Moon-Shaped

by Jason Ermer profile

Fantasy
2006

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Number of Reviews: 4
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful:
Less Disney than the Brothers Grimm, July 10, 2008
by Ron Newcomb (Seattle)

When thirteen year old Rosalind tires of her mother's angst, she sets off to grandmother's house for good food and better company. But upon arriving, she finds an empty house, a half-twisted quilt, and a full-on mystery. Thus begins her quest through space, memory and a closet full of skeletons.

Moon-Shaped is a typical puzzle-based interactive fiction, save that it favors fuller prose over fuller geography. Puzzles are of moderate difficulty and clued fairly well, and a menu interface offers progressive hints. A wonderful annotated walkthrough is also available separately, though experienced players will likely not need it. The overall result is a work that favors readers over game players and thoroughness over lateral thinking.

Two things kept me from granting Moon-Shaped a full five stars. One, a compass rose and/or a GO TO command would be greatly appreciated by us beginners who disorient easily. But more importantly, I never really felt close to anyone in the work despite the time I spent with it and the spacious in absentia flashbacks. I felt that each such scene was afraid of giving away too much, and the reticency caused me to rely on my knowledge of fantasy instead of the knowledge of the particulars of the work. Consequently, I saw where the work was headed far too soon.

Regardless these idiosyncratic nitpicks, Moon-Shaped is a good work, and I especially recommend it to those who enjoyed Emily Short's Bronze.

(This review is for release 2 of Moon-Shaped.)