The ManyEnding Story
Visit manyendingstory.nz to play.
The ManyEnding Story is a coming-of-age tale with a difference. The free online ‘click-a-path’ will be catnip to readers who grew up devouring secret path adventure stories - only this version has more sex, drugs, and rock-dwelling skinks.
When playing the gothic and whimsical online story, the reader becomes the main character: an Ōtepoti-based graphic designer and lizard enthusiast who’s just turned 31. They’re trying to ‘level up’ as an adult by collecting all five possible ‘adult points’: a career, a partner, a kid, a home, and creative fulfilment. But the point system is a bit subversive. It might get players thinking about what their own definition of a fulfilling life is.
There are 25 potential endings to discover in The ManyEnding Story, and as with the children’s versions of these tales, readers might find themselves falling into quicksand or getting eaten by a shark. Or they might end up designing computer games in Toronto, falling under the spell of a Dunedin surgeon, or teaming up with a sexy detective to bust an international smuggling ring.
Two collaborators elevated the text and transformed it into an immersive experience. Photographer Kristina Simons took dreamy photos of Dunedin locations, and University of Otago master’s student Jacob Cone brought everything together into the online platform.
In 2023 The ManyEnding Story was shortlisted for the Laura Solomon Prize, which celebrates new writing with a “unique and original vision”.
The story is free to play online at ManyEndingStory.nz.