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The Shadow In The Snow

by Andrew Brown profile

Horror
2020

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Number of Reviews: 1
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
A horror game without tension, October 17, 2020
by deathbytroggles (Minneapolis, MN)
The Shadow in the Snow is a short Twine adventure that uses as many IF tropes as possible, including the broken down car on the side of the road, the spooky forest, and the spooky hotel. Using tropes is not necessarily a bad thing, but there are no surprises with this story and thus the tension is minimal.

Beyond the story, there are also several issues with the game design. While the game allows you to ostensibly tackle the exploration and puzzle in any order, there is actually only one path to victory despite it being unintuitive (and rather random) that the actual path is correct. Additionally, you can lock yourself out of victory without realizing it, though the game is short enough for it to be only a minor annoyance.

The writing style also doesn't work well for this type of game. Despite the fact that you are given choices to make for the PC, it is written in the first person, which detaches one's self from the choices. There's also a lack of rhythm to the writing, with many short paragraphs, excessive ellipses, and a lack of sensory descriptions to the surroundings. An awkward simile is one example:

"The back window has been smashed out as if a large beast had leaped through it."

Honestly, I have no idea what that looks like or if windows smash differently if large beasts, small beasts, or table lamps have propelled through them.

This is the first game I have played by Andrew Brown. Looking back at their previous games, many reviews cite the lack of editing and beta-testing, and this game appears to have the same concerns.