Choices

by David Whyld profile

Pornographic / CYOA
2004

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Number of Ratings: 9
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1-9 of 9


- E. W. B., February 23, 2016

- Serge Kirillov, August 12, 2015

- E.K., May 9, 2013

- Sam Kabo Ashwell (Seattle), April 16, 2012

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful:
An indecisive game, October 25, 2011
by EJ

"Choices" is a game that doesn't seem to know what it wants to be. Is it a lighthearted, sexy piece following the misadventures of a teenager who really wants to get into her teacher's pants (but will take anyone else she can get along the way)? Or is it a more serious drama about said teenager's crumbling home life and said teacher's terrible secret? I really don't know. There is nothing wrong in principle with having some serious plot along with your porn (nor yet with having sex scenes in your serious drama), but in this case the different tones of the various scenes did not mesh well, resulting in an odd and disconcerting sort of mood whiplash.

One problem that this causes is with the (Spoiler - click to show)sexual abuse/blackmail storyline. Was that supposed to be portrayed as titillating (as indeed the heroine seems to find it at times), or was it supposed to be horrifying? It came off different ways in different scenes, with the result that it was hard to take fully seriously, but also made the (Spoiler - click to show)sex scenes with the teacher (and possibly her sister) at the end fairly uncomfortable. It is quite possible that the game was simply written for people who enjoy (Spoiler - click to show)fictional depictions of rape, which is not at all my kink -- so it may just be that I'm having problems with it because it isn't aimed at me. All I can say is that the handling of that storyline definitely did not work for me.

As for the heroine's troubles at home, they seem intended to offer the reader insight into who she is and why she acts as she does. It doesn't quite work, however, as it's all very trite and the characterizations of her family members never rise above the level of two-dimensional caricatures: Alcoholic Dad, Catty Mom, Delinquent Brother (with bonus Creepy Uncle in one scene). The heroine's insecurities about her sexuality, meanwhile, also suffer from the game's sexy/serious dichotomy: why is someone who doesn't want anyone to know she's gay trying to seduce any girl or woman who looks at her? It's a wonder her secret didn't get out a long time ago (although to be fair to the game, no one who finds out seems especially surprised by it).

It's not a terrible game; the choose-your-own-adventure format is fun and not something you see often, and aside from a few typos/misspellings the quality of the prose is generally good. There are a number of lines that are quite funny, often in a darkly sarcastic sort of way. It's just that all things considered, I think the game would have been better off if it had abandoned all pretenses of having a plot that deals with Important Issues and embraced its gratuitously sexy nature, or if it had put a little more effort into portraying those Important Issues with sensitivity and nuance.


- Mr. Patient (Saint Paul, Minn.), September 11, 2011

- Ben Cressey (Seattle, WA), July 19, 2011

- TempestDash (Cincinnati, Ohio), December 11, 2009

- perching path (near Philadelphia, PA, US), October 7, 2009


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