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DEVOTIONALIA

by G. Grimoire profile

Episode 1 of Sacred Tides series
Ritual
2018

Web Site

(based on 11 ratings)
1 member review

About the Story

The high priest of an obscure cult is preparing a ritual. Don the priest’s sacred mantle, for these holy labors are yours to direct. You may carve a votive, lead a prayer, or make a sacrifice — but you must see to the task with care. Unearthly eyes gaze down upon you from the sea above. Will your devotion reach them?

Does it matter?

Game Details

Language: English (en)
First Publication Date: October 1, 2018
Current Version: Post-Comp Release
License: Freeware
Development System: Twine
IFID: Unknown
TUID: xkzeym50xgewwi4w

Awards

20th Place (tie) - 24th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2018)

Editorial Reviews

These Heterogenous Tasks

Music, darkness, melancholy, the unknowably alien, and the space to absorb them. That’s the mood which Devotionalia is after, and it skewers it like a moth on a specimen-board.
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The Breakfast Review
The piece seems to be about the nature of religious devotion. The unfamiliarity of the story's deity and cosmology serves to isolate the acts of prayer and sacrament so that they can be looked at without our own beliefs getting in the way. There's a lot here that's really worth contemplating.

As a breakfast, I think it's rice congee with a firm, white fish, topped with flakes of crispy fried onions and fresh chives. It has an ascetic look, but threads of ginger and sesame oil boiled in with the rice make it surprisingly flavourful. And then, piping hot green tea.
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McT's Interactive Fiction Reviews

In a way, this game reminds me of the works of Chandler Groover and Phantom Williams. It has a similar rich aesthetic. A surreal, haunting feel. A sense that there’s more hidden below the surface. [...] The interface matches the ambition of the prose. The music is atmospheric and appropriate. The aesthetics of the design are completely aligned to the game experience.

It’s something a little bit special, this.
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IFComprehensive

The pensive mood of the game supports its plot. The author handles the alien details of the world well, showing rather than telling and focusing on the story rather than belaboring the setting details. It’s a much more original setting and plot than most games have, and the author provides just enough details to make it comprehensible but still mysterious, befitting the priest’s uncertainty about his gods.
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catacalypto
It mostly does one thing, which is ‘an evocative, doomed setting of a cultist tending to a dying ritual’, but it does that one thing very, very well. The music and design choices heighten the experience; it’s probably one of the most slickly-produced games this year.
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Member Reviews

5 star:
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4 star:
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Number of Reviews: 1
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A short dark fantasy game about an ancient religion, December 24, 2018
by MathBrush
Related reviews: 15-30 minutes
I beta tested this game.

Devotionalia is a shortish but replayable fantasy game that is all about atmosphere and contemplation. It is a choice-based game, but not immediately recognizable as Twine, due to the extreme customization: graphics, music, many variants of link types, and more.

The game comes with a helpful instruction page. Essentially, you are a priest of an ancient religion, the gods almost forgotten. You wish to learn from them, and thus you make your devotions.

There's not an action-driven story or a big cast of characters. It's a somber reflection on life. If you've ever seen the painting "The Monk by the Sea" by Caspar David Friedrich, this game is essentially the interactive fiction version of that painting.

If you enjoyed DEVOTIONALIA...

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This is version 5 of this page, edited by Grim on 31 December 2018 at 12:40pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item