Rise of evil had as goal to provide a lot of re-playability. One technique to achieve this was adding some choices for the player. In this article I want to look back on what we did and what techniques where the most effective.
First of all, you can unlock safe-houses. A safe-house allows you to respawn at that point and gives ammo and weapons. Both are important resources for the player. On the other hand, unlocking some safe-houses is dangerous. I really like this part, because it gives the player short-term missions and choices without much impact on the story. Secondly, the order of the main objectives is not fixed. At some point, you need to carry an orb from the graveyard to the Liandri factory. You can first clear the factory or try to carry the orb to the factory directly. If you clear the factory, it will take you extra time but make the carrying of the orb easier. I have the feeling that this choice really adds re-playability but gives players less direction what they should do. Third of all, an alternative route through the sewers is provided. I personally regret putting this in the map. It allowed the player to skip some very interesting parts of the map. I do not think this part really adds re-playability because most people are used to think that there is only one route. If they have found one, they will not go and look for another.
All in all, I think we did a pretty good job in giving players choices. Unfortunately it is not always clear to the player.