Opening Night

by David Batterham

2008

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Number of Reviews: 5
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A rose for a star., June 27, 2022
by Rovarsson (Belgium)

A bouncer looks down his nose at you. "So sorry to inform you, sir, but we do have a dress code here. If you would be so kind to adhere to it or shove off. Please."

Opening Night starts out with a straightforward puzzle: find a way past the bouncer and into the theatre. We meet our player character, who seems to be a somewhat obsessed fan of the lead singer/actress in the play this evening. His insistence upon getting in goes two ways: it garners sympathetic feelings for his obvious and honest admiration for the show's leading lady, but it also verges on the edge of creepiness.

In later chapters however, the need to get a personal meeting with the actress falls away as the prime motivation of the game as it transforms into another story altogether.

There are puzzles, but they serve mostly as a means to get the player more deeply involved with the story.Away to elicit a deeper emotional response as the game goes through its metamorphosis.

In the end, Opening Night is a short and compressed tale centered around the eponymous pivotal night in the protagonist's life. While the game shows us only scenes from the theatre and its immediate surroundings and never elaborates on the player character's personal life, Opening Night still manages to somehow imply the protagonist's entire life story. We are given just enough hints to let the imagination take over and fill in the blank years.

Very strong storytelling.