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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful:Twine in a nutshell, March 19, 2016
by LisbonThis was my first Twine game and, needless to say, it summarized my future expectations and experiences with most Twine games I've had the misfortune to come across in the future. It starts out fairly typical; you wake up in a (mostly) abandoned space station with little idea of what's going on. Eventually, after getting through the introduction bit, you're given something that almost looks like a real piece of interactive fiction. You're in a place, there are other places in cardinal directions, and there's things you can look at. Splendid. It turns out that only one of these places even matters in the long run, so you go there, do some things, and here's where the game gives you the boot.
I'm not sure how to word this any better without getting spoilery, so if you're worried about spoilers, don't click it. It shouldn't take you long to get through the game anyway.
(Spoiler - click to show)Nothing you do in this game matters. You can cooperate with this AI, you can fight this AI, you can struggle against this AI, and it will all end in the exact same manner. Imagine if, in System Shock 2, you pick up a gun and then a cutscene plays where you're thrown around by electrical wires controlled by SHODAN, get laughed at and told you're worthless, get chopped up and turned into a robot, and then get a game over screen, and that was the entire game. That's essentially what CYBERQUEEN is.
"But it's playing on themes of helplessness and is subverting the players' expectations that they're going on some sort of fictional AI-buttkicking power fantasy!"
Big deal. It's not fun or all that intriguing to have nothing I do matter. If I wanted that I wouldn't be on a website claiming to be about INTERACTIVE fiction. I'd go and read it on some website for short stories or something.
It's not poorly written, by any means. I've seen far worse. It's just about as interactive as a roller coaster. You click some links, get a slightly different paragraph than if you clicked the other links, then it's back to the main text. None of my choices mattered in the slightest, and, ultimately, that doesn't make this or the vast majority of Twine games enjoyable at all.
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Nathaniel, November 2, 2016 - Reply
The lack of interactivity is a common complaint of mine about twine games, though its not inherent in the system. I've written a couple myself with multiple story branches going parallel at any given time (with your decisions deciding which branch you're on), in addition to many different endings and ways to die. It does however multiply the time required to create them (so the one I tried to submit took about 6 times longer to write than if I had kept it more linear). Many of the branches are essentially entirely different games. Last I checked people never got around to approving the one I submitted, however. Porpentine does, however, write very well.
MathBrush, March 20, 2016 - Reply
I recommend Hallowmoor and the Axolotl Project if you want to try Twine where your choices matter, and also Draculaland, which is a Twine-parser medley.
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