This is my first thread to post, so sorry if I post something that's already been posted and all that. >.>
I was wondering how you guys put decisions in, and how you decide where a decision is appropriate? For me it seems just to flow creatively like my writing generally does... it's not a predetermined point or anything. What is a "good" player choice? (Not from a moral point, from a game designer point?) Should it be interesting? Outcome predictable? Meaningful? Have high impact? Drama? All of the above?
I've recently started work on a VN-type game and been thinking - am I putting too many player choices in?
I've written 1500 words and I've got 14 menus - that's nearly 1 choice for every 100 words written.
Plus, with all the branching taking place...
It's probably because I've played so many RPGs like Planescape, Fallout, Jade Empire, Mass Effect, etc. They often have highly interactive dialog. But I noticed that VNs tend to have a lot less player choices - and when you make a decision as a player, it usually has some kind of (significant) consequence. Most of my choices so far are more "flavour" than substance, if you know what I mean? After the choice, the conversation returns to the point it has to go to, it's not a "long lasting" decision.
Here's an example of my "meaningless" choices, for those who are curious:
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l "Well, what did you think?" p "Think?" l "Of the test?" p "Uhhh..." menu: "It was fun to do.": jump intro_larissa1_fun "It was a bit weird.": jump intro_larissa1_weird "Don't care, just doing my job.": jump intro_larissa1_nothing "The questions were stupid." if char_logi > 1: jump intro_larissa1_stupid "The questions were a bit cold." if char_emoti > 1: jump intro_larissa1_cold label intro_larissa1_fun: p "I enjoyed doing it, it was fun!" l "Really? I hated the test." p "Huh? Why?" l "Oh, I don't know..." l "Maybe it's because I don't like Richard." jump intro_larissa2 label intro_larissa1_weird: p "I don't know, it was a bit weird." l "Yes, I know what you mean." l "But then Richard is a bit weird..." jump intro_larissa2 label intro_larissa1_nothing: p "To be honest, I don't have an opinion. Just doing my job." l "Wow, life grind you down that much, huh?" p "Heh." p "Been with the company too long, I guess." l "I get a feeling I know what you mean..." l "I've only been working here for a short time, but that damn Richard..." jump intro_larissa2 label intro_larissa1_stupid: p "Tests like these are usually inaccurate, especially when the questions are so stupid." l "..." l "I completely agree! So glad to hear someone else say that!" l "I cannot understand why that damn Richard insisted on these..." jump intro_larissa2 label intro_larissa1_cold: p "It was alright, but I felt like the test didn't take feeling and context into account. Not a good way to find out someone's personality." l "Wow, someone who agrees with me!" l "I mean, some of these tests can be alright... but this one in particular..." l "Justice or mercy? Why not both?" l "Who would you take on holiday? Oh, I don't know... my husb- my mother maybe?" p "Yeah, or some friends." l "Hah! Richard probably doesn't have any friends... that's why!" jump intro_larissa2