing language
Made with
Code license
GNU General Public License v3.0 only

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