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About the Story"A text adventure based on the folklore of the Miwok Indians of the Yosemite area." [--blurb from Competition '99]
29th Place - 5th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (1999)
-- Duncan Stevens
>VERBOSE -- Paul O'Brian's Interactive Fiction Page
From the update on the comp web site, I already knew that The Water Bird had a game-killing bug in it, so I wasn't surprised when I found it. What I was surprised by (though maybe I shouldn't have been) was the number of other, extremely basic, bugs I found in it. This is unusual for me -- usually once I see or hear of one bug in a competition game I expect them to come in droves, but the opening text to The Water Bird is so good that I allowed myself the belief that the critical bug was just a really bad-luck oversight, one of those things that makes you just about swallow your own tongue as an author the second a player finds it and it's TOO LATE to change a thing. But no, actually, there are bugs throughout the game. In fact, in only the game's second location, attempts to walk in an unavailable direction are met with "[TADS-1023: invalid type for built-in function]". This extremely fundamental omission is emblematic of the unfinished feel that the entire game has.
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Number of Reviews: 2
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Basically, bad mechanics ruined what could have been a very interesting story. I was so disappointed I couldn't finish the game.
A great game plagued with many bugs, about Indian folklore, July 16, 2017
Big and ambitious, this game was massively buggy during the competition and placed in the bottom 10. It was updated later, fixing many but not all problems. I recommend playing with the walkthrough to see the great story.
The Water Bird on IFDB
PollsThe following polls include votes for The Water Bird:
Lost Treasures of the IF Comp by Molly
It seems that for every Comp game that's still talked about today (e.g., Slouching Towards Bedlam, Shade, Photopia, etc.), there's ten or so that have been almost completely forgotten; some of them even placed in the top ten or higher....
Games with Native themes by Chad Comeau
I've been wondering if there are any IF games dealing with Native American or First Nations themes. I have yet to discover a game that meaningfully deals with this topic. Thanks!
This is version 3 of this page, edited by Paul O'Brian on 6 May 2008 at 12:38pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item