a web-based choose-your-own-adventure zombie apocalypse story
November 6, 2014 2:46 PM   Subscribe

"The Dead Outnumber The Living is a mix between a “choose your own adventure” book and a classic text-based video game, going beyond the typical choose-your-own-adventure theme by providing a vast amount of pathways, dynamic content, story clues, and a few puzzles to solve."

stats: 1105 passages - 2113 links - 114 ways to die - 12 ways to win

"The story starts off with the hero (you) holding out in your San Francisco apartment with your dog Lola, 2 weeks following a global zombie outbreak. Unlike traditional choose-your-own-adventure books, which tend to be rather short and limited, this zombie apocalypse experience contains over a thousand passages, with pathways splitting and converging at points, items you can collect and combine, dynamic ambient content, and even some light puzzles to solve.

When writing the story my goal was to infuse video game elements wherever possible. I don't want to spoil what happens in the story, but using some broad examples I can say that this means optional, ambient storytelling, pathways changing based on the items you currently have, and strategic decision making."
posted by flex (16 comments total) 33 users marked this as a favorite
Does something sad happen to Lola?

*reloads page, pets Lola again*
posted by turbid dahlia at 3:02 PM on November 6, 2014 [6 favorites]

Okay, I'm dead. Next try.
posted by Omnomnom at 3:09 PM on November 6, 2014 [1 favorite]

The game ends if you die? What's the point of a zombie story, then?
posted by Faint of Butt at 3:16 PM on November 6, 2014 [4 favorites]

Yay! I got saved! There is a lot of annoying randomness that forces a reload, though. Turning one way results in instadeath when the other doesn't, with no indication of what to do.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 3:22 PM on November 6, 2014

...I'm stuck in Alcatraz. Is there a way out?
posted by Omnomnom at 3:31 PM on November 6, 2014

The win I found depended on ignoring some of the advice on the map, and happened pretty quickly! (I mean, after I died 20 times.)
posted by Elementary Penguin at 3:34 PM on November 6, 2014

Also, I know it would ruin the game, but I really like seeing the source files for these involved Twine games. Here's hoping it gets released some day.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 3:44 PM on November 6, 2014

I was saved and only good things happened to Lola.

posted by One Hand Slowclapping at 3:47 PM on November 6, 2014 [1 favorite]

This is good fun, but I wish it had been more carefully proofread :\

Also, it'd be exciting if, upon death, the story continued with you as a zombie. Maybe the pages could then auto-advance, randomly choosing from a number of options at the bottom; zombie-you ambling aimlessly about, stumbling after the living on occasion. Ultimately you'd stagger into an open manhole or get shot by survivors or something, but until then you might actually do some really nasty stuff without being able to stop yourself, your free will having been subsumed by an insatiable desire for brains/living flesh/whatevs.

//pony request
posted by Pecinpah at 4:36 PM on November 6, 2014 [3 favorites]

Just got done playing. SUPER FUN! Though the image on the front page isn't loading for me for some reason.
posted by Woodstock at 4:59 PM on November 6, 2014

"Congratulations! You have successfully survived a zombie infested San Francisco. You are safe…for now…"
posted by DarlingBri at 6:05 PM on November 6, 2014

That was pretty darn cool.
posted by flowerofhighrank at 9:01 PM on November 6, 2014

I got off of Alcatraz by going to sleep, which advanced the plot.
posted by Elementary Penguin at 2:41 AM on November 7, 2014 [1 favorite]

This was interesting and I really enjoyed it. I survived without ever dying or having to go back, which really surprised me. I liked that there were points where your decision had to simply be a coin toss and you weren't given additional context or guidance; it made it more realistic.
posted by staccato signals of constant information at 6:25 AM on November 7, 2014

So far I've found four out of twelve wins: escape from Alcatraz by boat or helicopter, airlifted off a bridge, and (I think) rescued by a submarine. So far Lola has survived every time. Any other ones?
posted by Elementary Penguin at 6:34 AM on November 7, 2014

I noticed the path that I took that every time I made an egoistic decision I would die. Every time I went out of my Way to help others, I would get new opportunities.
posted by Omnomnom at 1:07 PM on November 8, 2014

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