Updated Sep, 20th 2013
Last year, Zach Weiner, the creator of my favorite online comic, Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal, launched a Kickstarter campaign for a new project called Trial of the Clone. Recalling the venerable "choose your own adventure" novels of our youth, Zach proposed to bend his prodigious authorial skills towards creating a zany book of a similar vein, filled with sci-fi goodness and humor. What's more, Zach promised this book to feature a playable character, with the reader keeping track of a set of stats and items, allowing him to play a game while progressing through the story.
I got ridiculously excited and immediately became a backer. Apparently, many other fans had similar reactions, because the campaign absolutely shattered its fundraising goal of $15,000, eventually netting Zach over $130,000 in donations and locking him into an earlier promise to produce a sequel. For those who were not quick enough to jumpstart the campaign, the book is now available on Amazon and Breadpig for a mere $10.
I received my award of a paper copy of the book a short time later, as well as a link to an electronic version of the same. I love it! The writing is dark and silly, and a great distraction on the subway as I ride into work.
The only thing I don't like about it is that I have to bring a pencil with me, and constantly flip back to the beginning of the book, erasing some of my hit points after a fight with a pack of frenzied parents proud of their pill-popping child students, or adding my latest ray-gun acquisition to my arsenal. Plus, I have to keep track of where my stats stand at any critical juncture of the story, so I can reset back to this "save point" in the (quite likely) event that my character will die a horrible and agonizing death in chapter 46.
This brings me to what I would like to create for this class. Rather than have to use a pencil and paper to record my character's status, I want to create an app for my Android phone that will allow me or any other TOTC reader to:
With luck, I can create an app that will allow me to enjoy Mr. Weiner's work even more than I am now!
(The amazing cover image and book illustration shown above were created by talented illustrator Chris Jones)