Reviews by Sam Kabo Ashwell
puzzlesView this member's profile
View this member's reviews by tag: abuse adverbs aesthetics afghanistan aif alice anatomy ancient rome animal protagonist animals anime april fool's art atrocity baseball based on songs bdsm boardgame body parts bondage bureaucracy casual games character portrait character stats childhood children's Christian christianity classics collaborative combat comedy coming of age compulsion conspiracy constrained writing conversation cooking cryptology cyclic cyoa darkness dating sim detective developing world dinosaur discordian dracula dream easy games easy puzzles ectocomp education educational emotion environment epilogue eris ethics experimental fairytale family fan fiction fanfiction fantasy feminism fictionalised flashback flight folktale food frame-story freud frustration gender genre gimmick gods graphics guilt Harry Potter heroic fantasy historical historical fiction history hoax holocaust homeschool horror how not to do it if comp 2010 incomplete institutions intertextuality jesus kink large large map leonora carrington lesbian linear love magic magic system make-believe marriage medicine metaphor minicomp minigame miracles movement MUD multimedia multiple narrators multiple protagonists mystery myth narrative narrative structure narrow verb set noir non-genre nostalgia nouns NPCs old-school oldschool one-trick pony oulipo out-of-comp palindrome paranormal persuasive games philosophy platformer poetry polemic political politics pornographic pornography postmodernism psychology PTSD puzzles quest random religion religious remix rhetoric rhyme roborally romance rpg satire science fantasy science fiction setting sex SF simile simulation simulationist smell smut speedIF spelling sports spring thing Spring Thing 2011 spy steampunk stiffy makane superhero surreal surrealism survival horror teenage textuality theatre theology theory therapy They Might Be Giants time tone tragedy train transposition treasure hunt trial and error trophy case urban legend vampire varytale Victorian videogame adaptation Vorple wacky war wedding weird wordplay words young adult Zorkian
...or see all reviews by this member1-1 of 1
Flight of the Hummingbird is a sort of attempt to blend platformer-style puzzles in an IF format. All of its puzzles are to do with difficult or unusual ways of getting around. Most involve alternative ways of handling space than the standard IF rooms-and-compass method. While some of these experiments seem potentially interesting, none are developed much beyond the point at which the player can grasp their use.
The fictional content is pretty standard fare: you play a third-string superhero with a kind of feeble theme and an unimpressive power (you can fly, but have to chug sugary sports drinks every few turns). You're tasked with dealing with a third-string supervillain with a campy villainous plan of some kind that requires a space rocket; everybody expects you to screw up. This is a pretty well-established comedy premise, so it needs to be really funny to work: ideally, it would have played on the careenings of the navigation puzzles to produce something wildly slapstick. Flight's writing, however, is more workmanlike than anything, and the comedy falls flat. What remains is a My Pathetic Life narrative, which turns out to be no more appealing with superheroes than in My Apartment.
So the ultimate effect of Flight is of something that was designed as a succession of themed puzzles with a narrative skin, rather than something that marries puzzle and narrative together. It may appeal as a quick puzzlebox, if that's your bag: it's not really mine.
1-1 of 1