Quests of Epic Proportions
The Quests of Epic Proportions are "choose your own adventure" (CYOA) games that have been built with young people's social-emotional learning (SEL) in mind.
Set in a quirky fantasy world, players take on the role of adventurers who pool their supplies as a team. In each chapter, teams encounter scenarios and must reach consensus about how to use their supplies in order to take advantage of opportunities and avoid disasters. As the challenges mount and supplies grow scarce, successful teams will include all members' voices, discuss alternatives, and weigh their options as they decide the best course of action.
The fictional challenges are engaging and present "real enough" situations that deep SEL conversations can arise around interpersonal skills such as active listening, perspective-taking, disagreeing agreeably, and tolerating frustration.
Play through a sample chapter: Mausoleum of the Murmuring Mummies, Chapter 3
Teachers and families who are looking to incorporate social-emotional learning (SEL) goals in their work with young people can receive printable game materials and online access to the serialized CYOA stories. Contact Jason for more information!
I wrote the CYOA stories and then built the interactive elements using Twine, an open-source tool for writing interactive fiction. I coordinated with an artist to create custom game cards to represent supplies and treasures.
The funny thing is that [my students] have not even caught on to this being SEL. They are stating sentences like, "Our group is using active listening, and it works." [and] "I feel like our group overpowers people's opinions. How can we change that?"
Menu of Quests
Mausoleum of the Murmuring Mummies
Bandits have been looting local burial crypts, and our heroes are recruited on behalf of a wealthy benefactor who is worried that her own family's memorial may be next. The job is to collect the family's heirlooms before the bandits get their hands on them.
There's just the tiniest complication: the mausoleum was built near a magical vortex that seems to be reanimating the dead!
Will our heroes collect the treasures and survive the many dangers lurking deep within the Mausoleum of the Murmuring Mummies?
Curious Cavern of the Coglings
After a mudslide uncovers an ancient archway in the swamp, a statue in the local museum begins telepathically pleading with visitors: "Return me to my home." Our heroes are hired to explore what lies beyond the archway and return the homesick museum artifacts.
The artifacts were created by the coglings, a technologically advanced society known for clockwork inventions, powered by gears, springs... and mysterious magic.
Will our heroes restore the artifacts and avoid the tricks and traps that await them in the Curious Cavern of the Coglings?