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Napier's Cache

by Vivienne Dunstan profile

Historical
2020

Web Site

(based on 11 ratings)
5 reviews

About the Story

Scotland, 1594: You're used to strange requests in your role as servant to John Napier. He's not just famous as a mathematician, but is also known for his occult skills and knowledge, still valued in these dangerous times. But the latest quest may be the toughest one yet, as you prepare to help him hunt for lost treasure in remote Fast Castle, home of the dangerous Logan of Restalrig. Will you find it? Or will you discover something else instead?


Game Details

Language: English (en)
First Publication Date: April 2, 2020
Current Version: 1
License: Freeware
Development System: Inform 7
Forgiveness Rating: Merciful
IFID: 1841D28A-AEB3-4F83-BCE4-5BA9D129B791
TUID: 4np21bl7mr02wsk2

Awards

Entrant, Main Festival - Spring Thing 2020

Editorial Reviews

Narrativium
Spring Thing 2020 Review: Napier's Cache by Vivienne Dunstan
There's a real sense of history pouring out of this game, despite the magical/mystical trappings. Recommended.
See the full review

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Member Reviews

5 star:
(1)
4 star:
(6)
3 star:
(4)
2 star:
(0)
1 star:
(0)
Average Rating:
Number of Reviews: 5
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Most Helpful Member Reviews


7 of 7 people found the following review helpful:
The mathematician's assistant's tale, July 30, 2020
by Wade Clarke (Sydney, Australia)
Related reviews: spring thing 2020, inform

I didn't know who John Napier was before I played this game, and didn't research him until after. He was a noted sixteenth century mathematician with religious and occult interests. The occult angle is the launching point for this parser-based adventure in which the player takes on the role of Napier's assistant in a treasure hunt of sorts.

Napier's Cache is effective and uncomplicated. Simple puzzles are a vehicle for the evocation of servant-filled historical atmospheres, with locations such as the eccentric mathematician's quarters and a windswept Scottish castle. The PC, also a servant of sorts, is observant and resourceful, and views his master through a lens of dependable but arms-length loyalty. NPCs range from dim guards to blustery lords, and the social stratosphere is conveyed by the way the high-ranking characters deliver orders and exposition while 'the help' actually interact with or help the PC. The implementation of the characters is solid enough for each one's purpose.

The game potentially feels a bit short, but this is a sign that what's here is engaging. It delivers a bit of a lot of different effects – multiple locations, exploration, treasure-hunting, easy puzzling, human and animal NPCs – to create a satisfying experience.


5 of 5 people found the following review helpful:
An unusual historical parser game, April 11, 2020
by MathBrush
Related reviews: about 1 hour

I beta tested this game.

Napier's Cache is in an unusual niche of historical fiction, and is based on a family story of the author.

It is fairly linear in story with nonlinear interactions in each 'phase'. You first have a small treasure hunt, followed by a dinner scene, then another treasure hunt and a simple maze.

In design it reminds me quite a bit of Christminster, an early (pre-IFComp) inform game that was well-regarded at the time, that also had you doing things like eating at a dinner with scholars and discovering the history of old alchemists.

Overall, the quality is well-done, and most reasonable interactions are coded for. I enjoyed each iteration of this better than the previous, and I believe this is something to be proud of.


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful:
Historical scenes from a treasure hunt., September 17, 2020
by Rovarsson (Belgium)
Related reviews: History

Well, this was a very short but very welcome historical experience.

Each scene puts you in a different situation as the servant of mathematician/alchemist Napier. You are his hands and eyes in this easy treasure quest.

The scenes are very well written, letting you feel the atmosphere of the castle, the cave,... The NPCs have distinct characters, adding to the immersion in the story.

All in all, more a series of historical impressions than a full-fledged game, but very enjoyable.

Great side-effect of this game: it sent me on my own treasure hunt to find out more about this John Napier, an intruiging personality in the history of mathematics.


See All 5 Member Reviews

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Recommended Lists

Napier's Cache appears in the following Recommended Lists:

Great games in a mostly realistic setting by MathBrush
These are games that for the most part don't contain magical elements or futuristic technology. This includes games where there might be magic or futuristic technology, but you don't know until the end. So several of these games do...

Games I finished without hints. by Rovarsson
It's better for the feeling of immersion when you're not reading a walkthrough while playing. These games are definitely solvable without hints. Some very friendly puzzlewise, some a tad harder.

My new walkthroughs for August 2020 by David Welbourn
During the evening of Thursday August 27, 2020, I published new walkthroughs for the games and stories listed below! Some of these were paid for by my wonderful patrons at Patreon. Please consider supporting me to make even more new...

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Polls

The following polls include votes for Napier's Cache:

Games for Beginners by WriterBob
I'm looking for games that are suited for adults who are new to IF. My purpose is to share these games with friends and let them get experience IF without being frustrated by mazes or guess-the-verb issues. Please avoid children's games....

Historical adventures. by Rovarsson
I love historical novels, no matter what time period they're set in. They do have to be accurate though. Can you suggest IF-games that are also like that? (In short: no magic.)




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