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I THINK I'LL STOP OFF ON THE WAY

by piratescarfy profile

Surreal
2016

Web Site

(based on 5 ratings)
3 member reviews

About the Story

A surreal horror story about an English service station with randomly selected content if certain passages are revisited. Written while on holiday in the Lake District.

Game Details

Language: English (en)
First Publication Date: March 7, 2016
Current Version: Unknown
License: Freeware
Development System: Twine
Forgiveness Rating: Merciful
IFID: Unknown
TUID: qwmeunch6ms97tzv

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Member Reviews

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Number of Reviews: 3
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
Short, surreal Twine about a strange service station, December 27, 2016
by verityvirtue (London)
Related reviews: melancholic
[Time to completion: 5-10 minutes]

You have been driving on a nameless road, for more hours than you can remember, for more hours that you should be. It's time to take a break, so good thing there just happens to be a service station coming up. It's deserted. The bathrooms are all boarded up.

The setting and premise has rich pickings for a horror story: one might find anything in an unfamiliar, deserted town - monsters, abysses, pure evil... The wee hours of the morning and tired narrator mean disorientation even in the best of circumstances, mean isolation and loneliness.

This Twine contains an inventory and location-based system, using the PC's need to use the toilet as impetus for exploring the locations. The objects in the inventory make up parts of an implement. The choice format removes the need to fiddle with verbs like one might in a parser IF (e.g. USE X ON Y), but, at the same time, wrenches control of the environment from the reader. This adds to the somnambulant atmosphere, like a malignant muscle memory: your limbs following the orders of something other than your conscious mind.

The cadence of the writing is staccato; terse - in moderate amounts, it underlines the starkness and desolation of the setting.

The LEDs flash pink and green. The buzzing gets louder. The buzzing gets louder. The crying stops.

There is sometimes too much of it, presented in uninterrupted chunks. Pacing is not always the strongest point.

This game strikes some of the same notes as Kinsale Horror: in both, the PCis a traveller stranded in a strange town which just becomes stranger and stranger. This game has much more ambiguous ending - benign, almost, as if you were recounting this as an anecdote in a social gathering - while Kinsale Horror carries through with the threats the setting makes.

As has been mentioned, this game has many parallels with a typical creepypasta - an almost real-world setting, amnesia, mutable settings - though I THINK I'LL STOP OFF ON THE WAY does make use of its format, by giving and removing player agency to drive in the creepiness.

Nightmare-like short horror piece, December 28, 2016
by streever (America)
This work of surreal horror that read like a nightmare: while I appreciated the creepiness, I never felt any sense that the protagonist was in real danger. It felt more like I was playing through his recollection of a fever dream.

The writing was strong overall, but held back by excessive wordiness and presentation. Small yellow type on black is not easy to read, especially with such dense sentences. I'd recommend increasing the line height and narrowing the column the text appears in along with some light editing.

Some scenes were especially good; the restaurant was the most unsettling, followed by picking up the blade. I didn't expect the game to raise existential questions at the very end; I suspected something more violent.

I'm not sure what the deeper themes were here--they eluded me, in the same way that the meaning of a convoluted dream does, leaving me only with a sense of what was happening. In that way, I thought this was reminiscent of Murakami, with a focus on the style and sense of the situation.

A brief Twine game with a classic creepypasta vibe, July 6, 2016
This game adheres closer to creepypasta tropes than most Twine I've seen, and it does a faithful job of recreating the creepypasta vibe of stories like Asylum or No End House.

You are driving down the road when you have to pull off and go the bathroom. But the bathrooms are boarded up, and the rest stop is deserted.

The game is polished, with good CSS. It never becomes exceptional to me, but it's a fun, short play for fans of creepypasta. If you don't like creepypasta, however, you may be put off by the over-the-top horror, casual language and amnesia common to the genre.

If you enjoyed I THINK I'LL STOP OFF ON THE WAY...

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This is version 3 of this page, edited by verityvirtue on 26 November 2016 at 7:08pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item