The People's Glorious Revolutionary Text Adventure Game

by Taylor Vaughan

Humor
2010

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Reviews and Ratings

5 star:
(9)
4 star:
(23)
3 star:
(19)
2 star:
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Number of Ratings: 52
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- TheBoxThinker, January 22, 2022

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
Economic system satire, October 28, 2021

The goal is to turn the capitalist town (Goldwater avenue etc) into a communist paradise by performing the tasks on your to-do list. The puzzles are pretty standard text adventure style and can be annoying, but the solutions are pretty funny. One of my favorite games. Note: you don't need to be a communist to enjoy this game.


- Edo, July 12, 2021

- Zape, March 30, 2021

- Durafen, June 20, 2020

- Guenni (At home), June 7, 2019

- Stian, February 14, 2019

- AKheon (Finland), September 30, 2018

- getlostdont, January 18, 2018

- beriaearwen, October 11, 2017

- Laney Berry, May 18, 2017

- ifMUD_Olly (Montana, USA), April 21, 2017

- finnn62, December 14, 2016

- E. W. B., March 19, 2016

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
A short-to-mid length silly communism game, February 3, 2016

In this game, you are Commissar of the communist party in a capitalist town. You are given a series of tasks to accomplish to promote the cause of the communist party.

The game has several clever puzzles, and the puzzles have multiple solutions, which is fun. However, some of the puzzles seemed unintuitive.

The game is written from the viewpoint of a strongly anti-capitalist communist man, and the reactions to things like Starbucks is pretty amusing.

I didn't find this game as funny as some of the other reviewers did, although the confusion between Karl Marx and Groucho Marx was fun, as was the endgame.

Overall, I recommend that you try the first part; it's a very good representative of the rest of the game, and that way you'll know if you like it.


- verityvirtue (London), December 12, 2015

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful:
Not revolutionary game design, but so what?, March 16, 2015
by Andrew Schultz (Chicago)

PGRTAG was one of the first games I played when I came back to text adventures and judged for IFComp 2010. It doesn't seem to break any theoretical ground or have grand arguments. It would be easy to disqualify as dashed off, and I suspected once I saw ten or so games like this, I wouldn't be so high on it.

But after testing and playing a lot of games, I still haven't found many that reached this level. In so many humor games, I see what they're trying to do, and I say good job, but this one's jokes are immersive. I was worried from the title that the game might be overdone, but it feels balanced right.

Though originally I figured, sure, I enjoyed it, but it's not going to last. I figured once I learned more and saw more, I'd be glad I played it and all, but I really need to learn from more sophisticated efforts.

It's several years later and I'm still coming back to it, though, while games that discuss structure are more over my head, or I don't feel as invited to learn from them, or I figured I got their lesson and I'd like to move on. This game does pretty much everything it wants to, right. It's a spontaneous affair, and it has those touches I wish I'd seen. The over the top narrative voice makes fun of, say, coffee shops and people who complain about them too much. The puzzle where Comrade Rosalia wants to share Communist Manifestos with the students but needs one for everyone is funny and sad bad-logic.

The end result for me is a very spontaneous game. You're invited to try silly stuff, and in fact the two paths through the game are very funny, and the alternate solutions let you use items differently. There's a best ending ((Spoiler - click to show)don't use the pawn shop) and a not-best, and they both make sense.

I think the community needs games like this, to keep us all grounded, or to remember that you don't have to be academic to sort old ideas into new stuff, or even to enter into Interesting Arguments (all arguments between NPCs in the game are suitably ludicrous.) I mean, when I read about reworkings of an old myth or whatever, I can't really mark that as superior to something like this, which pastes silly tropes and leaves you feeling, yes, it's okay to write silly stuff and want to.

On the downside, there's some guess the verb ((Spoiler - click to show)POINT device at X) and some annoying disambiguation among devices, where you have three "(long name)" device to choose from. But the game's short enough, it's not a huge deal.

Sadly, I haven't seen the author again. I hope they come back. Even a game half as good would be very welcome. When someone writes a game like this, it's easy to feel they can just dash off another. But it's not so easy to find that big-idea sweet spot and execute it. Still, as a blueprint for writing something very funny, it's hard to beat PGRTAG.


- DJ (Olalla, Washington), May 9, 2013

- Zepton (Canada), April 6, 2013

- Tiberoo, March 26, 2013

- pcbrannon, February 24, 2013

- Audiart (Davis, CA), January 20, 2013

- Ben Treat (Maine, USA), July 8, 2012

- stadtgorilla (Munich, Germany), April 17, 2012

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful:
Utterly Charming, March 27, 2012
by Jim Kaplan (Jim Kaplan has a room called the location. The location of Jim Kaplan is variable.)
Related reviews: taylor vaughan, humor

Play it if: you're in the mood for some distraction and a bit of light humor that plays off some lovely caricatures of communism and capitalism.

Don't play it if: you're in the mood for intellectual challenge or satire that's actually razor-sharp instead of soft, warm, and fluffy.

The People's Glorious Revolutionary Text Adventure Game can only be encapsulated in the word "charming". The whole game is filled with a kind of whimsy you can find in the old Monkey Island puzzle-solving games: some light satire, a bit of caricature, and a young, plucky would-be hero.

There are really three levels to the humor here. The first is the caricatured viewpoint of the main character (appropriately named Karl). It's great fun to read the verbose and melodramatic descriptions given to vile dens of capitalism (e.g. a coffee joint) and glorious artifacts of the Revolution (e.g. your hat). The second is the ridiculously simplistic tools and methods you're expected to use to overcome capitalism - among them the Ventriloquator, a device which forces its target to spout Marxist slogans. The third level is the fact that the world actually bears out the logic of these methods. The capitalist world is just as surreal as Karl's mind, from the government bureaucrat's behavior to the bizarrely simple steps which will supposedly collapse the government and implode the economy to achieve Revolution.

The only real complaint I have about the game is its lack of ambition. For all its charm, the game feels a bit too short, and one gets the feeling that The People's Glorious Revolutionary Text Adventure Game could have taken its cues from the previously-mentioned LucasArts puzzle-solving games to expand the setting and the story a little.

Still, The People's Glorious Revolutionary Text Adventure Game (boy, am I getting tired of typing that out) is a solid game with no discernible gameplay hitches. This would make a good easy distraction and an excellent beginner's introduction to interactive fiction.

P.S. Oh, and the soundtrack on the author's website is brill. Good touch, Taylor!



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