Nifty new hypertext/Interactive Fiction authoring system

I recently encountered a cool system called Undum for creating hypertext stories, semi-interactive text-based games, and Interactive Fiction.

On the plus side, it looks gorgeous, it does nifty smooth fades and highlights, and at the end of a reading/play session, the reader/player has a transcript that reads like a story.

On the minus side, it appears to require a certain amount of JavaScript coding (and some HTML and some CSS) if you want to write an Undum story, which may scare off less technical authors. It looks to me at first glance like it doesn't require much JS; it appears to be pretty beginner-friendly, to have pretty good documentation, and to supply a tutorial story that authors can copy and mess with.

One more minus: the bookmarking/save-game mechanism that comes built into it is kind of confusing and feels kind of clunky to me (as a reader/player).

(And one really tiny nitpicky minus: their default link text color is very hard for a color-blind person to see. I'm gonna ask them to change it.)

On the not-sure-if-it's-a-plus-or-a-minus side, after the reader clicks a link, the system tends to hide it or change it to be no longer a link. It's a neat effect, to see the choice you-as-reader have made fade away and disappear, leaving only seamless text, as if you hadn't contributed to the path the story is taking, as if there was only one path all along; and yet, from the reader point of view, it can also be pretty frustrating, to not be able to immediately go back (the way you can in most Choose Your Own Adventure stories and hyperfiction) and make a different choice. But I gather that the author can decide to leave the choices visible.

At any rate, I thought some of y'all writerly types and/or budding IF creators might find it interesting and/or fun to play with.

And if nothing else, it really is gorgeous to look at; even if you have no interest in writing something with the system, I recommend stopping by their site and reading/playing a bit of the tutorial game. Indented paragraphs! Drop caps! Smooth animation! Pretty!

One more note: if you decide to write some hyperfiction to submit to SH or other online magazine, please remember to password-protect it, so we won't consider it to have already been published.

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