In August of 2013 I backed a Kickstarter project for a ‘choose your own adventure’ machine.
When I was a very young teen, I graduated from horror comics (we'll talk about that later) to choose your own adventure (CYOA) books. If you’re not sure what that is, it’s where you decide which way a story goes. Every so often through a story you, the reader, gets to decide which direction the story goes. Maybe you decide to look in that creepy chest in the corner, or chase that strange man down the street, or drink the potion you found on the table. Your decision determines what happens next (you chose option two: go to page 29).
It was with a wave of nostalgia and a pang of childhood that I was delighted to find that my oldest grand daughter Tandia loved CYOA books. I mean Jesus, I read them over a century ago and her’s this little girl getting excited with the very same nerdy behaviours her Grandmother did (never.tell.her.that).
Fast forward to the future and Kickstarter. Funding great ideas is so much fun and when I saw the video for The Choosatron, I was in before you could add a t-shirt to my reward.
When I backed this Kickstarter, I intended to build it with Tandia. Thank goodness the development of the kits took two years because I don’t think I have the patience with anyone younger than eight years old.
Today I helped Tandia with the build. She’s never used a screw driver before but took to it like an intern with something to prove. I read the instructions and only helped to check connections and screw-tightness. My big adult hands helped hold the sides together as we ended up having to tape the box with electrical tape after breaking the tension prongs - but all and all, Tandia read the instructions and built the Choosatron herself and we couldn’t have been happier.
Our next steps include loading the Choosatron with adventures - written by others and by Tandia.