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 puzzle game about committing acts of financial skulduggery and exploiting ridiculous magical items. This game is the complete version of the one that appeared in IntroComp 2011, where it won second place.
Nominee, Best Individual NPC; Nominee, Best Implementation - 2012 XYZZY Awards
Sparkly IF Reviews
The game is gleeful about the amoral nature of its protagonist, and resoundingly silly. My favorite solutions involved elaborate ways of deceiving other characters, from playing on momentary inattention to setting up the NPCs for complex misapprehensions: the puzzle designs use the NPCs in ways that go well beyond executing standard fetch-quests or dispatching hostile guards.
-- Emily Short
See the full review
|Average Rating: |
Number of Reviews: 2
Write a review
At its core, the game is just a straightforward puzzler, but it handles the player/PC/parser divide in very entertaining fashion. You are a wizard whose mind is trapped in the body of his familiar: W.D., an uncompromisingly gluttonous raven who's not entirely thrilled to be sharing his body. You command W.D., and he describes the world and performs actions in a more-or-less ravenly way; the parser's voice is (almost) entirely his. In that sense, the game's structure bears a small resemblance to Suspended, I suppose. However, unlike the robots, W.D. has his own will, and can thwart you from time to time. He's also hilarious from start to finish.
Your wizard has recently looted the kingdom's treasury and replaced the gold therein with an illusion. Acting through W.D., you must find a way to replace all the stolen money before the treasurer gets hold of the king and you are executed. Replacing the money involves committing many more crimes. Some of these are sly, subtle jabs at recent financial industry malfeasance, like one involving a robo-signer. Others are a bit blunter and crueler.
W.D. is the game's great creation. Calling him a wisecracking bird would reduce him to an animated Disney sidekick; he's much better than that. It's tempting to list out dozens of great lines, but I'll restrict myself to just a couple:
A poorly-executed forgery of the treasurer's signature. I suspect his name is not actually "The Treasurer." I also suspect he knows how to spell "treasurer." I wish your Spelling Wasp had caught on, boss. That one should have made us millionaires. Anaphylactic shock is a small price to pay for proper spelling.
He's got no eyeballs. Man, that's the best part of the human.
Even if you solve none of the puzzles, you should have a pretty good time just reading W.D.'s descriptions (as well as an excellent fake-terrible disambiguation message in the Stock Market).
The game is structured so that it's possible to get a decent ending by solving only the easier puzzles. The more puzzles you can solve, the better an ending you can open up. This would seem to make it newbie-friendly, except that the puzzles do become very challenging, verging on underclued, including one I didn't even realize was a puzzle until I read ABOUT HINT (which does not actually dispense hints, but simply lists the primary tasks).
The implementation is decent with a few hiccups. The authors have replaced most of the default responses with W.D.-appropriate ones, and they're terrific. However, there are occasional missing line breaks, a repeated word or two, some unimplemented objects, and a couple of bugs (one of which which allowed me to short-circuit the game's cleverest puzzle, albeit in amusing fashion).
But frankly, it doesn't matter. W.D. is so ingenious that you should play Speculative Fiction just for the writing.
A fleshed-out introcomp game with magic system and odd pc, February 3, 2016
Anyways, this game is great for having its own magic system, for for allowing you to beat the game with only having solved 4 out of the big puzzles, and for making the first four easy. I smiled at the first bank puzzle. The last 3 puzzles and the endgame involve the old standbys of alchemy and complicated machinery that you have to experiment with.
Overall, this game is better-written and more funny than Frobozz magic support, and its two-tiered puzzle structure makes it more accessible and likely to be beaten than most such games, so I think this will be my go-to game to suggest to people in this sub-genre.
If you enjoyed Speculative Fiction...
Related GamesPeople who like Speculative Fiction also gave high ratings to these games:
|Suveh Nux, by David Fisher|
Average member rating: (177 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.
|My Evil Twin, by Carl Muckenhoupt|
Average member rating: (21 ratings)
After last night's all-nighter (I had an important report to do for work), I intended to sleep all through the day. But I can't afford to do that. Somewhere out there, my evil twin is plying his schemes, and I'm the only one who can stop...
|Down, the Serpent and the Sun, by Chandler Groover|
Average member rating: (20 ratings)
The feathered serpent coils before you, greater than any god or any monster. Maimed warriors are crushed beneath its claws. The sun will never rise again.
Recommended ListsSpeculative Fiction appears in the following Recommended Lists:
Zorkian fantasy games by MathBrush
My best fantasy games list is getting too long, so I decided to branch off a list of all Zorkian fantasy games. These are games that have a vague fantasy setting where anachronisms or inconsistencies are allowed, the game is goofy or...
Games of Infocom quality and length (or better) by MathBrush
These are games that are as long as an Infocom game (i.e. Shade would be too short) and are as good quality (so Colossal Cave Adventure, though fun, is out). By quality, I mean the kind of things accomplished by numerous testers: few...
Opus Ignored: Big games that didn't take off by MathBrush
It happens over and over: an author spends hundreds of hours on a game, often setting up a commercial company, and then releases it to almost total silence. This list contains such games, as well as other big games where the author was...
PollsThe following polls include votes for Speculative Fiction:
Split-up PC functionality by baf
In a normal game, there is a single fictional entity that is considered to be: - The protagonist: the character that the player is meant to identify with, and whose goals you are trying to achieve - The viewpoint character: the character...
First and Third Person Second Person Narratives by dacharya64
Not as complicated as it sounds! Interactive fiction is dominated by the iconic second person narrative (*You* find yourself in a room). But this is not the only way that these stories could be told. I'm looking for those games out there...
This is version 7 of this page, edited by Edward Lacey on 19 April 2013 at 1:37pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item