Pinched

by Anonymous

Science Fiction
2013

Go to the game's main page

Member Reviews

Number of Reviews: 4
Write a review


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful:
Boy, it sure would be nice if we had some grenades, don't you think?, February 2, 2013
by Mr. Patient (Saint Paul, Minn.)

In Pinched, the PC is the hilariously crude Jayne Cobb, the accidental hero played by Adam Baldwin in Firefly. Jayne usually provides the muscle of the Serenity crew, but in this adventure, he does everything but that. It's an amusing setup, although it doesn't quite reach its potential.

The key thing in fanfic like this is to get the voices and behaviors of the characters right. Here, I think the author mostly does a fine job. Mal's voice in particular is well-realized, and almost all of the default responses have been replaced by funny things that I can imagine coming out of Jayne's mouth. Some of these are downright terrific (like the response[s] to SING). And naturally, there's lots of Whedony language and callbacks to the show. While not quite bug-free -- there are some minor run-time errors when eating unexpected things -- the game seems solid, and was allegedly tested, although the testers are also anonymous.

I wish it had a more open design, though. The game is broken into a series of one- or two-room scenes, where you either bide time during expository dialogue, perhaps interjecting something with JOKE or ASK QUESTION, or you solve (or brute-force) a simple puzzle. It's easy to code, I'm sure, but it's a real missed opportunity. The joy of playing a Firefly game (and writing one, I would think), would be in poking around Serenity and interacting with the crew: playing with the dinosaurs on Wash's console, or lifting weights with Book in the cargo bay. We don't get to do these things, or admire Jayne's prodigious gun collection, even though we're in his bunk. Firefly has a large cast, so I understand the challenges of implementing all of them as fully-realized NPCs with detailed conversation trees, but I was hoping for more.

The puzzles, while funny in the abstract, don't really deliver the daring heist promised in the blurb. A little bit of "Jayne is uncomfortable in polite society" goes a long way. Some more tension or derring-do would have been welcome.


Comments on this review

Previous | << 1 >> | Next

Andrew Schultz, February 4, 2013 - Reply
Hm, it looks like this is the sort of game it's worth sending a transcript to the author for, if he leaves an email address.

I actually only just watched Firefly, so this was a game I meant to play, and it seems worth it, and my impression (not having played the game yet) is that this is a good episode to choose.

I think when an author provides detailed, funny responses to fixed verbs and maybe misses out on the runtime errors, that's a sign of inexperience, but willingness to try new stuff and look into things (because it's nontrivial to look through all the actions,) or maybe not knowing what big things other people look for, yet.

At any rate, for me, it's good to know about annoyances in advance, so I can filter them out and enjoy them.
Mr. Patient, February 4, 2013 - Reply
There's no email address or contact info that I can find. The runtime errors are really very minor, though. The only ones I saw were in response to things like EAT PANTS. If you can refrain from doing that, you should be OK.
Previous | << 1 >> | Next