4) Archives & Meta-resources


This bibliography was published in the November 2002 issue of TEXT Technology.

Note: For a more current list of similar resources, see the IF Wiki FAQ.

25 Aug 2001; Dennis G. Jerz
This part of the Annotated IF Bibliography covers archives, compilations, weblogs, and portals.

Firth, Roger, ed. "PARSIFAL: Interactive Fiction Links." 2000-01. 30 May 2001. http://homepages.tesco.net/~roger.firth/parsifal/. [link]
**1/2 An attempt to "pack as many items as possible into a small space." Useful for locating the homepages of IF authors or reviewers, or virtually any other online source having to do with IF (present or past). No commentary or evaluation, because, as Firth wrote in a post to rec.arts.int-fiction (12 Feb 2000): "I'm assuming that you know who or what you're looking for, and just need reminding of its current URL."

Firth, Roger. "Ifaq (IF Frequently Asked Questions)." Maintained by Stephen Griffiths. 2001. 30 May 2001. http://www.textfire.com/raiffaq/ifaq. [link]
**** An incredibly efficient introduction to IF, presenting brief answers to dozens of questions regarding the history of IF, how to play it, and how to write it. Links point the reader to more detailed answers.

Freebern, Ryan N., ed. "ifFinder: Interactive Fiction Search Engine." 2000. 30 May 2001. http://www.corknut.org/ifFinder/. [link]
**** A portal-style site, with IF content divided up into categories such as game theory, news, and programming languages.

Granade, Stephen, ed. Interactive Fiction [About.com]. 1997-2001. 30 May 2001. http://interactfiction.about.com/games/interactfiction/blnews.htm. [link]
***** A tremendous guide to current events in the IF community, updated almost daily. He also regularly writes short, informal articles on such topics as using IF to teach ESL, women and computer games, IF and traditional genres, and "literate" IF . (See also §3: Granade.)

Granade, Stephen, organizer. Interactive Fiction Competition 2001. 2000. 30 May 2001. http://www.textfire.com/ifcomp/ [link]
**** The IF competition was created by Kevin Wilson, and has recently been organized by Stephen Granade. The number of entries has been going steadily up, with 37 in 1999, and 53 in 2000. One good historical overview of the competition is available at http://www.igs.net/~tril/if/competition/.

Kinder, David and Granade, Stephen, eds. Interactive Fiction Archive. 1992-2001. http://ifarchive.org/ [link]
** A comprehensive -- but at times overwhelming -- archive of downloadable games,hints, maps, programming tools, and articles that are (or are at least presumed to be) in the public domain. Created by Volker Blasius and formerly maintained by Blasius and David M. Baggett.

Mullen, Eileen, ed. XYZZYnews. 1995-2001. 31 May 2001. http://www.xyzzynews.com. [link]
****1/2 Fanzine named for a spell in the original "Colossal Cave Adventure." Edited by Eileen Mullen. Features IF articles organized by category. Includes interviews with noted IF authors, as well as essays on character gender, previews and reviews of IF offerings, humor, and other community-building tidbits. Hosts an annual virtual awards ceremony.

Musante, Mark, ed. "IF Review: The Online Interactive Fiction Review Site." 2001. 30 May 2001. http://www.ministryofpeace.com/if-review. [link]
****1/2 A growing collection of thoughtful and literate reviews of IF.

O'Brian, Paul, Wilson, G. Kevin and Olson, Magnus, eds. Society for the Promotion of Adventure Games (SPAG). 1994-2001. 31 May 2001. http://www.sparkynet.com/spag. [link]
***1/2 In 1997, this publication changed its name from the "Society for the Preservation of Adventure Games." This gamer-friendly site focuses almost exclusively on reader-submitted, spoiler-free capsule reviews. Not as many in-depth, stand-alone essays as XYZZYNews.

Parker, Marnie "Doe," curator. Interactive Fiction Art Show. 1999-2001. 30 May 2001. http://members.aol.com/iffyart/gallery.htm [link]
**** Created by an IF author and critic who has dyslexia, the "Iffy Art" contest attempts to separate interactive textuality from the "narrative" elements favored by the literati, and the "game" elements favored by the programmers. "What is left? Art. Experience for experience's sake. Interactivity for interactivity's sake. Non-goal (basically) directed interactivity" .

raif group members. rec.arts.int-fiction (raif) USENET news group. [link]
**** Online discussion group for IF programmers and designers. Before posting there, check the raif FAQ http://www.davidglasser.net/raiffaq or search an archive such as http://groups.google.com. The archives are a good source for quotes from authors explaining their own work, describing their design choices, or discussing highly technical issues.

rgif group members. rec.games.int-fiction (rgif) USENET newsgroup. [link]
** Discussion group for IF players. Before posting there, check the rgif FAQ http://bang.dhs.org/faq or search an archive such as http://groups.google.com. Researchers will find plenty of thoughtful comments from critics and gamers who liked or disliked a particular element of the story or implementation, as well as frequent desperate postings of the "I'm stuck, how do I get past the snake" variety.

Silcox, Mark, ed. Interactive Fiction [Suite101.com]. 1999-2001. 31 May 2001. http://suite101.com/welcome.cfm/interactive_fiction. [link]
**1/2 This site duplicates the function of Granade's better-maintained version on About.com, but Silcox does offer several worthwhile original articles about IF from the perspective of the gamer/player. (See §3: Silcox.)

van Egmond, Stephen, ed. "Interactive Fiction Research Library." Undated. 04 Jun 2001. http://bang.dhs.org/if/library/. [link]
**** "This library brings together some of the current body of thought on IF: history, criticism, design, and so on. Many issues have been debated on our Usenet newsgroup, and those discussions are reproduced and summarized here." Includes pages devoted to the history of IF; design and aesthetics; reviews and criticism; and IF programming issues.

Dennis G. Jerz
03 Sep 2001 -- last modified
Dec 2006 -- minor HTML edits