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About the StoryYou may think this game is about a post-Soviet Research Institute. About an experiment that went out of control. You may think that the initials "I.A.G." are somehow related to the Institute. You may think this game is unfinished. You may even think that the game ends exactly as the author tells you.
But then you will figure it out -- these statements are not entirely true.
* There are two endings in this game.
* Credits roll at the end of the game.
* If you do not see the credits roll, you haven't reached the end of the game. Yet.
Nominee, Best Game; Nominee, Best Puzzles; Nominee - Rooftop puzzle, Best Individual Puzzle; Nominee - Ruslan, Best Individual NPC; Nominee - Nikolai, Best Individual PC; Winner, Best Use of Innovation - 2018 XYZZY Awards
18th Place - 24th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2018)
All the different interfaces are well done individually and combine into a coherent whole. The conceit of reviving an earlier buggy game is charming, and the missing graphics and author notes throughout the game are excellent touches.
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McT's Interactive Fiction Reviews
Truly meta, in the best possible sense, this little puzzly choice game is a delight. It is anything but incomplete, this game. It is a completely polished little gem. <...> The only ding this game gets is for its length. I’m thoroughly enjoying it, then it ends. I do get it though – this must have taken quite a bit of implementing.
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The Breakfast Review
On the whole, I found this to be an intriguing little gem of a puzzle. The writing was fairly terse, which I found to be a relief after some of the wordier offerings so far. It felt to be just right for what the game was. And the Soviet complex setting did seem very suitable to the mechanics of the game, though of course they're technically unrelated; so did the general visual presentation of the yellowed drafting paper background. Very nice.
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Number of Reviews: 3
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You play a little further, and you eventually come to realize that the "unfinished" aspect of the game you are purportedly playing is entirely intentional - in fact, it's a setup for the real game to pull what I think is the most genius meta move I've ever seen. I really don't want to spoil it by giving it away, but it's so simple and yet so fundamental. And that's what makes it work so well.
An absolutely brilliant game.
I.A.G. Alpha was a hoot to play, from start to finish, and kept me guessing right up until the end. It was on the lighter side in terms of "wordiness" and, with getting tripped up by a puzzle or two at the end, only took about 2 hours to play through.
The writing is good, where it exists, but like the author points out in the description, the game is unfinished... wink, wink. The puzzles range from pretty easy to moderately challenging. One non-spoiler hint I'll leave you with: utilize the save functionality, particularly as you progress into the latter part of the game.
It runs in ITCH and is primarily choice-based. The conceit is that the author wanted to develop a big, fun sci-fi fi puzzle game, but didn't succeed.
Instead, he leaves the frame of his unfinished game alone, and adds author commentary. As the game progresses, the protagonist has more and more power to affect the game itself.
The styling is excellent, with several beautiful images and switches between different interfaces. The music is lovely and appropriate.
This is a game made with love, and it shows.
If you enjoyed I.A.G. Alpha...
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