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With Those We Love Alive

by Porpentine profile and Brenda Neotenomie


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Number of Ratings: 63
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- Ivanr, March 29, 2016

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
the best homage I can think of is that it inspired me to write, March 26, 2016
This is going up front in the hopes of helping someone else - I managed to utterly, utterly miss the point of the game's central mechanic, in which the reader is invited to actively participate by drawing symbols onto their skin, thus dissolving the distinction between player and character. It's implicit in the text, but I'm so used to the experience of a game being purely virtual that I entirely overlooked this, and therefore missed out on an intriguing manner of interactivity. Someday, when the memories have faded, I intend to come back and experience this properly. (Spoiler - click to show) ... And maybe I'll be lucky and met this fabled slime kid, too.

With that said, the game I experienced on screen was so rich an experience that it seemed complete to me. The worldbuilding is deeply, richly apparent, better so than many SF stories I've seen. One is is imbued with the fascination, trauma, and frustration the protagonist finds in - carefully limited - explorations that make up the story's heart.

(Now I'm having a go at Twine myself - my first finished game will have a "makes reference to" credit to this one - and I'm finding that one doesn't appreciate all the subtleties of coloured links and backgrounds until attempting to code. That's the kind of art that works by not drawing attention to itself, and Porpentine is a master at it.)

- Steven (Honolulu, Hawaii), February 5, 2016

- Hannah Powell-Smith, February 4, 2016

- nopetastic, February 2, 2016

- branewurms, December 20, 2015

- gaite, December 19, 2015

- Brendan Patrick Hennessy (Toronto, Ontario), December 7, 2015

- chugblood, November 3, 2015

- BRSanders (Denver, CO), October 3, 2015

- IFforL2 (East Asia), September 9, 2015

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
Liked it, made me feel and think things, July 3, 2015
by openmedi (Berlin, Germany)
I liked this one very much. There are bunch of reasons, but mostly because of the shared intimacy that comes with drawing on you own skin. I also became very aware how different genders manifest their reality and get manifested (if that makes sense) in very different ways. This leeds to very different ways of talking about our bodys "and using them" for world building. These are all pretty na´ve points, but than again I'm but a na´ve humanů I liked that it was more of an experience than a skill based game. (Spoiler - click to show)And it made me kind of emotional, although the end came a little abrupt.

- Danielle (The Wild West), July 2, 2015

- griftah, May 25, 2015

- chux, May 19, 2015

- Lanternpaw, May 18, 2015

- AngelKurisu, April 26, 2015

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful:
Wow, April 22, 2015
by Chris Longhurst (Oxford, UK)
First up, a confession: I'm really bad at high-concept stuff. To me, games are just games and as such I always feel like I'm missing something important with Porpentine's work - some point of contact that other people have and I don't.

But even then...

Even when I'm not getting the full experience -- playing, as it were, with a towel wrapped around my head...

With Those We Love Alive is a really, really good game.

The writing is brilliant. The world just the right level of underspecified to sink its claws into your imagination. Crammed with clever and interesting detail, but delivered with that sparse Porpentine style. And you can play through it in an hour.

I recommend this game to everyone. Even if you're not normally a fan of Porpentine's games, or find them inaccessible, or just too weird to play... give this one a shot.

- Doug Orleans (Somerville, MA, USA), April 9, 2015

- Matt W (San Diego, CA), March 12, 2015

- Thrax, March 11, 2015

- Chucklemaster, March 7, 2015

- Deka, February 17, 2015

- CMG (NYC), February 11, 2015

- bluevelvetwings, December 21, 2014

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