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A short interactive shore leave, July 14, 2016
At Anchor is micro fiction. No more than a few hundred words. But it expands beyond those words, beyond the game. Into Epictetusís Enchiridion and Caelyn Sandelís Tiny Beach. You have to reach outside to understand whatís anchored to the text.
The gameís soundscape and seascape might seem to offer an escape. Only briefly. You are combing a beach but you will return to your ship one way or another. Still, you have a momentís meditation. With just three actions, the game opens diverse options: listen for the captainís call, never listen and search the sand instead, listen but then ignore the call, listen and then obey.
These seem small choices. They are as large as you want them to be. Their largeness lies between their lines. When, at one end, certain sentences repeat with more words missing each time, the blank space following the final line may say as much as the now-missing language.
Interactive fiction this economic cannot simply be swallowed. It will go down too fast. You have to wander with it, let your thoughts circle, allow the game to pull them back to its center. Then maybe let them leave the game entirely.