Halloween Ghost Story Contest -- 2011
Interactive Fiction Winners

Helpful Abbreviations

look to see what's currently around you.
inventory to list what you're currently carrying.
n, s, e, w, ne, nw, se, sw
north, south, east, west, northeast, northwest, southeast, southwest (respectively) to move in the given direction.
x whatever
examine whatever to examine whatever object.
again to repeat your last command.

Back in 2002 we expanded this contest to include interactive fiction entries. In addition to writing skills interactive fiction composition requires some programming skills, so there tends not to be too many active interactive fiction authors, and we don't get too many entries in this category (we didn't get any prior to 2009). This year we got exactly one.

If you're not familiar with interactive fiction (or IF for short) you're in for a treat. There are numerous guides around the Internet to help you get started, but in general these are stories in which you play the role of one of the characters and you do not just read -- you participate. The flow of the story is in part under your control. There are a few common abbreviations to save yourself some typing, but in general you can type in almost any command to describe what you'd like to do.


Our sole entry is by Emma Joyce, a recent college graduate living in Boston, Massachusetts. Not counting little test pieces that she used to get familiar with the medium, this is the first interactive fiction title she's written.

Circumstances leave you on the doorstep of a decrepit looking house to report for the only job around that doesn't require references. Can you unravel the mystery of the house and your mysterious new employer? Available as a download and can be played directly online.

Play Online

Downloaded stories may be played with any of a number of freely available IF players. Popular choices include Zoom and Frotz, but it's also quite easy to just get a starter's pack for whatever kind of machine you're using from the IF Archive.

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