After a lot more time than we expected it to take, we are finally releasing our very first app into the Android Market tonight, a joint project we're calling Choose Your Path. Both of us have fond memories of the Choose Your Own Adventure series of books from when we were kids, and we decided a while back that it would be great to have something like that in mobile format, especially on something with a touchscreen. (For those of you who don't know, Choose Your Own Adventure books were stories written in the second-person where you were given sets of choices throughout the story that took you to alternate endings on different pages.) Since we didn't want to rip off the existing books, we decided to write our own and try to crowd-source some more.
There have been a lot of challenges along the way, most notably (for me) trying to write a decent story that wasn't too short while I'm busy with school. We've had some interesting experiences experimenting with scaling on devices with different screen sizes and resolutions, seeing how some manufacturers' skins affect the look and feel of the app, and learning how to take advantage of SD card storage. We think that we've ironed the bugs out sufficiently to release at this point without anybody encountering any major snags, but if you have questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact us here, or email us via the feedback link in the app.
I've had a lot of fun writing my first story for the app, and we're sure some of you might like to try your hand at it too. I used some tools to help me plot out the story which were tremendously helpful, especially Thinking Space (for your Android phone) and Freemind (for your computer). These two mindmapping programs allow users to chart out their intended story line in a collapsible flowchart-style way, and can read and write the same files (mindmap, or .mm format).
At the moment we are writing stories by creating plain text files following a specific code template, which we will demonstrate in the next blog post with some examples. Interested readers may wish to start charting out their story ideas using the tools I suggested above (no affiliation). Then once you learn how to make the files, you can put your own stories on your SD card and view them through the app just like any other story. If you need help with coding the pages correctly, please contact us and we will guide you through the process. If you think you have written a story other people would enjoy too, you may submit it to us (submissions at sudomakemeanapp dot com) for inclusion in the next app update.
We are tremendously excited to be filling a niche, and hope you will join us and participate! Thanks for taking the time to check out our app and our blog; we hope you'll check back often. :)