What tool would you recommend to lay out a complex branching story?


I have a small passion project going currently, a simplistic but story heavy character-driven RPG game, my brainstorming phase is going well, but I am hitting a bit of a wall concerning keeping everything organized. Turns out, folders full of .txt files are not easily readable after taking a week long break.

At this point, I think I need some tool to help me create a slightly less confusing but still highly complex design document.

What I want to use the tool for:

– Write down the general story, which splits into branches, sometimes coming back together, sometimes not

– Write up characters and their story, which changes depending on the circumstances. Will need to be linked back and forth to the general story and other characters story. These stories will branch out heavily, and I need a clear way to link branches to the conditions that enable them. Bonus points if the program can visualise the story-branch-tree somehow.

– Easily add tags to elements, e.g. to make it easy to find every char linked to a specific location, or of a specific type (e.g. farmer). Bonus points if the program supports using “tag-folders”, i.e. elements can be in multiple folders if they have multiple tags, so I can find the same file for the farmer both in the commoner folder and the village folder.

I’ve honestly never written more than short stories, so the scope of this is a bit of uncharted territory to me, I am honestly not even sure what a tool like that would be called. Could you recommend me some program that would fit my requirements?

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