Unit 322 (Disambiguation)

The story here is presented as a series or collection of Wikipedia articles, inter-connected via hyperlinks. It looks as if no-one's remarked on the actual inter-connectedness of the topics or events, but everything comes together to form a coherent and cohesive story about scientific research into mind control originating in Nazi Germany. Along the way, we might run into these blocks of code; once we've found enough of them, a new link opens up on one of the articles and we proceed to the denouement.

I haven't tried to actually decode the code blocks yet. It doesn't appear necessary to do so in order to understand the story, which suggests that the "codes" might be meaningless ... but if they're not, I wonder if they might reveal another twist on the story.

The conceit of "browsing" through interconnected articles is what puts the "interactive" in this fiction. It adds to the immersion in a way that no simple narrative can. As a player, there's nothing to change; and, in a sense, there's no real puzzle hurdle other than the need to see certain specific articles before being allowed to see the conclusion. But I would argue that the act of hunting down information actively engages the reader and makes them part of the story. Each article adds to our curiosity, and we go back and forth drawing connections in our quest to satisfy that curiosity.

This, I think, is what differentiates this story from one where we're simply choosing what order to see the middle bits in. In both cases, we still see everything there is to see before going to the conclusion, but in this case it feels like our choice matters. Not to the sequence of events, no, but to our curiosity: it's about which itch needs scratching first.

It's not so complex in game design terms as a full English breakfast, but it's similar in the sense that, while everything is still going to wind up mixed together in our stomachs in the end, we're still sitting there choosing one item over another according our whims of the moment. Sausage then toast then beans then mushrooms then back to toast? Sure. Whatever order you like.