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About the Story
Set in an unusual cyber/virtual reality background, you play a disembodied consciousness trapped in an electron prison of the mind.
2nd Place, Inform Division - First Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (1995)
Escape from cyberspace in this small game. An ambitious attempt at providing a virtual environment operating on logical rules that the player must figure out. Unfortunately, it makes a few too many assumptions about how the player will interperet the world; few puzzles are solvable without using the built-in hint menu to find out what the author was thinking. Full of time limits.
-- Carl Muckenhoupt
The puzzles are fairly easy, though one or two are quite contrived and may need quite a bit of thinking about. Also, you tend to die a lot as you are only given a limited number of turns to solve a problem before being dumped back at the restore/restart prompt.
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I thought that a game opening with a William Gibson quote would be something to look at. Hm. The problem was that I never quite understood the game's mechanics. So it was a bit of looking around and trying. And failing. I didn't get what anything was supposed to represent in computer terms, the time limits are evil, and well, I couldn't bring myself to care about the story that much thanks to all this.
(It's a bad thing when puzzles don't make sense even after looking at the walkthrough.)
But I have to say that all this is in a large part due to personal taste in IF - while I'm not completely averse to puzzles, I'm averse to these (leaps of logic, a lot of trial and error), and the Tron-like VR environment didn't immerse me at all.
This game's imagery reminded me a bit of Tron. You are enclosed in a cube with a grid of lines as a virtual fence around you. Only your mind is imprisoned, in a VR environment. Someone is trying to get you out, and you must follow their directions.
The game requires many unusual leaps of logic, as well as a few difficult guessing problems. The story was fun, the map was easy to navigate, and the puzzle solutions often make sense after the fact.
Having played many of the old school games, I feel like the story of this one is better than most (I preferred it over Uncle Zebulons Will), but it's difficult puzzles combined with its strict linearity is a problem. A more open puzzle plan would have helped.
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