The Chosen Path

by Noah Si profile

Episode 6 of Maverick Hunter

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More like the Forced path, April 2, 2024
by manonamora
Related reviews: revivaljam

The Chosen Path is a Twine interactive game where you are an unnamed AFGNCAAP character on a path to become a martial artist in some sort of unnamed and unreal world. Along your way, you come across Dr Syrup, the main antagonist of the game, which you will need to overcome to rescue the Author and Emily Short (and win a prize?).

This is as far as I could make sense of it, as the story is more of an absurd amalgam of references (which seem more done for the sake of referencing), than a coherent narrative. Even with its very linear progression (you don’t have more than 3-4 real choices in the 122 passages of the file), I was more confused with how parts moved from one another… until I gave up and wrote it off as this is all either just a dream or a really bad trip.

I’m not super sure of the point of using Emily Short as an NPC here, especially one that you’d need to rescue. With how influential she has been in the space (which the game acknowledges), it would have made more sense for her to have enough PLOT ARMOUR to not have been in this situation to begin with. Or that she would need the player’s “capabilities” to make her weapon work better than she could. It felt cheap.
But then again, I’m never really comfortable with the use of actual regular living people being used in games period (especially if the person has not given their consent for it).

As a game structure, when looking at the available actions and how the game responds to the player, it does feel like a missed opportunity not have used a parser format (or a hybrid one for the 2-3 choices there are). You are often set into rooms where you can EXAMINE objects or sometimes yourself, TAKE some of them, or USE others. There is also a section where you need to navigate through different rooms, with all the NSWE (and the diagonals) listed - all aside one being valid (the having to go back and forth is tedious). As for the Alice in Wonderlan - like puzzle (EAT/DRINK) it could have been an interesting puzzle of pacing out which item to use to get to the right height.

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