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Incredible atmosphere and storytelling, December 5, 2020
I had played and enjoyed text adventure games before *Bronze*, but this was the first that I truly loved.
Based on the fairytale of Beauty and the Beast (not one I am very familiar with), this game is long enough to keep you busy for a while, with puzzles which are neither too simple nor infuriatingly difficult. But its greatest strengths are the atmosphere that it evokes, through the description of the castle and the objects in it - rich and Gothic, sometimes macabre - and the incredible storytelling: not just in the present day, but a whole history which leaves its traces in the castle, and which can be pieced together through paintings, objects, rooms and books. *Bronze* reminded me somewhat of Angela Carter's book *The Bloody Chamber*, a collection of modern retellings of fairytales with a dark but beautifully-described atmosphere.
An illuminating post on Short's blog explained how the story developed, leading to its various endings (CONTAINS SPOILERS: https://emshort.blog/2006/12/31/the-making-of-bronze/) - I never succeeded in finding one of these.
The 'go to' function is very much appreciated, and there is a tutorial mode for new players of IF. But the atmosphere and storytelling should appeal to players at all levels.