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Six Silver Bullets

by William Dooling

Mystery
2018

(based on 5 ratings)
2 member reviews

About the Story

You are the Silver Agent, a spy who has lost their mind.

You are alone in the city, without your memories...but you do have a mission, and it changes every time you play.

You also have your silver gun. It will kill any agent you choose to kill...but you only have six bullets. The city is full of agents. Friends and rivals, former lovers and mortal enemies. Can you accomplish your mission? Should you?

Decide quickly. There is not much time.

Game Details

Language: English (en)
First Publication Date: October 1, 2018
Current Version: Unknown
License: Freeware
Development System: ADRIFT
IFID: Unknown
TUID: osaqoppea2bdvvpf

Awards

31st Place - 24th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2018)

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Member Reviews

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3 star:
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Number of Reviews: 2
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
Immersive, addictive spy-themed game with some implementation problems, February 23, 2019
I spent more time playing Six Silver Bullets than I did any of the other IFComp 2018 games during the competition period. Its immersive, addictive gameplay kept me engaged for hours.

The game itself is parser-based and written with ADRIFT. You wake up in a hotel room with your memories gone, a locked safe, a mysterious note, a silver gun, and six silver bullets. It turns out you're "Silver," one of several secret agents with colored code names.

The story is written in a noir-like style, complete with six-shooter, a femme fatale you meet early on, and short, clipped sentences. Also, the locations are more like archetypes than they are locations in some real world. For example, there are The Restaurant, The Church, The Hamlet, The Library, etc.

As is usual for a game featuring amnesia, the goal is to figure out what's going on. The mysterious note may or may not be from someone you can trust, and the people that you meet may or may not be looking out for your best interests.

The gameplay, though, is what kept me sticking with Six Silver Bullets for hours. It is very easy to get killed in this game. But that's intended: On each playthrough you gain more information about what's going on, and you can use that information on subsequent playthroughs to uncover even more of the story. In this sense it's a lot like Ryan Veeder's game The Lurking Horror II: The Lurkening from last year. However, Six Silver Bullets is MUCH larger and has a much more complicated plot than The Lurkening. In fact, there are all kinds of plot twists and turns; I kept changing my mind about which of the characters were trustworthy and even what goals I wanted to pursue.

The endgame is satisfying, providing you with a narratively consistent explanation of the entire setting, as well as why you can continue to die and replay the story.

The only thing that kept Six Silver Bullets from being one of my very favorite IFComp 2018 games is its implementation. Some of this may be ADRIFT's parser, but there are lots and lots of issues here - ranging from minor to serious to very frustrating. For example, you often have to type the entire name of an object, even when it's quite long. I really got tired of typing (Spoiler - click to show)"the gray microfilm canister" over and over. Sometimes you can just type one or two of the words, though. Also, sometimes you have to include "the" in front of a dialogue option, and sometimes you don't. More serious problems include dialog options that characters don't respond to, as well as several guess-the-verb issues. There was even one instance where the parser only accepted a particular misspelling of a word, not its correct spelling!

Still, frustrations aside, I very much enjoyed Six Silver Bullets - enough to keep playing the game for many hours. If these implementation issues could be fixed I'd easily rate this game as five stars. Even with the parser frustrations, I'd call it a four-star game.


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
A complex spy game with some interaction difficulties, November 21, 2018
by MathBrush
Related reviews: 2-10 hours
This is a game that was hard to play during the competition, for a few reasons, and those same reasons make it much better to play now.

-It is a large Adrift game, and Adrift is an engine where a lot of commands don't work. This game gives you hints about the commands in the text, but this requires careful reading of the text.

-This game is randomized, so you can't just repeat commands from memory. The map is the same, however.

-This game is big. It has a few dozen locations, runs on a timer, and has many NPCs with many interaction options. There are little encounters too that happen frequently.

-This game is hard. Really hard. I played it 5 or 6 times before completing one of the biggest mission objectives. You have to keep track of tons of things: where stuff is located, where people are, what times things happen.

So this is definitely a game to be savored. But it is rewarding.

If you enjoyed Six Silver Bullets...

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This is version 2 of this page, edited by Doug Orleans on 18 November 2018 at 9:05pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item