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Osprey reworks 80s games books for digital

Osprey is to publish a series of digital-only enhanced e-books that enable readers to determine the plot twists.

The Infinite If series is being co-published with Fabled Lands, which owns the intellectual property to the books. Its six titles are based on games books published in the 1980s, which required readers to roll a dice to determine different outcomes to stories.

Osprey and Fabled Lands have converted the titles into the ePub3 format and added more gaming enhancements with the help of gaming technology company Spirit Media. The books, to be published in early May, will cost £3.99 and will be available on both tablets and smartphones.

Tim Gummer, business development manager at Fabled Lands, said: “We are not trying to do games. We are telling the story in a broadly linear fashion but users can decide which way to take the story. It’s like a tree, it goes vertically upwards but there are branches sticking out along the way.”

Joe McCullough, Infinite If project manager at Osprey, said: “The most exciting aspect of this project is that the books actually ‘remember’ what choices you make during the story. Spend some money earlier in the story to arm yourself with a sword and later in the story you will be better placed to vanquish your foes. Similarly if you fall and hurt yourself, you may not survive when things get really dangerous later on.” He added that Fabled Lands had a “huge” amount of experience in the game and book markets and had continued to adapt in the industries. Infinite If is one of many digital projects Osprey was working on, McCullough added.

The titles are: Heart of Ice, Down Among the Dead Men, Necklace of Skulls and Once Upon a Time in Arabia by David Morris and Way of the Tiger: Avenger and Way of the Tiger: Assassin by Jamie Thompson and Mark Smith.