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For all systems. To play, you'll need a Z-Machine Interpreter - visit Brass Lantern for download links.
Story File
German Translation by Maris Mueller.
For all systems. To play, you'll need a glulx interpreter - visit Brass Lantern for download links.

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Sunday Afternoon

by Christopher Huang (as Virgil Hilts)

Historical
2012

(based on 16 ratings)
4 member reviews

About the Story

It's gloriously sunny outside, and you can smell the grass from in here. It's not fair. All the servants have the day off, and you can bet they're not cooped up indoors in their Sunday best. If only there were some way to escape....

Game Details

Language: English (en)
First Publication Date: September 30, 2012
Current Version: 1 (18th October 2012)
Development System: Inform 7
Forgiveness Rating: Merciful
IFID: 9BA1CB63-83F8-4079-AA34-C3F8B55C943D
TUID: yv4mjm4han072fg

Awards

5th Place overall; 3rd Place, Miss Congeniality Award - 18th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2012)

Nominee, Best Individual PC; Nominee, Best Implementation - 2012 XYZZY Awards


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Member Reviews

5 star:
(2)
4 star:
(5)
3 star:
(7)
2 star:
(2)
1 star:
(0)
Average Rating:
Number of Reviews: 4
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Most Helpful Member Reviews


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
Great game, October 29, 2017
This game is a great game! Of course, one of the puzzles you stumble across by accident, but that's just part of the fun!

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
The game they tried to call "Dapperington Manse". (this is a lie), February 6, 2016
by Wade Clarke (Sydney, Australia)
Related reviews: IFComp 2012, Inform
(I originally published this review on 3 October 2012 as part of my blog of IFComp 2012. This was the 2nd of 26 games I reviewed and it has been revised at least once since my review.)

It's 1892 in England, and also in all the other countries of the world, I expect. You're a formally dressed little boy whose mummy and daddy are away at Oxford, and you're trapped in the house with boring Uncle Stephen and Aunt Emma this Sunday while summer goes begging to be had outside. Your goal in this game is to escape the cloying weight of the very proper world of these adults and to get out of the house. Some postmodern interruptions stop it from being entirely straightforward, but I concede I might have preferred a straight telling of this story. It's a clever and finely written game, nevertheless.

My favourite element of Sunday Afternoon is its demonstration of the intelligent persistence of the child protagonist. Initially you're not even allowed out of your chair in the parlour, but with excruciating tenacity you can ask your aunt about each item on the mantel in turn from a seemingly endless series until (Spoiler - click to show)any kind of a gap in her concentration can be found, allowing you to slip away. There's a vaguely Babel Fish puzzle-like quality about this initial obstacle which was just beginning to induce stress in me when it relented. You can also ask your aunt and uncle about an extensive range of topics suggested by props in the house or snippets of prior conversation, and you will find that they have a proper observation to make on almost every one. The pair could be potentially cartoonish in their starchiness except that it's easy to believe in the united front they put up in the face of a child of a very upper-class family. And then there's also the complication of ENTERING SPOILINGTON HEIGHTS (Spoiler - click to show)the story being revealed as a role-playing meets recollections session shared by the grown-up hero with his comrades in the trenches in World War I. The flakiness of the aunt's character in particular is commented on, and the episode comments on the looping, gullible behaviour of NPCs in adventure games in general.

After that I was thinking: In the reality of this game, to what extent did the stuff that I'm doing in 1892 happen in the manner I'm performing it? Does the extent matter? Does the question matter?
Other quotes from contemporary language pop up during the game ("weapons of mass destruction") and occasionally an appropriate third person quote will materialise in the centre of the screen. Some will enjoy these whimsical movements but I found they distracted me from acquiring a focused sense of this game.

My other problem was that I eventually sank to cleaving to the hints. Not out of great exasperation or because I think this game is extremely difficult, which I don't, but because it does demand some actions be performed at quite a fine scale. For instance, (Spoiler - click to show)having to arrange the particular letter amongst the contents of the sermon folder. I felt the same about trying to clean the chimney or trying to (Spoiler - click to show)make the object with which to clean the chimney. Having a sense of "OK, that's what I meant," a few times in a row does grate on me when I have to keep returning to a nested hints menu to tweak my commands to success. I'm much more in favour of adaptive hints in general, and not having to go in and out of menus whenever possible.

In spite of my wobbly feelings about the aesthetic of the game as a whole, I did like the fineness of the social puzzles (though they were also too fine-grained for me) and Aunt Emma's patience in answering my questions about her ceaseless catalogue of mantel knickknacks.
Note: this review is based on older version of the game.

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
A pre-WWI era escape the room game as a little boy , February 3, 2016
In this mid-length, well-polished parser game, you play a young boy who is stuck inside on a nice summers day with his maiden aunt and boring reverend uncle.

You have to escape using a series of clever moves, such as emotional manipulation and standard search, take, combine/use.

The walkthrough is short, but the atmosphere and parser messages are nice.

The game has a hidden framing story, generally worked in with Easter eggs. This framing story added some poignancy to the game that really improved it.

See All 4 Member Reviews

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Polls

The following polls include votes for Sunday Afternoon:

Games with Books/Bookshelves/Libraries by Andrew Schultz
I'm interested in games with lots of books you can read through. Maybe it's just a lot of cool titles and authors. Maybe they're randomly or procedurally generated. Maybe they reference pop culture, or maybe they're the author's own...

For Your Consideration: Games from 2012 that should be nominated for the XYZZY Awards by Molly
There were a lot of great games released in the past year, and now that the XYZZYs are coming up, it seems like a very good idea to take a poll of all the games from last year people would like to see nominated. The management has asked...

Games for language learners by Emily Boegheim
What are some good games for people trying to learn another language? I imagine that short games with relatively simple prose and not too many non-standard commands (if they're parser games) would work best, but feel free to suggest...

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This is version 6 of this page, edited by blue/green on 29 August 2015 at 12:39am. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item