Based in Minneapolis, Minnesota
Choosatron Kit / PC / Mac / Chrome OS
The Choosatron is a Choose Your Own Adventure® inspired story printer, Wi-Fi connected and fully hackable! It easily assembles into a small interactive fiction game box, great for social reading and playing. Your decisions affect the outcome of the story, which is printed on a keepsake paper scroll. You'll be able to write your own stories as well, using open and free software. Download new stories over Wi-Fi and share yours with others over the internet. Inspiring for kids, exciting for adults!
In the spring of 2012, Jerry Belich was given an Arduino micro-controller after expressing interest in getting into hardware, as opposed to the purely software world he had always lived in. After a month of it sitting in a drawer, two separate concepts that had been swimming around his mind collided, the art of choice based interactive fiction, and arcade-style social and physical play. After another month, the first Choosatron prototype was working, and a few friends quickly became authors in a fresh interpretation of a nostalgic medium. Another prototype was built for bringing to events which led to an offer to teach kids creative writing using the Choosatron device. It wasn't until early 2013 when Jerry went to London for five weeks did he discover just how strong the public response would be, as he brought one to tinker on. He decided to get serious about development and began preparing for a kickstarter to raise funds. It ran over the month of August, 2013 with wild success, bringing in $75k out of a requested $22k. Since then, Jerry has been building the team, speaking at events, recruiting authors, and most importantly of all, getting Choosatrons in front of kids to help inspire them technically and creatively.
- Make: Put the Choosatron together yourself! No soldering so great for kids and young adults.
- Read: Play stories of all genres, from scary to hilarious. Explore Pompeii before its great disaister, or live the life of a honeybee!
- Write: Dive into the fun and design your own interactive stories. The Choosatron encourages creative writing and game design without large technical hurdles that stifle motivation.
- Learn: Education and fun don't have to be separated. The engagement of the Choosatron is perfect for helping with literacy, language learning, science, math, and even creative problem solving.
Choosatron Trailer: Make, Write, Read, Learn YouTube
Choosatron Kickstarter Video YouTube
Logo & Icon
Awards & Recognition
- "Children's Media Conference | Playground Exhibition, Official Selection" Sheffield, UK, 5 July - 10 July, 2016
- "TIFF.net | digiPlaySpace, Official Selection" Toronto, Canada, 5 March - 24 April, 2016
- "Smithsonian Indie Arcade: Coast to Coast, Official Selection" Washington, DC, 19 January, 2016
- "WordPlay, Official Selection" Toronto, Canada, 7 November, 2015
- "Future of Storytelling, Official Selection" New York, NY, 7 October, 2015
- "Bit Bash, Official Selection" Chicago, IL, 22 August, 2015
- "GLOBALE: Global Games, Exhibit" Berlin, Germany, 11 August, 2015 - 17 April, 2016
- "Solid Conference 2015, Fellows Project" San Francisco, CA, 23 June, 2015
- "IndieCade 2014, Official Selection" Los Angeles, CA, 10 October, 2014
- "IndieXchange, Official Selection" Los Angeles, CA, 9 October, 2014
- "IndieCade @ E3 2014, Official Selection" Los Angeles, CA, 10 June, 2014
- "ZKM_Gameplay, Exhibit" Berlin, Germany, 9 September, 2014 - 4 June, 2015
- "Bit Bash, Official Selection" Chicago, IL, 6 September, 2014
- "A-MAZE 2014, Audience Choice Award Winner - WTF! Award Nominee" Berlin, Germany, 11 April, 2014
- "Game Science Center 2014, Permanent Exhibit" Berlin, Germany, 4 April, 2014 - Ongoing
- "Alt.Ctrl.GDC, Official Selection" San Francisco, CA, 19 March 2014
- "AWP, Exhibited" Seattle, WA, 26 February 2014
- "Game Connection, Selected Project - Nominee in Console & PC Hardcore Category" Paris, France, 3 December, 2013
- "Fantastic Arcade 2013, Official Selection" Austin, TX, 19 September, 2013
- "It is, you see, an utterly amazing thing. A thing of beauty and a properly wild idea."
- Konstantinos Dimopoulos, Indie Games
- "Beyond brilliant."
- John Polson, Indie Games
- "All hail the descendant of the choose-your-own-adventure book."
- David Cornish, Wired UK
- "The Choosatron is like someone captured the imagination of the world’s most prolific Choose Your Own Adventure novelist in a cheery palm-sized box."
- John Brownlee, Fast Company
- "I love knowing stuff like this can exist in the world thanks to the internet connecting creators + backers."
- Alexis Ohanian, Without Their Permission
- "Projects like these are championing the right to a 'mental breath of fresh air', where concepts of childhood openness and curiosity combine with the application of play and self-expression."
- Josephine Hatch, The 405
- "It's like Zork without the 8" floppy discs and all the typing.
Exposing kids to a mix of tech and art–exactly what they need in their sugar-enriched diets."
- Josh Mings, Solidsmack
- "The simple experience that the Choosatron promises is completely fascinating to me."
- Jeff Penner, Wasabi Mountain
- "It's tactile, it's never-ending, it's amazing, it's stories made by you—in a box."
- David Allen Ibsen, Get The Five
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Check out our successful Kickstarter campaign at kickstarter.com.
Jerry Belich is an alternative game designer, using hardware, electronics, and software to create immersive interactive and storytelling experiences. He went independent in 2013 after a decade of professional software development, now consulting for other indies and companies in game design, narrative writing, and installation work. His first hardware project, the award winning Choosatron, has traveled all over the world, featured at dozens of events, and sparked imaginations all along the way! He plans on continuing creating his own inventions and games, and hopes to help many others to do the same through his talks, workshops, and being open about his own work.
More information on Jerrytron, our logo & relevant media are available here.
The Choosatron Credits
Business & Development, MwaM