Home | Profile - Edit | Your Page | Your Inbox Browse | Search Games   |   Log In

Download



stopnight.z5
For all systems. To play, you'll need a Z-Machine Interpreter - visit Brass Lantern for download links.

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 Feeds

New member reviews
Updates to downloadable files
All updates to this page

A Stop For The Night

by Joe Mason

Fantasy/Horror
2003

(based on 2 ratings)
1 member review

Game Details

Language: English (en)
Current Version: Unknown
License: Freeware
Development System: Inform 6
Baf's Guide ID: 2138
IFID: ZCODE-1-030425-9ABF
TUID: s2s2nda0r0qoe4a6

Awards

Best of Landscape, Landscape - 2003 IF Art Show

Tags

- View the most common tags (What's a tag?)
(Log in to add your own tags)

Member Reviews

5 star:
(0)
4 star:
(1)
3 star:
(1)
2 star:
(0)
1 star:
(0)
Average Rating:
Number of Reviews: 1
Write a review


8 of 8 people found the following review helpful:
Experiment with navigation, July 15, 2008
by Ron Newcomb (Seattle)
A Stop For The Night won Best Of Landscape in the 2003 IF Art Show. Presented as a small horror exploration, it experiments with alternate navigation methods as a way to heighten tension. The piece uses three methods: relative directions (left and right), door-oriented travel, and direct navigation (such as "KITCHEN").

The first presents the environment as the character sees it, and reinforces the knowledge of exactly where he stands: at a very specific point in space. As a description, it works; I'm made to feel as if I'm just a small person, a mere dot, entering this sinister place. But as a navigation aid, it fails. Like all IF before it, winding one's way through a map using left and right is disorientating, even if the map is a perfect grid. (The cardinal directions are relegated to the outside world of stars and sun.)

The second attempts to preserve a staple of the horror genre -- the moment of uncertainty just as you open a door leading to the unknown. It does that somewhat well, as you are quite focused on the door and any distinguishing characteristics it possesses to glean what might lay beyond. Unfortunately, given the shape and size of the map, this first presents the player with multiple rooms of twisted little doors, all alike. The suspense of such choices are quickly diluted by repetition. Later, after the map is explored, navigation is too focused on the doors rather than the rooms to which they lead.

The game's direct navigation system kicks in to compensate. You may enter the adjacent previously-visited room merely by stating its name. It's an improvement over Bronze as you needn't preface it with GO TO, but it lacks Bronze's ability to skip through multiple rooms at once. This tends to make puzzles more tedious as you flit from room to room searching for that one item that might be useful in that one place.

This particular work's implementation of the three navigation systems isn't perfect; even a fully-explored map needs an occasional Left or Right. But it certainly fulfills its purpose as an experiment. I learned a few things. I can conceive of navigating a new world by constellations whose location in the night sky change by time and season, but know the navigation-as-puzzle limits the remainder of the work to conversation and psychology. Single-word direct navigation allows one to concentrate on the puzzle or task at hand, rather than the minutiae of getting from point B back to A again. And a little disorientation from self-centric navigation among injured and individualized doors can tell a story in itself, but once you discover that the ominous, mystical wooden door with the crescent moon engraving leads not to the spellchamber, but to the privy, it's time then to concentrate on the higher reasons for all the walking around.

If you enjoyed A Stop For The Night...

Related Games

People who like A Stop For The Night also gave high ratings to these games:

The Chasing, by Anssi Räisänen
Average member rating: (8 ratings)

Best of Three, by Emily Short
Average member rating: (54 ratings)

The Primrose Path, by Nolan Bonvouloir
Average member rating: (30 ratings)
You've been having a series of nightmares about Leo, standing at the edge of a cliff. No matter what you do, a bell rings and Leo disappears over the edge . . .

Suggest a game

Polls

The following polls include votes for A Stop For The Night:

Adjustable Default Games by Emily Short
Works in which some aspect of the game's default behavior can be customized (e.g. by changing the person of the narration), especially if the game allows players to play with alternatives to standard IF conventions.

Games with non-standard directions by Andrew Schultz
I'm wondering about games (primarily parser) with weird directions beyond NW/SW/SE/NE, up, down or inside/outside. I like the example in the Inform docs (Charles S. Roberts) about hexagonal directions but have no clue how to go about...

Links




This is version 1 of this page, last edited on 16 October 2007 at 1:49am. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item