Playing with choices: framing and options

I’ve recently read some really interesting research by Peter Mawhorter et al. about ‘choice poetics’ (Mawhorter, Mateas, Wardrip-Fruin, & Jhala, 2014). The authors look at a choice structure in interactive stories as composed of three elements: framing, options and outcomes.

The framing is the content provided when a choice is presented. It can influence how a player/learner interprets the choice. Options are the “clickable” elements that lead to outcomes or consequences (presented when an option is chosen). Options can give rise to expectations about the outcomes, depending on how they are written.

Framing and options can interplay and possibly influence the way a player/learner chooses. This inspired me to write a small sample interactive story where I play with some of those notions and creative writing ideas.

The tour guide.

Click here to have a play!


Mawhorter, P., Mateas, M., Wardrip-Fruin, N., & Jhala, A. (2014). Towards a Theory of Choice Poetics. Foundations of Digital Games.