If you, like me, were a big scifi/fantasy reader at a young age, you probably remember the "Choose Your Own Adventure
" series. It was a series of books in which, every chapter or so, you could make a choice that affected the story, and you were then prompted to turn to a certain page to continue the story after that choice. Edward Packard was the original author of that series, and he's now teamed up with an iPhone app company
to create U-Ventures
, a throwback iPhone application that works as an interactive, e-book style Choose You Own Adventure. The first book is called "Return to the Cave of Time" (after the first book in the original series), and just like the old series, it offers up a set of second-person branching paths.
Unfortunately, at US$3.99, the app is pretty expensive. Reviews say that there are only about 15 minutes of content to go through here, and while the old books were short, there are a lot of other interactive storytelling options on the App Store in the form of games and other e-books. But as a retro return to the old form, it's a nice taste of what's possible. I'm hoping that Packard will update the idea a little bit and make it a little more iPhone-friendly next time.
Or, ... you could just roll your own. Our own Victor Agreda wrote about iPod-friendly CYOA books
a long time ago. Download some of those onto your iPod, and you could be right back in those old pre-video game days of interactive storytelling.