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An Evening at the Ransom Woodingdean Museum House

by Ryan Veeder profile

2016

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Number of Reviews: 3
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
An effective ghost story, with some issues, May 25, 2018
Overall, "An Evening at the Ransom Woodingdean Museum House" is a very effectively spooky ghost story, which deftly builds up suspense and manages a delicate atmosphere.

Uncharacteristically for Veeder, the map is a little bit hard to navigate, especially outdoors, and I thought that (Spoiler - click to show)getting back into the cupola from outside was seriously underclued; it wasn't even clear to me what I was supposed to be doing at that point, and I had to really run down the clues.

Worse, right at the climactic ending of the game, the author sees fit to suddenly insert a really direct explanation of the game's themes into the narration, totally killing both atmosphere and subtlety. It's like dropping a grand piano on us labeled "HERE'S THE SUBTEXT BY THE WAY, IN CASE YOU MISSED IT". This is especially puzzling since the game deploys and refers to a lot of traditional elements of Gothic literature, which sets us up to expect some more sophisticated handling of these well-worn themes, or at least not to expect them to be hollered explicitly at us. Oh well.

Also, for the "tricks that only work once" file, this games makes freakily effective use of (Spoiler - click to show)deceptively pretending to undo. This mechanical trick fits perfectly with the game's spooky atmosphere.

So, a good campfire story, although with some avoidable hitches. Worth a play.