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IFComp 2015 release
For all systems. To play, you'll need a glulx interpreter - visit Brass Lantern for download links.

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Pilgrimage

by Víctor Ojuel

2015

(based on 10 ratings)
2 member reviews

About the Story

Leave Rome in the dead of night. Pursue an hermetic quest throughout Medieval Europe. Find arcane knowledge or utter despair. Blessings of Babylon.

Game Details

First Publication Date: October 1, 2015
Current Version: Unknown
Development System: Inform 7
IFID: Unknown
TUID: kh9r3ogcfkt49ibh

Awards

43rd Place - 21st Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2015)

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Member Reviews

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4 star:
(1)
3 star:
(5)
2 star:
(3)
1 star:
(1)
Average Rating:
Number of Reviews: 2
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
Evocative glimpses of cities worldwide, but less enticing up close , October 24, 2015
by verityvirtue (London)
You are on a pilgrimage. Where to? It is uncertain.

I had mixed feelings about this game. On a micro scale, there is enough to make it infuriating, things which shouldn’t be there. On a macro scale, though, Pilgrimage is about the search for home and making things right again.

What I liked about this game was that the scale of travel in this game suggests sea voyages every time you go in a compass direction, painting the game’s geography in broad sweeps instead of tiny intricate detail. This was fitting, as the PC travels across the world, so giving a general, though evocative, impression of different countries worked better than focusing on tiny details.

Pilgrimage is structured in small scenes, typically set in a particular country. By solving a puzzle or doing the ‘right’ action, you get to the next scene, and so on and so forth. The challenge, then, is figuring out what the action is; this was not always intuitive.

When travelling, the people you meet for such a short time sometimes seem themselves to be temporary while you are the only permanent thing you know; so it is with Pilgrimage. The NPCs in this game are little more than tools to solve a puzzle- was this a good thing or bad thing? I’m not sure. (Spoiler - click to show)This got mighty weird with the gallant knight, though - he's clearly besotted with you, and for you he's just an automated sword? In the context of a prolonged pilgrimage, it made sense that the PC never formed any long-term relations with anyone.

In the end, I relied on the walkthrough to bring me through the game, and I have to say that not worrying about getting lost or putting the game in an unwinnable state let me focus more on the writing - location descriptions is definitely one of the author’s strengths.

There were small niggles which would have infuriated me if I had not had the walkthrough: it has several implementation slips characteristic to parser IF. There is some confusion between definite and indefinite nouns when taking inventory and when you manipulate objects (Spoiler - click to show)(“In boat is sailor.”), which made the prose read weirdly. The synonyms the game accepted (for objects) could be more extensive. Messages when I take objects are triggered whenever I take it again (Spoiler - click to show)(such as the longsword, instead of only when I take it the first time - which produces quite amusing messages without context. For a normal release, this would not have left a good impression. As an IFComp entry, even less so - but Pilgrimage is redeemed by its broad arc and quite lovely writing.

An alchemical IFComp game with innovative movement system, February 3, 2016
by MathBrush
Related reviews: IF Comp 2015
Pilgrimage is a deeply symbolic game. The author has based the game around several symbolic progressions, including a progression of colors, the stages of grief, and more.

It is set in a pastiche of the medieval world, and it includes almost the entire world. Typing E will not take you one room east, it sets you off on a journey of months or years, to Russia or China.

You travel around trying to gain alchemical knowledge, and acheive a kind of transcendence. You seem to worship a dark Babylonian God, because Blessings of Babylon of disputable benefit are given to several people.

The IFComp release was a bit buggy, but I hope the author will do a postcomp release fixing the bugs discovered in the comp. This would result in a great game that people could discuss for a long time to come.

If you enjoyed Pilgrimage...

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