Arcadia Power

Author Topic: Mixed bag  (Read 29 times)

Flamekebab

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Mixed bag
« on: February 07, 2019, 03:08:26 pm »
I can't say I'm a fan of the genre and that rather colours my experiences (the genre being horror of some variety, not as in text adventures). I mostly played the game to see where the research was going. It was okay.

The passages were reasonably well written. I wasn't sure if some things were red herrings or not. I prefer the shandification school of game design where things aren't pared to the bone but in a small game it's hard to know if a certain choices are there to add colour to the narrative or as vestigial elements remaining from unimplemented mechanics (the eyeball for example). Or perhaps they affect things in a nebulous way that I'd have to dig into the game's code to discover.

The few parts I could have done with mapping had timers and so mapping wasn't an option (the game's garden area - assuming it uses a map and the directional choices matter). The rest of the layout is simple in relation to the available directional choices (if I was having to navigate with cardinal directions to reach doors that could well change). I do not like timers in games.

Sound gets a mention but either Chrome isn't interested in dealing with the way you implemented sound or it's not setup correctly (the game, not my browser - the sound used in my own SugarCube Twine game works in Chrome). Perhaps it would have affected me for better or worse if it worked?

Lastly the stock creepy tropes felt rather forced but perhaps that's me being a grumpy old cynic. Creepy children, a bit of body horror, fear of the unknown, etc.. After finding the initial ending which taught me the type of game I was playing it became difficult to remain invested. "Ah, the game's trying to kill me. Exploration will probably be punished" was essentially my internal response.

It did make me wonder whether I could write horror of some kind though. I've never tried and have no idea whether it's difficult or not. I suspect it's a very fine balance to walk. Speaking of which the somber tone throughout the game primed me for bad things, for want of a better term. It wasn't shocking to find horror elements because the setting effectively telegraphed that that's what I would encounter in any given location.

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