In the autumn of 2017 I wrote On 'inside out' inventing and in it Mu was presented as an example of how core ideas can be largely self explanatory and yet work out extremely complex. Mu has two of them, the way the Wall emerges and the 'explosion mechanism'. While going over the process in my mind, in particular the first vision I had of how the Wall would emerge, I had a fleeting thought: "what if a much simpler mechanism were used to the same effect?"
Alas, the thought didn't fleet fast enough to escape. Mu is an extraordinary game to say the least and the promise of a great game based on the same 'interactive' board was too tempting to ignore. And there wasn't really a big problem either: the basic interaction of pieces could largely remain the same, but for a less massive outcome growth would have to be more limited and single moves might replace Mu's multi move turns.
The mechanism of growth featured in Mu's explosion mechanism has some a priori logic but it is too fast for the positional kind of play I envisioned. Lacking the mechanism one could argue that top layer cells might be removed or replaced by cells of the Wall simply by vacating them, but this might spur a chaotic growing frenzy rather than strategic considerations. Then came the thought "only couples can breed". While there's some truth in that where life is concerned, translating it to "only doubles can breed" for Storisende doesn't exactly preserve that particular logic. But despite this lack of a priori logic I saw it work. Whatever point of view I took, it seemed to behave exactly as the game I had envisioned.
A rather unique aspect of the game is that it merges organic behaviour and a territorial goal, with chess-like interaction of pieces. I hope you enjoy it.

Enschede, January 2018
christian freeling

Storisende is now featured in Stephen Tavener's AiAi and a rather unique characteristic of the game has since then revealed itself. Although the formal goal is territorial, the fight on the Wall is purely existential. Thus a game with uniform material and unified behaviour merges elimination and territory, the two most prominent goals in the realm of abstract strategy games. That was a nice surprise and it catapults Storisende right into the realm of games that matter.
I've written an essay titled Organicity in Abstract Strategy Games that was first published in Nick Bentley Games. In it the emergence of Storisende is covered in more detail.

Enschede, June 2018
christian freeling