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Glowgrass

by Nate Cull

Science Fiction
1997

(based on 68 ratings)
5 member reviews

Game Details

Language: English (en)
Current Version: Release 1
License: Freeware
Development System: TADS 2
Baf's Guide ID: 247
IFID: TADS2-0009C6BD11F41112184F6ABF6D179F4E
TUID: b1xy3s75cjlty973

Awards

Nominee, Best Game; Nominee, Best Story - 1997 XYZZY Awards

3rd Place - 3rd Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (1997)

Editorial Reviews

Baf's Guide


A xenohistorical expedition to recover artifacts of "the Ancients" takes on a surprisingly human and personal tone in this far-future sci-fi story. Simple Planetfall-like puzzles, thoughtful prose that establishes moods with parsimony. Short but not rushed. Well worth playing.

-- Carl Muckenhoupt

IF-Review
A Brief Flash
The story packs a huge punch for such a small game, covering as it does themes of hope for humanity and for the individual. (Jonathan Rosebaugh)
See the full review

SPAG

Post-apocalyptic IF? There hasn't been any, in my memory -- A Mind Forever Voyaging is the only thing that comes close -- but there's no reason why there couldn't be, and Nate Cull's Glowgrass, small but well-conceived, is certainly an interesting attempt. Though the game itself has some flaws, the story is intriguing enough to make it enjoyable. (Duncan Stevens)
See the full review

>VERBOSE -- Paul O'Brian's Interactive Fiction Page

Glowgrass is a well-written game with a pleasantly creepy aura, a pleasurable way to spend a couple of hours and hopefully a prelude to more quality work.
See the full review

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Member Reviews

5 star:
(12)
4 star:
(31)
3 star:
(22)
2 star:
(3)
1 star:
(0)
Average Rating:
Number of Reviews: 5
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Most Helpful Member Reviews


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
Clunky mechanics but engaging game, June 6, 2013
by Andromache (Hawaii)
This was an easy game with an engaging premise, exploring an Ancient ruin. Indeed, there are no real puzzles in the game except maybe at the very beginning to get into the compound. There's a touch of horror to the story, but I wouldn't consider it disgusting. More...unnatural. Not enough to be severely unsettling, though.

There are some parsing hiccups along the way, but I found they were mostly surrounding one particular game item, (Spoiler - click to show)the cable. However, the parser does helpfully provide the correct verb if you try to take the object but can't manipulate it. (Spoiler - click to show)"Attach" and "connect," plus related antonyms, should have been implemented, but the problem can also be solved by referring to specific sockets you want to put the cable in. The real trouble with the gameplay is more about having to perform actions one by one. Like, you can't just head in the direction of a door. You have to perform each step individually, which is rather annoying after getting used to more modern games.

Jerkiness aside, the game was still easy enough to get through with no hints and my only major complaint is really that the story is kind of unresolved. I'm a bit confused about the ending. The author says material had to be cut out to make the game fit the parameters of the competition, and perhaps the story resolution was that material, but I'd be interested in seeing an epilogue.

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful:
Nice setting, August 25, 2009
The best thing about Glowgrass is the setting. It's an interesting premise, though sparsely implemented, that does a pretty good job of drawing you in.

The environment is pretty small, and the puzzles for the most part are quite simple - though as another reviewer mentioned, there are some flaws in the implementation. For example, if you throw x at y, you are told that you can't reach y with just your hands! (Spoiler - click to show)The really irritating part is that you ARE supposed to throw x at y... but if you specify the target, you're screwed.

The conversational mechanic is also a little unintuitive - if you're having trouble, just realize there's an ABOUT keyword, and it's crucial.

If you don't get caught on the rough edges in the mechanics, Glowgrass will probably only take you 15 or 30 minutes to finish, if that. It's worth playing.

Cute, short sci-fi game with great NPC and setting, July 1, 2015
This game was very enjoyable, chiefly because it took a very different direction than I thought it would. It is a short sci-fi puzzle with some moderately difficult puzzles. It took less than 45 minutes to complete.

As others describe in their reviews, I had some guess-the-verb trouble and got stuck on one puzzle because I was too impatient.

This game has an NPC that I found much more emotionally interesting than just about any other NPC in a game. I found that the Club Floyd transcript had a few helpful comments from the game's author that clarified the ending. Wonderful game.

See All 5 Member Reviews

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Recommended Lists

Glowgrass appears in the following Recommended Lists:

All-time favorites by Felix Pleșoianu
No common thread here... Turns out, I like all kinds of games. Even some puzzlefests.

Memorable Settings by Emily Boegheim
Games with memorable settings or landscapes - not necessarily deeply implemented, but vividly described or intriguing in concept.

Beginner's choice. by Grey
If for first time or beginner players.

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Polls

The following polls include votes for Glowgrass:

Best sci-fi games by Ant-Fan
I'm looking for games from the sci-fi genre. I would prefer classic-style games, even if they're not classics (such as 'Across The Stars') because one of my all-time favorites is Planetfall, but really, anything goes.

NPC-less Exploration by Dannii
Supposedly one of IFs strengths is for exploring places with few other people, often abandoned places, but I can't think of many works which have zero NPCs and consist of a lot of exploration. Usually there's at least one NPC, or the...

Good sci-fi games by IFDent
I'm looking for a good science fiction game (sci-fi game) for example, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Infocom. Can't get enough sci-fi text adventures.

See all polls with votes for this game

Links




This is version 4 of this page, edited by Edward Lacey on 10 February 2013 at 10:13am. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item