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A Clockwork Noir

by Jeremy Lee Harden

Mystery
2020

Web Site

(based on 1 rating)
1 member review

About the Story

Welcome to New Jag City, the City of Gears and Cogs. You are Detective Adaran Valance, who is looking for a new case. What waits for you in the city that never sleeps?

Game Details

Language: English (en)
First Publication Date: July 22, 2020
Current Version: 5
License: Freeware
Development System: ZIL
IFID: Unknown
TUID: fek70ft3caghc1mz

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Member Reviews

Average Rating:
Number of Reviews: 1
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
Noir-themed gearpunk that could do with more polish, July 25, 2020
A fair stab at a noir-style thriller, featuring many tropes of the genre (a lone detective in search of a new case, a chanteuse murdered in a dingy nightclub, a restless city backdrop, etc). There is also a somewhat incidental gearpunk theme that pops up in the background occasionally (clockwork transport, a clockwork computer). I didn't finish it: I ended up not knowing what to do next, and there are no hints to help you along the way. The plot and characterisation are somewhat sketchy and many things are under-described or not described at all: mostly, what I've taken away from playing it is what I've filled in from my own expectations. In itself, it is slightly thin stuff, but I think there is potential for a good game here with some development of the story and characters.

There are some design irritations in the game: entering and leaving locations is a mixture of compass directions and 'in' and 'out', which is a bit confusing, and some of the exits are not reciprocal - in at least one place, you go east to enter a room and then go 'out' to leave it. There are also a load of doors that need to be opened explicitly for no very good reason, causing an unnecessary inconvenience (why put a shut door in the way if there is no need for it? Just let it be implicitly open so the player can get on their way). The main problem, though, is the writing which is, frankly, a bit shaky. There are a number of typos, some awkward sentence construction and a disorientating tendency to switch tenses (sometimes more than once) during passages. Perhaps the author isn't naturally a writer (not everyone is) but in any case the text could do with a good edit for sense and grammar.

As it stands, this is not quite polished enough to hit the mark for me - but a few drafts down the line, it could emerge as a decent game.

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This is version 1 of this page, edited by Nomad on 23 July 2020 at 4:04pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item