Have you played this game?You can rate this game, record that you've played it, or put it on your wish list after you log in.
Playlists and Wishlists
RSS FeedsNew member reviews
Updates to downloadable files
All updates to this page
About the StoryTaco Fiction is a game about crime.
1st Place overall; 1st Place, Miss Congeniality Award - 17th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2011)
Nominee, Best Writing; Nominee, Best Individual NPC; Nominee, Best Implementation - 2011 XYZZY Awards
"Taco Fiction is a game about crime. There are many aspects to crime and the primary theme of the game is precariousness. You, as the nameless protagonist, are in a precarious financial state which leads you to criminal acts, and the world you occupy in Taco Fiction is itself precarious with few things exactly as they seem. With this in mind, we might expect the game's implementation to facilitate this sense of precariousness, and so it does."
See the full review
|Average Rating: |
Number of Reviews: 9
Write a review
Most Helpful Member Reviews
The reason I've wanted to is that Taco Fiction is a really important game to me; I first picked it up several years ago, when I was only into IF very casually (i.e., mostly doing coding exercises in Inform 7 and failing to complete Spider and Web). I had played the basic beginners' canon (Lost Pig, 9:05, De Baron...), and somehow in the midst of that, I came upon this game. Taco Fiction blew me away.
For a long time after playing it, Taco Fiction existed in my head as a prototype of what a perfect text adventure should be. And I think the reason it stuck with me (as opposed to, say, Lost Pig or Spider and Web, fine games though they are) is that it was purely fun. I have a poor head for puzzles, and I can only put with dark stuff for so long. Taco Fiction was fun. I never got stuck, I never got a default command; I was startled by (Spoiler - click to show)the cops in the diner (a masterful moment), and in the final scene my heart was sent racing. The rest of the time I spent smiling.
There are a lot of things to praise about Taco Fiction. The simulacrum of an "open world" is particularly impressive, given that this is essentially a linear game, plot-wise. The world is not huge, but there are characters who you can talk to for quite a bit longer than you would think with an expansive menu-based conversation system, and you can wander around doing essentially pointless things like purchasing and buying ice cream - but not out of adventure-game boredom, or an "amusing things to do" ethos; it's the kind of thing the PC would do, and you're free to do it as well. In between the delightfully weird, page-turning plot, of course. One with surprisingly subtle and insightful political points (in the least sordid sense of that word) to make.
Yes, I'm gushing. The reason I've put off reviewing Taco Fiction for so long is that it's hard to know what to write when something is just good. It's the game that made me excited about IF, that made me want to write my own, it turned me on to the rest of Veeder's excellent work, and it remained for years in my head the model against which all other works of IF would be compared.
Taco Fiction deserves to be canonized with the very best of modern interactive fiction.
Taco Fiction seems like a trifle: it's comedic (and quite funny), and the plot is as light as it could be in a game where you can point your gun at anyone you meet. That seems like sort of the point though; this game could have been quite bleak; the PC is desperate and doing desperate things. There's nothing in the game that needs to be funny, but the comedic touch lightens the tone enough to make it consistently compelling.
The world of the game is quite detailed, and actually becomes more of a playground for the player than it seems at first. A straight walkthrough to the best ending would miss about 75% of the content, so it's worth your while to just wander around, talking to all the NPCs and trying out different activities. There are a couple scenes that I found particularly well done (Spoiler - click to show) -- the charades and the Star Wars story are delivered perfectly -- and your initial entry into the taco shop is one of the tensest and most unnerving scenes I've played in any IF. (Spoiler - click to show) Consider the clear uneasiness of the PC from the first moments of the game, the litany of actions that you're going to take, that disturbing painting which catches your eye as you walk in, then the masterful revelation about the bikers. It all functions exquisitely to ratchet up the tension. There are no really difficult puzzles here, just a lovely little game about crime.
What follows is an unexpectedly light, mostly comical (but at times tense!) mystery that takes you in bizarre and unexpected directions. The NPCs are delightful and respond appropriately to what you do with your gun. The puzzles are also light, well-clued, and set the appropriate pacing. My only main criticism is the endgame, which feels a bit rushed and unsatisfying. I felt like the game was just starting to explore the characters and setting and then it was over. At least there are a couple of endings available depending on your motivations for the character at the end.
See All 9 Member Reviews
If you enjoyed Taco Fiction...
Related GamesPeople who like Taco Fiction also gave high ratings to these games:
|Speculative Fiction, by Diane Christoforo and Thomas Mack|
Average member rating: (8 ratings)
A puzzle game about committing acts of financial skulduggery and exploiting ridiculous magical items. This game is the complete version of the one that appeared in IntroComp 2011, where it won second place.
The Reptile Room, by Elizabeth Smyth
Average member rating: (4 ratings)
|Attack of the Clockwork Army, by Felicity Banks|
Average member rating: (4 ratings)
Win the Steam-Powered Fight for a Nation! When the battle for Australia begins, will you join Her Majestyís new clockwork army to keep Australia peacefully British once and for allóor will you cast your lot with a ragged crowd of...
Recommended ListsTaco Fiction appears in the following Recommended Lists:
A starter pack for those new to interactive fiction by MathBrush
I had a list like this before which I deleted, but I noticed it had a lot of views on intfiction, so I thought I'd make a new one to help people out. It has 10 web-based games, 10 parser games for beginners and 10 parser games of medium...
Games that made me smile by MathBrush
I wanted to do a list of comedy games, but I think people rarely think "I want to play a comedy game"; to me, the phrase brings up some kind of jokey, goofy game, like many of the poorly made Twine games that people make now. Instead,...
List of games with 'forced input' by dutchmule
This is a list of games which use a specific text effect, which I call "forced input" here (don't know if it has a better name): it's when the game shows you a command prompt, but regardless of what the player types, the command that...
PollsThe following polls include votes for Taco Fiction:
Humble Beginnings by Floating Info
What are some games that start off with the PC in a regular situation but turn into something different? This would include a regular person finding a portal to a fantasy world, or a regular person already in a fantasy world abruptly...
Comfort Food IF by Molly
Lately I've been chasing away the blues by playing through my IF backlog. This made me wonder, what IF do you play as a pick-me-up? Maybe it's something that calms and soothes you, maybe it's really funny, or maybe it just distracts you...
This is version 7 of this page, edited by Jason McIntosh on 8 April 2014 at 1:01pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item