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About the StoryIt's late fifteenth century Scotland, and the dangerous world of the Anglo-Scottish Border Reivers. A murder has been committed, and it's your task as the Warden's son to try to find out who was responsible. Can you solve the mystery before it's too late? Or will others die before the criminal is unmasked?
46th Place - 24th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2018)
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Number of Reviews: 2
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This is a fairly big conversational game set in medieval Scotland. The player must converse with over a dozen characters to figure out who is planning a murder.
The ambitious game design makes this feel epic, and it's exciting to get tangled up in the web of deceit. However, the large number of characters and the many topics makes for a combinatorial explosion, and it becomes easy to get lost in a forest of information.
The author has an Introcomp game that is also set in medieval times that is worth checking out.
At the beginning of Border Reivers you are summoned by your father to help solve a murder, that of the son of one of the local lairds. The opening text says you have suspicions that something is going on in addition to the murder.
Gameplay mostly consists of asking various characters (and there are over a dozen of these!) about each other, the murder, the castle, and various other related topics.
I think Border Reviers is particularly strong on setting. The writing is also good, and the implementation is solid. Perhaps more of the default responses could have been changed, but then again that doesn't matter a whole lot in a conversation-focused game like this one.
I think the game is weaker when it comes to the investigation of the murder. I would have liked more clues to discover and analyze. As it stands, there are a few conversation topics that function as clues, but other than those there is only one physical clue in the game (that I saw, at least).
Border Reivers also has a particular crucial event occur after a certain number of terms, potentially revealing who's guilty before you've actually figured that out. This limits the game's replay value.
Overall, strong setting, good writing, and solid implementation, but more physical investigation and an alternative method for having a particular crucial event occur would have made Border Reivers more fun to play.
Border Reivers on IFDB
Recommended ListsBorder Reivers appears in the following Recommended Lists:
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PollsThe following polls include votes for Border Reivers:
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This is version 3 of this page, edited by Vivienne Dunstan on 17 November 2018 at 9:25pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item