Yet again, this author astounds me with a total reimagining of the IF navigation model. Yet again, it puts the typical model to shame.
I love how this isn't just gimmick (though that would have been enough) - the gameplay ties into the story and setting absolutely perfectly. The visuals evoked are fantastic, and the entire thing is a shining homage to some of the most iconically bizarre products of the masquerade era. If only it were illustrated accordingly!
This game definitely isn't for everybody. The overall feeling of melancholy and wasted potential never lifts. There is no choice that will not make you feel trapped and resentful. The disorienting lack of clear direction was likely intentional, but holy cow did I ever get tired of playing "guess the direction!" while the NPC I was trying to talk to ran to another room.
In the end, I was too overwhelmed by frustration with the ineffectual main character's lack of meaningful decision-making (stay in hospital slightly longer? agree with someone's else's decision? file invoices??) to do anything more than sleep the last few days. For crying out loud, MC, this is why we have feminism! Dump the husband! Move out on your own! Ride a motorcycle! For once in your pathetic life, TAKE A REAL RISK!