All Alone

by Ian Finley

Horror
2000

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Number of Reviews: 10
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful:
Great atmosphere, lousy plot, September 22, 2010
by Victor Gijsbers (The Netherlands)

All Alone actually scared me. Oh, it used a cheap trick to do it, but it was effective and very diegetic: my reaction of "Whaah! Oh, wait, how stupid to be scared by that" is exactly the same reaction the protagonist has in this situation.

What is good about All Alone is that it sets a mood and sets it well. It turns the player-character identification that some have seen as a drawback of IF into a great strength. This is how atmospheric horror ought to be done: claustrophobia, being alone, unexpected events. The uncapitalised out-of-viewpoint-character phrases were especially effective.

On the other hand, most of the story is very much clichéd, and the ending, which isn't, is its weakest part. I think this might have worked better as a game with a stronger puzzle content: you get to try and hide, and depending on how well you do it, you may live for a longer time -- perhaps even survive? Or perhaps not. There are possibilities for more suspense and anxiousness here.