IFComp 2007: Gathered In Darkness   1 comment

Review after the jump.

Skinn, whose theories that demonic powers and genetics could somehow be interrelated has caused a large amount of embarrassment for his previous employer Northgate Labs and his colleagues.

We’ve had IF as B-movie; now we get B-movie as IF with demons and zombies and hellhounds and most importantly extravagant scenes of gore. In a way the tension is undercut by playing out too much gore too early, but there’s a good dose of dark humor (meaning I suspect suspense was never the intent) so I wasn’t bothered.

Granted: the author has a predilection for funny spelling errors. (My personal favorite is “warewolfs”: get a pack of six at the discount wolf warehouse.) That didn’t bother me either.

What did bother me was the use of BRIEF room descriptions. To be specific, the game gives a full description of a room the first time, but subsequent descriptions are cut to a bare minimum. There is no VERBOSE mode to turn this off. This is not necessarily bad behavior — it can cut to the chase and keep the player from endlessly wandering back and fiddling with scenery — but this is a game where the player needs to fiddle with scenery, and several important objects mentioned once in a room description are never described again. So if one takes the game’s advice when stuck and goes back over every room carefully for hidden objects, one is completely and impossibly stuck: there’s no mention of the object that really needs to be searched in the brief room description. Hence: an hour of aimless wandering.

So, a plea to the author: allow at least the LOOK command to display the original room description, even if there’s no method in Quest to handle VERBOSE mode? Pretty please?

Other than that I’m looking forward to the full version of this.

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Posted November 12, 2007 by Jason Dyer in Interactive Fiction

One response to “IFComp 2007: Gathered In Darkness

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  1. Addendum: I have found out from Michael Martin’s reviews that SEARCH ROOM will give the full initial description.

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