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An interactive tale of robo-duels and the people who want them. (Very incomplete. Spoilers!)

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Mikkamon

This project is an interactive story.

The story

The all-new Mikkamon store is having its grand opening, selling battling holo-robots at the price of toys. Mick Kamon, a rambunctious kid who already models his life after collect-a-critter games and TV shows, is dangerously excited about this—​and the technology turns out to be dangerous as well.

Mick gets himself into an accident before the grand opening even begins. This accident gives Mick an in-character excuse to reevaluate his priorities, and the powerful technology of Mikkamon stands to give him the heavy-hitting adventures that he’s always dreamed of. It’s up to you as the player to take control of this moment of truth and make whatever impact you can.

But watch out! Mick may be obsessed and dangerous, but he isn’t the only one. Between his ever-supportive friends, the paranoid police, the capricious Mikkamon Company, and other quirky characters, the city is a lighted powder keg of goofballs.

The point

Since this is a project in development, turn back now if you don’t want to see spoilers or if you don’t want to know the author’s intent.

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I have several goals for Mikkamon:

  • Give the player actual agency over how the story turns out.

  • Make a long-form story. (Togeher with agency, this threatens to make the plot branch diabolically.)

  • Focus on characters and conversations, rather than focusing on item manipulation or setting exploration.

  • Establish a very thin fourth wall, so that the interactivity itself is acknowledged and exploited for drama in the story.

  • Lightheartedly explore philosophical themes revolving around:

    • What people do when only certain people have enormous power.

    • What people do when everyone has enormous power.

    • Ethics of fiction, from the point of view of fictional characters.

    • The importance and/or folly of making one’s dreams come true.

  • Actually write something. (I’m not usually a writer; I’m a programmer.)

I have fun imagining the possible ways a story can play out. But when it comes time to write a play-by-play of what happens, I usually get bogged down pretty quickly. I’m not always sure why, but now I have some hypotheses:

  • Perhaps I don’t have a good picture of the story pacing. I may know where I want the plot to go, but if I’m in the thick of play-by-play narration, I don’t know how fast I’m supposed to get there or whether I have time to indulge in fun scenes or side-plots.

  • Perhaps I get bored with how serious my story is. (I get bored with with other people’s serious stories all the time, so it’s only fair.)

  • Perhaps I don’t have a place I can quickly jot down ideas as I have them.

So this GitHub repository is an experiment: I’m giving myself an always-available notebook with a disciplined hierarchical outline. As I go along, I’m going to annotate the outline with specific gags so I don’t lose sight of the humor that keeps me motivated.

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An interactive tale of robo-duels and the people who want them. (Very incomplete. Spoilers!)

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