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The Interrogation

by Sharang Biswas and Rebecca Drapkin

2016

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About the Story

From imaginary games jam. Based on the review:

The Prosecution

Based on the name alone, I was kind of hoping for a game where you play an ace prosecutor — why do defense attorneys always get the cool stories? — but in this case you’re the one being prosecuted. The police haul you in for questioning about a robbery, there’s a text entry prompt, and well, go for it!

This is one of the best attempts I’ve seen at handling really free-form textual input. The trick, of course, is that it’s carefully constrained — if you get too far off topic the interrogator will pull you back on course, and for the most part you’re just answering their questions. But it accepts a lot more than just “yes” and “no” answers; experimentation is definitely rewarded!

The courtroom format (assuming the case gets to court) makes for an interesting twist on the notion of choice. The main outcome is whether you’re convicted or not; but do you “win” by escaping conviction? Or by figuring out what actually happened? Or by casting the blame on someone else — or by *protecting* someone else?

The actual story is pretty good too. There’s a *lot* of stuff going on, and it’ll take you a while to unpick it all, but nothing stretched the limits of my credibility too far (except for possibly the arrangement with the puppies — you’ll know it if you find it). One thing I especially like is that all the characters have a well-written inner life, and they’re all working away to forward their own agenda, both during the robbery and even during the trial itself.

Despite the complexity, the difficulty curve isn’t too great. Some secrets are very hard to uncover, but most of the obvious endings can be achieved without too much trouble. I only hit one ending that seems to require knowledge from multiple playthroughs (I can’t figure out how Oscar can determine where both Sarah *and* Raul were at the crucial moment… but I could be missing something.)

If I have one complaint, it’s that the PC might just be a little *too* three-dimensional! It’s nice to have a PC who’s not a cardboard cutout, but you only need one or two quirks to make an interesting character; Oscar has enough quirks to, I don’t know, keep an entire army of psychiatrists in work. The case would work just fine if he were dialed back a bit.

Game Details

First Publication Date: February 23, 2016
Current Version: Unknown
License: Freeware
IFID: Unknown
TUID: i7k6ttmuyxapgnn0

Awards

Entrant - imaginary games jam

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This is version 1 of this page, edited by Jason Dyer on 7 March 2017 at 5:55pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item