“I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream” is a post-apocalyptic science fiction short story by American writer Harlan Ellison. It was first published in the March 1967 issue of IF: Worlds of Science Fiction.
The adventure game I Have No Mouth And I Must Scream (Cyberdreams, 1995), the first game to be marketed as addressing complex moral issues introduced the “spiritual barometer”. Based on the player’s actions, the multiple avatars in the game were evaluated from a moral standpoint by placing them on a scale of the barometer. Since then, many games have used a single sliding scale of good and evil. The position of the player on such scales may determine non-playable characters’ attitude toward the avatar(s) or trigger other events in the game world. Often, a certain branch of narrative opens based on a moral or other choice.
ZA The Good, The Bad, and The Player: The Challenges to Moral Engagement in Single-Player Avatar-Based Video Games Jaroslav Švelch