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This game is playable online at http://jayisgames.​com/​cgdc7/?gameID=8
Story file
Release 251
For all systems. To play, you'll need a Z-Machine Interpreter with Blorb support - visit Brass Lantern for download links.
Story file
For all systems. To play, you'll need a Z-Machine Interpreter with Blorb support - visit Brass Lantern for download links.

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Into the Open Sky

by Matthew Lindquist

Science fiction
2010

(based on 2 ratings)
1 member review

About the Story

Repair an ancient starship named Nightingale. Discover the ship's past by exploring and unlocking 11 hidden entries in the computer. Most important: escape from the gray skies of your world and soar "Into the Open Sky".

Game Details

Language: English (en)
First Publication Date: February 2, 2010
Current Version: 251
License: Freeware
Development System: Inform 7
IFID: 2E66AA88-C468-4052-9FA8-720F7383F55E
TUID: zsmf6odrnyxp3unh

Awards

9th Place - Casual Gameplay Design Competition #7

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
Ambitious story, modest implementation, March 17, 2014
Into the Open Sky tells a big sweeping story: after many generations, an interstellar empire is brought down by internal betrayal, the great starships that defended the Empress turn against one another, and access to the Imperial time vortex, the Palace of Mirrors, is lost. There are many additional pieces of lore: love stories, myths, bits of imperial history, and hints of the protagonist's own complicated and storied past. Many of these stories and pieces of information are presented through database entries and diaries that can be unlocked, in a way faintly reminiscent of (but less disciplined than) Christine Love's Analogue: A Hate Story.

The gameplay aspects of the piece are not up to the scale of the narrative conception, however. There are a few key scenes of present-day dialogue or combat, but these are delivered as cut scenes; when it comes to the aspects under the player's control, they involve tasks like swapping out power couplings and giving predefined commands at particular starship consoles. There are a number of minor polish issues, as well -- for instance, descriptions that describe a particular object being a particular place even though the player may have already picked that item up.

The structure of the game also gives somewhat the impression that the author significantly scaled back his initial plans. There are some doors that never become openable through the whole game, and others which open only during an epilogue sequence at the end, when the player is told to wander around gathering as much data as she likes, then quit when she's done. So in this portion one gets the impression that the author originally intended a longer sequence of gameplay to introduce those rooms and objects organically, but perhaps ran out of time to make that happen.

Despite all this, there were some striking and vividly imagined pieces to the story, which kept me interested enough to play through to the end.

I came away thinking that perhaps the author would have had an easier time with choice-based rather than parser-based IF: the larger sections of non-interactive text would have flowed more naturally in that context, and some of the puzzles could have been implemented in a more streamlined way, allowing the author to focus on the expansive lore-telling that seemed to interest him most.

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The following polls include votes for Into the Open Sky:

Neil Armstrong Commemorative Space Poll by Joey Jones
I'm hankering to play a good space-themed game. That is to say, a game not necessarily set in space, but a game that is in some way about space or our relation to space. Any takers?

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This is version 3 of this page, edited by David Welbourn on 11 April 2010 at 9:19am. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item