I was able to complete two read-throughs of 'Japanese Rice' in about 35 tedious minutes that consisted entirely of my engagement with pointless clicks through a mostly linear plot. The linearity of the narrative could be forgiven, but the actual text was pedestrian, arrhythmic, tonally inconsistent, and suffered from a severe lack of direction. I am no stranger to conceptual or Avante-Garde interactive storytelling, but this particular piece missed the mark on every level for me. The author's point of view and the protagonist's point of view were lost in a blur of meaningless hyperlinks and nonsensical word choices. This is the first time the word 'pedantic' has come to mind as an apt descriptor of interactive fiction.
The banal language favoured by the author appears only 30 seconds in, and continues in this manner throughout the entire text. (Spoiler - click to show)
‘The sky when I woke up this morning was like a used coffee filter hanging over us
a used coffee filter dripping dirty dregs on the back gardens of the world.'
To me, 'Japanese Rice' is the perfect example of a work that has been authored using Twine for absolutely no reason, and would make just as much sense as a solid block of text. The structure of the text and the placement of the links made no sense and often seemed to be a shallow attempt at free verse poetry imbued with the novelty of hypertext. That being said, I don't think this piece would have any merit as a work of prose fiction either.