Reviews by Kake

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Across The Stars: The Ralckor Incident, by Dark Star and Peter Mattsson

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful:
A game that really rubbed me up the wrong way, November 23, 2007
by Kake (London, England)
Related reviews: Peter Mattsson, Dark Star, ***, IF Competition 2007

I gave this game three stars after I first played it, intending to come back to it after reading a few reviews and giving it a few more plays, to see if I thought it really deserved four or whether I should stick with three. Unfortunately, additional attempts at play made me so frustrated that I almost ended up dropping my rating down to two. Even though I knew exactly what I needed to do to complete the first part, I ran out of time and died four times trying to get the timing to work; doubly frustrating as I'd managed it straight away the first time around, when I'd spent a lot more time wandering around the ship then. Resorting to the walkthrough, I found that the problem was caused by my having a mistaken mental picture of certain items.

Throughout the game, I didn't think the puzzles were particularly well-signalled; what I mean by that is that while they weren't difficult in the sense of needing a great amount of intellect, they were difficult in the sense of the circumstances around them not being very clearly explained. I also felt that the huge info-dump of made-up creation myth in the second part of the game was very off-putting.

Basically, I'm still annoyed with this game, and I'd be unlikely to recommend it to anyone else, particularly someone new to IF. I did like the fact that there were multiple solutions to some of the puzzles though.


Rameses, by Stephen Bond

7 of 11 people found the following review helpful:
Well-executed, just not my thing, November 16, 2007
by Kake (London, England)
Related reviews: Stephen Bond, ***

This isn't really a game, and as the author says in the ABOUT, it isn't really a story either: "All I can call it is a Thing." There is very little interactivity; your agency basically consists of what order to look at things in, and your conversational choices make pretty much no difference to the story. There are reasons for this, particularly as regards the conversations, but I did find it a bit frustrating sometimes, as if I was being made to type meaningless strings of characters before being rewarded with the next section of story.

The writing and characterisation are both very good, and Rameses does seem to be very well-regarded, but it just didn't do it for me.


Muse: An Autumn Romance, by Christopher Huang

2 of 7 people found the following review helpful:
Still stuck on this one. I think., November 10, 2007
by Kake (London, England)
Related reviews: Christopher Huang, ***, didn't finish

I've had a few goes at this game now, and although I've managed to reach a couple of unsatisfactory endings, I've not yet been able to complete the storyline I'm aiming at. It's not as though I'm obviously in a failure situation, either; I'm just stuck at a point where nothing I do seems to progress the story. So I can't really write a proper review. Also, I occasionally found myself guessing at the correct syntax, something that shouldn't really be necessary in a well-tested game.

I do want to say that I like the way you can ask characters about other characters (and indeed themselves), and I like the way the story's told in the past tense.


The Crescent City at the Edge of Disaster, by Emily Short

0 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
Reasonably amusing speed IF, November 9, 2007
by Kake (London, England)
Related reviews: Emily Short, ***, speed IF

Very short game well, it is a Speed IF entry, after all. Reasonably amusing, no glitches that I noticed, only one typo. Possibly more fun if you're familiar with New Orleans.

I've not played much Speed IF, so take my rating with a pinch of salt.


Galatea, by Emily Short

4 of 11 people found the following review helpful:
Interesting, but I couldn't get into it, November 7, 2007
by Kake (London, England)
Related reviews: Emily Short, ***

Although I really like the premise of this, and I had a fair bit of sympathy/empathy for Galatea-the-character, I don't feel I really enjoyed the game, despite around twenty replays. It may be my playing style, but I found it very easy to fall into repetitive dead-ends, and I never managed to find an ending that I thought was really satisfying.

I very much don't want this review to put anyone else off playing Galatea, though; the time spent on playing is a worthwhile gamble.



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