Reconcile with Your Moleman Father
Burrow into his rocky heart.
Today’s quest will challenge you to conquer the most deadly force on the planet: a father’s disappointment. Then we’ll give props to imaginary dads in Table Talk, and I’ll give you a progress report on text adventures. Tally ho!
You are an adult mole child. Your sharp claw hands dig a fresh tunnel through the dirt ground, slicing worms in half by the hundreds. Their tortured worm screams ring in your ears as you finally enter the Tunnel of Crud, a mole expressway. The tunnel has many off-shoots, one of which ends in a small, sparsely furnished cave. There's a seldom used stove, a stone slab bed, and a bookshelf of alternative history about Mole War II.
"Welcome home," your mole father says with a deep scoff. He doesn't look up from his book, Assassinating Molessolini. You ask how he knew you were coming. "I recognized the vibrations from your irregular digging technique. Afraid to get dirt under your claws? Is that frowned upon in the surface world?"
It took all of twenty seconds to regret your decision to come back to the tunnels, but your therapist believes you need to have an honest conversation with Groozler, your father, in order to make progress in your sessions. You run your tongue nervously around your big sharp teeth.
Click on (3) things you'd like to say to your moleman father.
You have 0 Mole Relationship Points. The more points you earn, the better this conversation will go.
When your quest is complete, it’s time to debrief. Join your fellow adventurers at the virtual D&D table we call the comments section. Andrew’s been in the bathroom for, like, a half hour, and it’s his turn, so we might as well chat.
Today’s topics of discussion:
🦡 So, how’s it going with you and your moleman father?
👔 Which fictional father would you want to be your real life dad?
🏆 What’s something you admire about your dad or a father-figure in your life?
Share your thoughts in the comments (or email a reply if you’re shy).
And sorry the button led to the wrong post last time. That bug should be fixed. Oh, and I know that’s a badger emoji up there, but I guess there is no moleman emoji? Weird oversight, Unicode Consortium!
THE TEXT ADVENTURE ADVENTURE BEGINS…
In December, we had a player survey. There was a lot of support among y’all to see Adventure Snack branch out into text adventures. Your feedback gave me the friendly push off the couch I needed to finally learn Ink, which is a scripting language designed for writing interactive fiction. Ink is great because (1) it’s free (2) easy to learn (3) makes writing interactive fiction kinda like screenwriting (4) plugs into other game engines like Unity, so later I can add fun stuff like graphics and buttons. Gamers love buttons, folks.
Update: I read (and skimmed most of) that whole-ass book! It’s very clearly written and I’m pretty sure I got all the big concepts. I like that the authors frequently say stuff like, “Okay, if you don’t want to learn any brain-hurting math-y jargon, you can stop reading at this point, because you know everything you need to know to make simple Ink games.” More books should give me permission to stop reading them. 👏
Next I’ll develop a short test adventure to play with the tools and see if I understood any of those words I read.
FIRST TIME HERE?
Adventure Snack is a game series I email to subscribers. Play Adventure Snack for free and turn your inbox into an adventure!
I’m a narrative designer for video games. I’ve written for Capcom, Ubisoft, Square Enix, and indie studios around the world. Follow me @geoffreygolden on Twitter.
Something I admire about my dad is that he’s very creative. Like me, he works in different mediums. He writes musicals and short plays, and puts on photography shows. When I was a kid, he used to design board games. They were really fun! He designed a grid-based strategy game that made a splash at a NYC game show, a fast-paced roll-and-move themed to horse racing, and a homemade marble shoot my sister and I just loved. I might not have gotten into game development if it wasn’t for him.
Never met my biological father, which is great for 5 minutes of open mic comedy but not so hot in other ways. Off the top of my head I'd choose Clell Hazard, James Caan's character in Gardens of Stone as my fictional father.