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Reviews by thecanvasrose

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1-6 of 6


My Very Own Train Station, by Niklas GlÝsen
A Superb Philosophical Short Deserving of Attention, October 7, 2019
This short only offers the player a handful of choices, but that doesn't negate the fact that it has excellent writing and visuals. It presents sort of an unusual take on IF, but I personally loved it very much! It took me off guard initially and I wasn't sure what to make of it at first, but throw your expectations out the door and give "My Very Own Train Station" a whirl. It's deserving of attention and praise.

What was my only critique against this game was that it is easy to quickly reach an ending and that to get another one, you have to start over again and again - I wasn't sure how I felt about this recursive quality during play. However, I came to feel that this trait really fits the game, a day or so after play.

The mundane repetitiveness of the story, how thoroughly the player is willing to read through all of it and the main character's primary dilemma of escaping a rigid environment tie together to the game's overarching ideas and themes. "My Very Own Train Station" was carefully made. Well made. Be careful to give it good time and thought.

The Horrible Pyramid, by Ryan Veeder

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
Yeah, it's a Fun Short, October 7, 2019
This would be a very solid pick for people new to IF, but otherwise, I wouldn't call this one particularly memorable. It is fun and well built. I enjoyed it on the first go, but I wasn't wowed by it. I'll never play it again. I prefer Veeder's bigger games, and if I were to introduce someone to his work, I'm not sure I'd start with this one unless they were totally unfamiliar with IF.

One Eye Open, by Caelyn Sandel (as Colin Sandel) and Carolyn VanEseltine
My Favorite Parser Game, October 7, 2019
Yes, "One Eye Open" is over the top, but it's just so well fleshed out (heh heh, "fleshed out") and engaging that I cannot help but absolutely adore it. That and I'm already sort of a sucker for horror games anyways. This game has great replay value, the story runs near cinematically (that is, no matter what choices I made, the story felt cohesive), the dark humor is on point and it plays a variety of tropes to clever and original ends. 10 out of 10 from me.

American Election, by Greg Buchanan

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
Worthy of XYZZY nomination, when the time comes., September 13, 2019
I'm currently a little short on time to write a review at the moment - I'll come back to his later to write one.

First Times, by Hero Robb
In terms of scare factor, this is the best horror game I've ever played., July 23, 2019
by thecanvasrose
Related reviews: horror
Okay. So there are other horror interactive fiction games out there that are objectively cleaner and smoother than "First Times."

"Anchorhead" is wildly immersive, detailed and, in terms of build, it's a work of art. "One Eye Open" is messy, fun and provides the player with an eerie sense of adventure. "Bogeyman" is a kind of tearjerker that will give you nightmares.

And then there's this oddity. Maybe it has bugs, is a bit too disorienting to solve and isn't necessarily one for the plotline. Yet in terms of scare factor, this is the best horror game I've ever played. Cults, zombie creatures and cannibalism will always be creepy. But pulling an egg out of a doll's stomach? It should never have had to be creepy because I shouldn't have ever had to picture it in my life - if it weren't for this game.

"First Times" hosts a few cliches - creepy hospital, demonic entities - but where it stands strong is where it is really rather original, where an empty stage or a mural of a castle or a room full of stuffed animals manage to send more chills down your spine than your average zombie attack. These elements never quite come together too cleanly, but these elements within themselves are insanely cool and insanely scary.

Play it if you enjoy feeling regret. (I mean this in a good way!)

Zork I, by Marc Blank and Dave Lebling

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
Look. I have yet to find a game as satisfying as 'Zork 1.', May 5, 2019
If you've never played 'Zork 1' before, give it a spin. As for myself, 'Zork 1' is the first interactive fiction game I've ever played. Maybe it isn't the friendliest game for beginners of IF, but I'm personally glad that I began with this clasic masterpiece.

What 'Zork 1' did well, in my opinion, is that it hooked me right away. The opening scene - and this is not a spoiler, it's the start of the game - where the player is placed in front of a mysterious white house is purely brilliant. My brother and I, who I first played this with, would brag to each other via text who made it furthest into the game. It was thrilling to text to him that 'Hey! I made it past the house!' or 'I did it - I killed (Spoiler - click to show)that horrible thief!'

So maybe it was the rivalry I had ongoing with my brother in playing this game that made it so exciting and gratifying to me on my first play, but 'Zork 1' really is clever when it comes to its presentation of exploration and surprise.

Don't miss this one.


1-6 of 6