Ratings and Reviews by WynterView this member's profile
View this member's reviews by tag: Multimedia 1-10 of 16 | Next | Show All
I came to this game with high expectations, having previously played Tethered by the same author. The Impossible Bottle is diametrically different in atmosphere and setting - the only thing they have in common is that, in both games, objects aren't what they seem to be at first glance - but this is another excellent game by Linus Åkesson.
This game is based on one single, very strong and very thoughtfully worked-out idea: (Spoiler - click to show)a dollhouse which allows you to change the size and nature of items inside the actual house, and vice versa. This reminded me somewhat of a similar mechanic in (Spoiler - click to show)Emily Short's Metamorphoses, except in that game the solutions felt a bit more arbitrary and random, perhaps due to the more mystical atmosphere, whereas in The Impossible Bottle they were more logical and easier to figure out.
After having struggled through a couple of fiendish (but deeply, deeply enjoyable) games by Graham Nelson (both of which, if I'm not mistaken, are referenced in this game: try chatting to Nolan at different points in your progress), I appreciated the 'merciful' rating of this one, not to mention the hint system, which gave out tips without giving too much too quickly.
The child-centred view of the world ("this room is the best, because it's yours") was sweet and funny, and once I had figured out how to make the game 'work' it was great fun to (Spoiler - click to show)move different objects and change them from one thing to another. And there is a cuddly capybara in it.
What a strange and beautiful piece of interactive fiction!
Summit is based on a startling idea: that human beings must periodically expel living fish from their fishstomachs, and then swallow them, ultimately choosing a more gradual death over a prompt one. Somehow Phantom Williams manages to make this idea sound completely convincing within a few minutes.
The story is based on the desire for the far-off summit of the mountain, and the long journey that must be taken in order to reach it. I would have liked more time to have been spent expressing why the character desires to reach the mountain.
Your journey takes you through a number of different places, in each of which the people find a different way to deal with issues of death, fish, and ecstasy. Having played it through twice, I think the path taken by the character is roughly the same in different playings, but it's possible to skip parts and include or exclude other characters, and to make decisions about how to spend your time in each place, and how much time.
The style of frequent link-clicking, based on symbols which may or may not have significance, slows the story down and gives it an almost meditative feel. The descriptions of the places you visit are mysterious and beautiful, creating an excellent sense of atmosphere.
One question: it promises music, yet I couldn't see any way of turning it on (yes, I had sound switched on). Given the atmospheric nature of the piece, I would have loved to have heard that.
In this Twine short story, a great sense of atmosphere and suspense is created, not just by the use of images and sound, excellent as those are, but by thoughtful use of links: links that change text when you click on them, links that trigger a time delay, and changes of layout. I would have liked the plot to have developed more - it felt like reading the first half of a story.
Nevertheless, this is a good example of what I would consider multimedia fiction, where the interactivity provided by Twine is used not to give the reader a choice of narratives, but to provide atmosphere and to move the story onwards.
An interactive novella about coming out as transgender in early adulthood.
This is a Twine production that really feels like reading a story. Although each chapter ultimately leads you through a pre-determined plotline, your ability to make choices gives an added layer of agency to the narrative. The young protagonist deals with some difficult encounters, but there is a strong note of hope.
The addition of music, colour and background graphics makes this an extremely polished production indeed. It made me realise just what a Twine story can be.
A text adventure with a twist: all of the objects can be altered, both in size and in substance (e.g. changed from metal into wood). So not only do you have to think, 'What could I do with this object?', but also, 'What could this object become?'
This takes place in a fascinating and mysterious setting, a medieval/early modern world of alchemy and of the four humours. You are in a house filled with strange and wonderful objects and paintings, which enhance the gameplay considerably. I would have liked to have known more about the building you are in, and how it came to be as it is, and more backstory about the playing character and the Master more generally. In Emily Short's Bronze, for comparison, the castle and the objects within it are more closely linked to the story.
It is a short game, and according to the 'help' function, not a difficult one; I actually found it harder than I expected, perhaps because the setting is so mysterious that the actions you have to perform are not always self-explanatory, and also there is the extra challenge provided by the sheer number of permutations of the transformations of each object.
I admired this game mostly for the clever idea of metamorphosing objects and for the gorgeous descriptions and setting that I have come to expect from an Emily Short game.
I had played and enjoyed text adventure games before *Bronze*, but this was the first that I truly loved.
Based on the fairytale of Beauty and the Beast (not one I am very familiar with), this game is long enough to keep you busy for a while, with puzzles which are neither too simple nor infuriatingly difficult. But its greatest strengths are the atmosphere that it evokes, through the description of the castle and the objects in it - rich and Gothic, sometimes macabre - and the incredible storytelling: not just in the present day, but a whole history which leaves its traces in the castle, and which can be pieced together through paintings, objects, rooms and books. *Bronze* reminded me somewhat of Angela Carter's book *The Bloody Chamber*, a collection of modern retellings of fairytales with a dark but beautifully-described atmosphere.
An illuminating post on Short's blog explained how the story developed, leading to its various endings (CONTAINS SPOILERS: https://emshort.blog/2006/12/31/the-making-of-bronze/) - I never succeeded in finding one of these.
The 'go to' function is very much appreciated, and there is a tutorial mode for new players of IF. But the atmosphere and storytelling should appeal to players at all levels.
1-10 of 16 | Next | Show All