The Cavity of Time

by Sam Kabo Ashwell profile

Pornographic Picaresque

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
Undum is so gorgeous., August 3, 2013
by Hanon Ondricek (United States)

I wish I knew how to program in Undum, because the default format is so beautiful to read, and is richly textured like a fine parchment map in a leather library of some sea-captain's abandoned manor.

Sam Kabo Ashwell adds to the legacy of Stiffy Makane in the CYOA format that he (I can only assume from his exhaustive analysis of classic works) is very fond of. I played this some time ago and I must have taken a short branch, because I didn't get to any of the major story parts I recognized from Stiffy Makane. The other day I tried again, reveling in Undum's beauty and Mr. Ashwell's unique and intriguing illustrations, and I found the longer path, which got me to my favorite part.

(Spoiler - click to show)When you get inside Pamela's abode, the FUCKHERFUCKHERFUCKHERFUCKHER! suggestion is repeated and spills outside the bounding box on the page. That made me giggle.

It's categorized as AIF, but the high-minded parodic style verges more on tidy suggestiveness rather than explicit perversion, which is well-done. This is the SM story told the way it needs to be if it's appearing on unfurling aged parchment in a library with brass fixtures and a butler that serves brandy.


(Spoiler - click to show)Why don't more people write in Undum? My excuse is the documentation is a bit thin and assumes you are completely conversant in html and CSS. If this thing had a Twine front-end, I'd be all up in that like Stiffy Makane with a doughnut.

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Sam Kabo Ashwell, August 3, 2013 - Reply
Thanks for the review.

Why don't more people write in Undum? My excuse is the documentation is a bit thin and assumes you are completely conversant in html and CSS.

To get the most out of Undum you need to be highly conversant in HTML, CSS and Javascript. You don't really need any of these to use its basic features, but even then the code is very persnickety, and when it fails it just totally fails without throwing up errors. (This can be overcome, but once again, that assumes you're conversant in web-dev tools.) Cavity uses some code borrowed from Jon Ingold that makes writing in Undum a bit less like pulling teeth, but even with that, it's still got a really jagged initial user experience compared to, say, I7 or Twine.
Hanon Ondricek, August 3, 2013 - Reply
Which, as I said, is a pity, since I love the look and feel - especially the scrolling. It almost makes me wish there was an Inform website template that could display in this style. I know it might be possible to do something like this with Vorple, but once again that delves into some arcane website knowledge.
Sam Kabo Ashwell, August 3, 2013 - Reply
Also, I understand what you actually mean by a 'leather library', but I choose to believe that it means something more Makane-appropriate.
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