The Choosatron: Interactive Fiction Arcade Machine

Reading Time: 1 minute

I have some vague memories as a kid of choose-your-own-adventure stories, but I didn’t really become familiar with them until my own kids were reading. I suspected they were a bit after my time, and a quick search of Google confirms that proper CYOA books didn’t appear until 1979, well after I’d exhausted the children’s section of the library.

I do however have great fond memories of the role playing games, and later interactive text adventure games on the computer. I can remember playing Adventure on the Heathkit H-89 and later Zork and other Infocom games. They were the ultimate in virtual choose-your-own-adventure games, though most of those had a single or limited number of endings.

The Choosatron: Interactive Fiction Arcade Machine is a bit of a hybrid of these worlds. Like the CYOA books, each section ends in a question with a few choices. Unlike the books, you don’t have to go thumbing through pages to find the rest of the story. As part of the Kickstarter, a number of authors are creating new and original stories, and everything is open so it would be possible to create your own stories and download them to the Choosatron.

Since the entire project is open source, it would be possible to create your own, but the entry level of $139 it would be difficult to do so for less and still have a decent looking enclosure.

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