This blog post will focus on the game rules of Simulation Mindy, and the opening narrative.
Apollo Drake is an ambitious quantum computer scientist from a post-human word, with a vision to create an experimental simulated human society. Join him as he pitches his idea to Big Science for funding and makes various ethical and practical decisions related to the construction of this experiment . . . assuming, of course, that humanity survives long enough to make this happen.
This game is a one-player experience. The player begins on the first page of the narrative and follows the prompts to move through the story. At the bottom of most pages are several options from which the player can choose the direction of the story. Effectively this game will teach the player to use it.
As the inside story grew progressively more intense and disturbing, it became necessary to compose a disclaimer to feature on the opening page of the story. Therefore this disclaimer will accompany the rulebook.
Previous feedback has helped me to finesse the mechanics. More recent feedback from playtesting has focused on the narrative behind the game.
Now that the bulk of the game is live, much of which features Mindy’s somewhat intense story, play-testers have been able to experience the story. This has been helpful in identifying gaps in the narrative I left, particularly continuity errors I caused – which is almost inevitable in writing so many different strains of a story.
Feedback which has particularly pushed me to update my game regards what’s acceptable to feature in the story and what is not. The story features murder, infanticide, suicide, violence, sexual promiscuity and a variety of other stimuli, yet the part of the story which gave Mindy the opportunity to inject her child with a fast-tracked HIV virus to kill him caused a little unrest from my play-testers. It seems I slightly crossed a line, however general consensus is that adjusting this murder to plain poison is a more acceptable plot device – interestingly enough.