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About the Story
You are thrust into earthly existence to fulfill the tenth and final plague.
12th Place - 17th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2011)
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Number of Reviews: 3
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A grotesque and morbid short story where you find ways to murder the first sons. I did not find it to be an experience that I would find any enjoyment out of on its own, but it comes with design commentary (>COM) and religious subtext that I found interesting which is what led me to keep playing. This is not a fun game to play.
The strong points were the richness of the victims' lives. You have people trying to protect their houses by painting them with pitch, trying to desperately copy rituals and decide to not go outside, people trying to catch the cloud with a net, lots of slaves that are still firstborn children and definitely not getting freed. The weak points were the more overstated ones. I think the chilling look into the morality of the Bible had me come off feeling the right amount of unpleasant, but the adherence to the lesser known exact writing of the Bible such as the scene about how the pharaoh breaks down about how Yahweh mind controlled him was trying too hard to find something to point at and say this is evil. It's already pretty evil, no need to gild the lily then paint it with lamb's blood.
Tenth Plague is a competently handled short game- each scenario (other than the final one) is slightly more trickier than the last. There's also a hidden commentary mode, which is a neat feature.
There are only a few problems in the implementation of incidental items that Lynnea probably didn't expect anyone to bother interacting with, and I struggled with finding the wording for at least one of the puzzles, though it was always clear what I needed to do to proceed.
I really liked the small visual elements like the dead locusts on the roof, that hinted at the plagues that had come before. The puzzles were simple enough that the game moved along at a fast pace, which worked well for evoking the swift inevitibility of the plague. One of the strengths of IF, seen clearly here, is that novel game and story premises can be explored.
(As far as ratings go- I take 3 as being 'good', '4' as 'great', and five 'transcendental'. In truth, it deserves at least a 3.5).
This is a short horror game in a biblical setting. Puzzles are interesting with some good variety.
The game is heavy-handed in its writing. The point seems to be that the author thinks that parts of Exodus are ridiculous and/or disturbing, and has written this game to show how horrifying and deeply wrong God's actions are in this book. This heavy-handedness comes out more in the commentary; the author admits that she toned down the actual game's writing in order to increase the frightening atmosphere.
I have very different beliefs from the author, and I believe that the events in Exodus are mostly historical, with some errors introduced in the manuscript over time; and that the God of Exodus was and is filled with justice and mercy. This obviously affected my enjoyment of the game. But as for puzzles and atmosphere, this game is very well designed.
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