Storium

Have you been waiting for a game that catered to writers? I actually can’t say that I really was, but apparently someone on Kickstarter thought of it. The game is called Storium, and it is an online storytelling games that lets players formulate a story with their friends through gameplay.

While there are many games built around storytelling, especially in an improvised manner, Storium actually focuses on writing stories by gamifying the writing process. There is a narrator who chooses a setting and then throws out scenarios that the players have to work around. Players do this by playing certain cards that will get them out of the situation. The writing part comes in when players write down how they are using the card. For instance, the narrator might say a character has fallen onto the train tracks and a train is about to hit him. The player would then use his agility card to escape the oncoming train, but he or she would also have to describe the scene and how the character leaps from the tracks to safety.

Storium also has a great many worlds that writers/players can choose from as a setting for their story. Some are fairly generic, but many fiction writers have gotten on board with the game and created settings for it that people can write it. Among those writers are award winners and best-sellers like Scott Sigler, Nancy Holder, and Elizabeth Bear. There are also several game designers or roleplaying game writers like Adam Koebel and Filamena Young who have contributed settings as well. All-in-all there is a diverse set of landscapes for players to choose from when they move to create a new story, and I think it will be interesting to see what other writers provide content for the game in the future.

But if none of the offered settings appeal to you, or if you just love designing worlds and don’t want to be trapped in one that someone else made, you will always have the option of creating your own setting. Players can even make these settings public so that other players in Storium can write in them as well. So if you’ve ever wanted to be a setting designer for a game or something like that, this might be a good place to start.

I’m pretty excited about this game, and I’m curious to see how it develops. As it stands I see it as a very good writing exercise for a group of friends who write, or a great diversion for friends who enjoy writing but don’t take the hobby that seriously. There could be potential for even more than that going forward. Will we eventually see novels or series published that began as games on Storium? Who knows, but I think it’s a cool possibility, and so I’m going to try and get in on the fun early.

Storium has just a little over a week left on its Kickstarter campaign. The game is already funded, but if you want to get in on the beta or buy a membership to the game, you still have the opportunity. If you’re interested, check out the project’s page and throw down some cash to show your support.

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