Friday, April 17, 2015

Choose your own Shakespeare: To Be or Not to Be

Have you ever read 'Hamlet', or watched a production of it? It's very good, but kind of depressing. Ryan North, the artist behind Dinosaur Comics, thought so too. So he decided to fix 'Hamlet', by "restoring" it to its "original second-person non-linear branching narrative format". In other words, a chooseable-path adventure!

In 'To Be or Not to Be' you, the reader, can play as Hamlet Jr., Ophelia, or Hamlet Sr. (spoiler alert: he's a ghost!), guiding your chosen character through North's retelling of one of Shakespeare's greatest plays. Interspersed with amazing graphic art, a book within a book, and many, many stabbings, 'To Be or Not to Be' transforms the moody Hamlet into a carefree pirate, while the miserable ghost decides to stay on as king, and Ophelia invents central heating, because castles are draughty and cold, you know?

Just be warned - you may want to want to wait until you have a few weeks without assignments before you go down this particular rabbit hole.  There are many possible ends to this story, and trying to find the right paths to reach them all can become an irresistible challenge.


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