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How Choose Your Own Adventure Books Brought Choice To Video Games

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Computer RPGs like Disco Elysium owe a lot to old school text adventures like Zork, classic tabletop roleplaying games such as Dungeons & Dragons, and a non-linear genre of literature called «Gamebooks,» the classic example of which is the Choose Your Own Adventure series.

These analog forms of interactive fiction introduced and refined many of the concepts core to modern video game storytelling – branching narrative routes based on player choice, multiple endings, and so on.

Early works of interactive fiction like the Choose Your Own Adventure novellas or Steven Jackson's Fighting Fantasy gamebooks also acted as a testing ground of sorts for text adventures and similar video games, teaching game writers how to give players story choices that were meaningful and satisfying.

When computer RPGs like the Elder Scrolls games and MMOs like Ultima Online become successful franchises, there were gamers in the gaming community who speculated titles like these would drive classic tabletop roleplaying games like Dungeons & Dragons out of business.

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