Number of Reviews: 11
Write a review Mediocre, but fun, September 18, 2015
by mjhayes (Somewhere east of Garinham)
If you read about the game before you try it, you know that you play as an attractive female college freshman who has not yet turned 18, and is stranded in the desert due to car trouble. That alone implies that playing the game will be a bit of a guilty pleasure.
Sure enough, it is. It's not very well-written, but it's not all that bad either. Although the game progresses linearly along one of two major paths, it leaves the player free to experiment in a lot of different ways. There is a time limit, but it's a very generous one, once you've handled the immediate emergency of finding shade before high noon.
What I like about the game is that most of the "inventory objects" are not necessary to complete the game, so you do not have to be a pac-rat and collect everything you can get your hands on. In many cases, more than one solution will solve a problem, and in some cases, the objects have no use whatsoever. Another thing is that body parts as objects were implemented very well here, and the game had received honorable mentions for that aspect.
There is some IF "inside humor" as well, which you will either enjoy or groan at. For one thing, try (Spoiler - click to show)opening the trunk of your car and counting the dirty laundry - you might recognize that number. The usual easter egg commands are recognized as well.
What I don't like about the game is that some scenarios don't seem to fit with the character. Crossing the road without looking both ways first will sometimes cause you to get hit by a car. For one thing, a young woman who has made in into college should instinctively know to look both ways first. Plus, you're out in the middle of the desert, where you can hear an oncoming vehicle from half a mile away. At some point, you might try (Spoiler - click to show)touching yourself, which results in a canned message with a slang phrase. Do it multiple times and it will cycle through a list of slang phrases with the same canned message wrapped around it.
The game is not difficult to complete at all, although a few solutions were obtuse, like getting the tow truck to re-appear at the service station. Because you often will wait to let time pass by, you can enter a number with the usual "wait" command to wait for a given number of turns, knowing that two turns equals one minute. I did uncover an interesting bug, which I'm sure will never get fixed. (Spoiler - click to show)Try attacking the driver of the gray pickup after you enter the pickup bed, before it pulls off.
In summary, this game goes down in IF history, in neither a good nor a bad way. The author went on to write some of the most memorable IF to date, so this can be seen as a sort of humble beginning, all the more so if you view the source code.