As a kid there were a few series of books that I read frequently. I read everything I could find of The Hardy Boys, I read the Encyclopedia Brown series (RIP Donald J. Sobol) and of course the Choose Your Own Adventure books. The Choose Your Own Adventure Books (hereafter CYOA) were great because you could literally dictate how the story progresses. Often in books we read and think "oh come on, that's a dumb decision, clearly you go THAT way." In the CYOA books, you had that chance to become the decision maker.
The CYOA books were a huge part of childhood for a lot of kids, I imagine, not just me. I haven't read any for awhile now and while I'm now 37 years old I still occasionally think of tracking down a few of them just to relive the experience and see if it holds up. As many know, what we liked as a kid doesn't always translate to the same enjoyment as an adult.
So I was pleasantly surprised when I stumbled across this Kickstarter by indie company "Visual Baker" which has licensed five of the old CYOA books from the author and series creator Edward Packer, and are going to create fully animated and interactive GameBooks based on each CYOA book, starting with the book "The Underground Kingdom"
Underground Kingdom is an interactive gamebook for iPad and iPhone, adapted from the classic Choose Your Own Adventure®* book from Edward Packard. We will bring the experience to a new level, as it will include interactive features, amazing illustrations, animations and sounds.
When this project started, our idea was to use the original stories, so we got in touch with Edward Packard, the creator of the concept for the series and author of the first Choose Your Own Adventure book®* and over fifty other books in the series.
He offered to make some of his favorite books available to us and help us turn them into apps. We’re starting with Underground Kingdom.
After we finish this app, our idea is to adapt more books from the original series. We will continue with Hyperspace, Invaders from Within, Survival at Sea and Dinosaur Island.
When you think about it, Kickstarter is kind of an appropriate medium to fund this project. In the CYOA books, you - the reader - make the decisions and are responsible for how the story unfolds. You are the catalyst for how things end up, whether it ends in success or failure. Everything is on your shoulders.
And Kickstarter is much the same. These projects going out via Kickstarter would not be successful without people like you and I. We see the Kickstarter projects and we decide whether or not to fund it. We decide which road we want to take: Do we take the road to funding or to the road of non funding?
Much like the classic books by Edward Packer and others, we choose the path that these projects take. If enough people come together to support this GameBook by Visual Baker, then it will get funded, and that means more books will be made.
Visual Baker has licensed the rights for five books to be made into iPad/iPhone apps, and I think this is a fantastic project and is one that I personally am supporting. You can pledge as little as $5 (and get a copy of the iPhone or iPad app when it's ready in November) or pledge more and get other bonuses in the process.
Visual Baker's GameBook is the SearchingForChetBaker.Com Kickstarter Project of the Month. You can click through below to go to the Kickstarter site for the project and learn more about it, and make your pledge if you desire.
I encourage everyone to help support this great indie project!