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 StoryA one-location game in which you play a series of puzzles against a shopkeeper in order to get a present.
[--blurb from The Z-Files Catalogue]
3rd Place, Inform Division - First Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (1995)
-- Carl Muckenhoupt
The limited vocabulary set combined with the sketchy descriptions of what is going on reduce Toyshop to one of the most frustrating games of "guess the verb" that I've had the misfortune to encounter in years.
See the full review
Each time you solve a puzzle, you miraculously notice something else in the shop, which of course is part of the next puzzle. This makes the game very linear, as you only have one puzzle available to solve at any given time - solving it then produces another puzzle which either pops out of nowhere, or is given to you by Catharine.
See the full review
|Average Rating: |
Number of Reviews: 2
Write a review
This game is much more akin to "Hunt the Wumpus" or some other ASCII mainframe relic than it is to a work of IF. It has a framing story, but that story in no way affects the gameplay. Gameplay consists of a series of increasingly devious logic puzzles, most of which are based on the kinds of pen-and-paper games that kept kids busy on rainy days before the invention of the game console. To advance, you often have to figure out a way to creatively cheat. While this is somewhat amusing, it is also slightly perverse -- you have no motivation for doing so other than to "win" by any means necessary.
As if that weren't enough, the game loses its consistency about two thirds of the way through and introduces a "puzzle" requiring knowledge of the Infocom classic Trinity (and others?) to even have a clue how to proceed. Resorting to the walkthrough did not leave me with a sense of failure -- only puzzlement that the author could expect anyone but himself to figure out the right sequence of moves.
Should you make it to the end of this player/author grudge match, you are sent packing with little more than a cursory "*** You have won. ***" and no sense of accomplishment.
It is hard to imagine, but this all-work-and-no-play entry scored 3rd in the Comp. While this piece may be worth examining by a programmer for its noteworthy adaptation of classic timewaster games, it holds little value to a player -- except maybe the kind of militant puzzle fiend one can only find in Britain. I would not bother with this one unless you really get the urge to solve bent logic puzzles using a text parser.
The puzzles are unfair, and you must cheat to beat about half of them.
The game is full of homages to Curses! and Trinity. Several puzzles require explicit knowledge of these two games. Even with this knowledge, some steps near the end are extremely difficult to guess.
This game is interesting as a sample game and for fans of puzzles as described above.
If you enjoyed The Magic Toyshop...
Related GamesOther members recommend these games for people who like The Magic Toyshop, or gave both high ratings:
|Suveh Nux, by David Fisher|
Average member rating: (183 ratings)
An entry in the 2007 One Room Game Competition. You play a magician's servant who gets trapped in your master's vault; you'll need to learn some of his tricks if you want to get out.
|Alabaster, by John Cater, Rob Dubbin, Eric Eve, Elizabeth Heller, Jayzee, Kazuki Mishima, Sarah Morayati, Mark Musante, Emily Short, Adam Thornton, Ziv Wities|
Average member rating: (102 ratings)
The Queen has told you to return with her heart in a box. Snow White has made you promise to make other arrangements. Now that you're alone in the forest, it's hard to know which of the two women to trust. The Queen is certainly a witch...
|Kaged, by Ian Finley|
Average member rating: (46 ratings)
""But my madness speaks: It will but skin and film the ulcerous place, Whilst rank corruption, mining all within, Infects unseen." Welcome to the Citadel of Justice. The Inquisitor is waiting." [--blurb from Competition Aught-Zero]
Recommended ListsThe Magic Toyshop appears in the following Recommended Lists:
Most unusual games by MathBrush
These are games that are very different than most games on IFDB. Some games that are exceptional in execution (like Counterfeit Monkey) are derived from concepts that are similar to other games (like Andrew Schultz's or Ad Verbum). This...
PollsThe following polls include votes for The Magic Toyshop:
This is version 4 of this page, edited by Nathan on 9 September 2019 at 1:39pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item