A fan has created an in-browser choose your own adventure parody of Pokémon that’s contained entirely within a font.
Fontemon is a game which uses the popular open type font format to let players work their way through a simplified, choose your own adventure parody of Pokémon set in the world of Minnesota.
Creator Michael Mulet has explained how Fontemon works in a very in-depth post on Github. The gist of the post is that each press of a key on a keyboard in a program which uses a font causes the font to draw an image on screen.
These are known as a Glyphs, and are generally presented as letters, but some fonts such as Windings create images.
Michael explains that whereas most fonts have a few ways to draw these glyphs, Opentype has “at least 14 ways to draw glyphs” including “scalable vector graphics”, “embedded bitmaps (images)” and “PNG images.”
By using one of the options known as “Type2 Charstrings” Michael was able to draw pixel art in his font, and also embed game logic within it.
Every time a player types a letter, the game renders one frame image out of 4694 frames, which play in order like a flipbook.
The faster a player types, the faster these frames appear. At certain intervals, choices are given to the player which require them to press a certain key, letting them pick moves in battle and so on.
The game has various branches and endings available, depending on choices that the player makes, rewarding players for trying different choices.
Whilst Fontemon is one of the most ambitious fan Pokémon projects today, others recent fan creations have been gaining significant attention across the internet. Recently, a fan created a realistic render of the Pokémon legends: Arceus pokeballs.
Elsewhere a group of fans banded together to create a pixel art redraw of the Johto region map from the second generation of Pokémon games.