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Sky Pirates of Actorius

by Kyle Marquis

Science Fiction

Web Site

(based on 1 rating)
1 review

About the Story

Infiltrate a pirate airship and foil the captain’s plans! Can you survive the greedy crew and ruthless officers and disrupt their schemes in time? You’ll hunt merchant vessels, and seek lost treasure while undercover as a sky pirate!

Escape to the skies above the world of Empyrean and command a brutal crew of pirates in search of plunder, glory, and high-tech booty!
Sky Pirates of Actorius is a 37,000-word interactive adventure story by Kyle Marquis, where your choices control the story. It's entirely text-based—without graphics or sound effects—and fueled by the vast, unstoppable power of your imagination.

No one on land, sea, or air can stop Captain Krayl as he plunders the great city of Actorius—no one except you. Trained by the Actorian Air Guard, with a clockwork animal companion that not even your commanding officer knows about, you must infiltrate the crew of the pirate airship Falling Angel. Your orders: learn Captain Krayl’s true plans and stop him at any cost.

But far from your commanding officer and surrounded by treasure and opportunity, you will have to decide where your true loyalties lie. If you can deflect Captain Krayl’s suspicions, please your handlers back home, and keep the crew from turning against you, glory awaits you: promotion back in Actorius, fame and riches as a sky pirate, or even the Falling Angel itself. But step carefully: everyone wants something, and everyone here will kill to get it.

• Play as male, female, or nonbinary.
• Fly aeros in deadly dogfights against merchant vessels and enemy pirates.
• Stay loyal to the Actorian Air Guard or betray them for glory, treasure, or friendship.
• Outwit spies and rival agents in shady ports of call.
• Command your clockwork animal companion to help you fight, fly, and spy.
• Use cunning and misdirection to balance the conflicting demands of captain, crew, and your secret mission.
• Hunt for buried treasure in the metal jungles of the Deep Tech.

Game Details


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Number of Reviews: 1
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
A miniature, procedural pirate infiltration game, March 25, 2021
by MathBrush
Related reviews: 15-30 minutes

This is the only game out of Choice of Games 123 existing titles I've played that I'm giving 3 stars to. Most titles are the result of years of work and careful oversight by a large crew of editors, copyeditors, testers, etc. that result in a game that is at minimum polished, replayable, descriptive, and having some kind of emotional impact or good interactivity, which are the criteria I judge games by.

This game is the smallest game made since Choice of the Dragon, is experimental, and is buggy. The size is due to it being one of the free (with ads) mini-size games available to anyone playing on the omnibus apps. Unlike the other mini games (Zip! Speedster and HMS Foraker), this one seems like it was written to be me small, with a new kind of gameplay not seen before in Choice of Games.

As an experiment, I'm not sure the game works. It has some randomization (so, for instance, going to the stats screen and back can change what day you're on). Each day is a journal entry, presenting a choice with yes/no options. These are either 'what faction do you favor' out of 3 possible factions, or 'do you try this beneficial thing that checks which of your stats are good' or a combination of the two. In this way, it kind of reminds me of Amazing Quest, a controversial tiny game entered in the 2020 IFComp.

If any of the three factions hates you, you die. The game is supposed to let you restart that day, but a game-breaking bug instead sends you back to the beginning of the game, leaving some of your stats intact which causes a couple more errors.

The randomization and binary choices make the game pretty difficult, with the bug rendering the game permanently in 'hard mode'. I did get to an ending.

I enjoyed the character Lookout and the two different machine animals I had on different runs (a copper snake and silver wolf). I love all the rest of Marquis's games, so I enjoyed getting more lore here about Empyrean, and the captain's mysterious locked room reminded me of Bluebeard, one of my favorite characters (I've sometimes considered Duke Bluebeard's Castle my favorite opera).

So, while this has many redeeming features, I can't give this 4 stars due to the fairly severe, easily reproducible bugs and with my dissatisfaction with the interactivity. But I think Marquis can handle it, as he's an amazing writer with some of the best games out there (like the Vampire Masquerade game).

I'm also looking forward to his next Pon Para game!

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This is version 1 of this page, edited by MathBrush on 25 March 2021 at 3:06am. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item - Delete This Page