Unofficial guide to the Natural History Museum

Do you  remember Farting Statues from last year? I like to think of it as the  cult hit of 2014.  I like to think that its far ahead of its time and in many years to come it will be seen as a defining moment in the fart apps genre.  Probably won't though.

But writing it did get me thinking a lot about how people can be inspired by museums to write apps and learn to code.  But its not all about coding.  I started to write a computer game based around the Horninman museum.  But while writing it I got a bit distracted by the Guardian article about Twine

I'd heard of Twine a few weeks before but not really looked at it much,   and I still hadn't intended to as I wanted to concentrate on the Horniman game.  That changed when I visited the Natural History Museum one lunchtime.  Wanting to see Sophie the Stegosaurus that had recently been put on display I headed to the Dinosaurs Gallery, but no Sophie.

Discovering later that Sophie wasn't with the rest of the Dinosaurs but in the Earth Hall gave me a couple of ideas.  One is a game based around Dippy and Sophie and the other was a re-thinking of the traditional museum guide or map.  The Dippy & Sophie game will come later (Hopefully) but I got working straight away on the museum guide.

Using only the Natural History museum map  and website I've created a basic interactive guide basing it loosely on the early eighties text adventure games like  Sphinx Adventure  The guide gives you a description of your location and the options of where to go next.


Structure of the guide
Structure of the guide

The guide is up online  for you to try out.  I'm not going to make any claims for its accuracy, as I've not had chance to try it out in the museum yet to check, but will do.


Screen Shot 2015-02-08 at 12.20.21

I'll put the code up on github for anyone who wants to build versions or just have a look how it was built.  It barely scratches  what Twine can do using only links between the passages.  There is the possibility to add in Macros,variables and add more interactivity.

Would love to hear what you think of the guide and using Twine for developing interactive museum games.












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