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About the Story
Advance in Society and bargain with creatures in the Wood in a Regency fantasy of manners, daring, and magic. Will you join your daemon overlords in destroying your hometown or will you defy them?
50 Years of Text Games, by Aaron A. Reed
Choice of Games wanted each playthrough to tell a satisfying and finite story with a beginning, middle, and end. The core design decision for a ChoiceScript game, then, would be devising the set of stats—the “memory” of each particular story—that best let players explore how their character fit into its overall dramatic arc. [...]
Most of the stats tracked by Weyrwood relate to your character’s social reputation: are you respectable or scandalous, principled or manipulative, influential or withdrawn? This was appropriate for a game described as “a Regency fantasy of manners, daring, and magic.” The story centers around a town called Prosper, part of a fantastical world where humans and magical creatures live alongside each other—not always easily. Built at the edge of the Wood and the dangerous Wilds, the town receives magical protection through an ancient three-party contract signed by its human founders, the capricious Weyrs of the forest, and the scheming daemons of the Wild.
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This is an engaging and well-written game where you play a somewhat-wealthy member of the gentry returning to your childhood estate upon the death of your guardian.
Your city has bargained with daemons and weyrds (treefolk) to survive. Everyone lives on the edge with the daemons. Do well, be scandalous, attract attention, and you'll get more magic currency. Do poorly and lose it all, and the daemons come to suck out your soul and make you their slave.
There is a lot of variety in terms of romantic partners and factions to side with. I intend on replaying as I saw tons of material about the daemons but almost nothing about the weyrds (my choice).
I would heartily recommend this game, but I really didn't like the narrative direction regarding one of the possible romances.
Your childhood friend is recently married, but they hit on you, and the game encourages you to have at least an implied affair with them to generate more scandal. If you press, she hints that her partner is okay with it. Later, even when I was engaged to someone else, it pushed for us to be together, saying that your partner would understand.
I get that they're going for polyamory representation. I'm not completely opposed to a certain form of polyamory: my ancestors in the 1800s were polygamous, and I think that was fine. But this is offputting, even with 'modern' polyamory, which is completely about trust. I met the husband later, and he seemed 'chill', but she could have plied him with a fake story about you; and later, you are encouraged to be with her without your spouse knowing (you have a 'feeling' they'll be okay with it). If you look up anything about polyamory, it only works with everyone's explicit consent. What's in the game is just cheating, and it's pushed on you multiple times.
Honestly, I find that pretty gross, and for that reason I'm not recommending this game in general. The rest of it is pretty great.
Edit: Narratively, I have no problem with games allowing you to bad things, as it makes your choices more real. I don't like it telling you in your own voice that this is okay and that you kind of want to do it.
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