New Year's Eve, 2019

by Autumn Chen profile

Part of Pageantverse
Slice of life
2022

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Number of Reviews: 3
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
Realistic and thoughtful story of a difficult social event, April 16, 2022
by Wynter (London, UK)
Related reviews: Twine fiction

You are Qiuyi/Karen Zhao, a young Chinese-American who is home from university and celebrating New Year's Eve with friends and family - except that you suffer from terrible social anxiety and really, really do not feel like celebrating or even socialising at all. It's six hours until midnight. How will you fill all those hours?

This is a thoughtful, character-focused narrative written in Dendry, a choice-based format which is well suited to this story: Karen feels trapped, her options limited. Various social interactions are on offer, but all are difficult; other possibilities include taking a walk, eating from the buffet (I did a lot of that) and playing interactive fiction to pass the time.

This game did a really great job of simulating a social event that goes on for too, too long, and the feeling of having to find something to do to fill all those empty hours - but though the evening is boring, the game itself, the relationships described and the narrative voice, held my interest really well. If you check out the 'Credits' page, there is a Spotify playlist which I would have played while reading for extra atmosphere, if I'd read that bit at the start.

This is a really polished, professional game, and I must check out the prequel.