Textfire Golf

by Adam Cadre profile


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful:
IF game and golf simulator in one package, September 18, 2011
by Victor Gijsbers (The Netherlands)

I know little about golf; in fact, my golf knowledge has increased significantly by playing Textfire Golf. So I cannot comment on the accuracy of the representation of golf that Cadre gives us, but it feels realistic and detailed to a non-golfer.

That is important because Textfire Golf is, first and foremost, a golf game. You get a description of the course you are on, you select a club, and then you type "swing". This will open up a little semi-graphical interface in the title bar in which you have to press a key at the right time to indicate first the strength and then the direction of your shot. The aim is... well, the aim supposedly is to finish the 9-hole course in as few hits as possible. So at the core, here, we have an arcade game. (Don't worry if you're really bad at this, though: you can "undo" whenever you want.)

But there is also real interactive fiction going on. You can type any command you want, and interactions with the environment and with your three fellow golfers (some guys from work who have invited you to join them) are possible and sometimes lead to startling results. Your fellow golfers continually comment on how the game is going, and the final result of the game will depend on their scores as well as yours.

The combination works surprisingly well. The arcade game is entertaining and gives us something to do, while the characters keep us interested in completing the game. It's a weird little set-up, but definitely worth experiencing.

Should that be four stars? In the end, I decided to give the game three stars because the arcade part of the game is just not that interesting in the long run. Replaying the game will give you different endings, but not many people will be replaying this game more than once or twice.

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Emily Short, September 4, 2011 - Reply
This is interesting. My take on it was rather that the point of the game was to (Spoiler - click to show)manipulate your colleagues via the medium of golf rather than to win per se -- a typical Cadre-esque bit of misdirection there. Which made the game more intriguing to me -- enough to make it worth replaying a couple of times.
Victor Gijsbers, September 18, 2011 - Reply
Emily, perhaps I am missing something, but how do you manipulate your fellow players? I replayed the game and I understand that the end depends on the order in which the players finish. But you cannot influence the scores of other people, can you?
Emily Short, September 19, 2011 - Reply
Scores, no, not that I'm aware of; but you can manipulate their feelings and reactions, I think including some reactions during the game as well as at the end. (As I recall, anyway -- it's been years since I played.)
Victor Gijsbers, September 24, 2011 - Reply
Hm, OK. I can't say that I found any rich ways of interacting with the characters during the game, but perhaps I didn't look well enough or I wasn't perceptive enough. (The major problem of reviewing interactive works, of course.)
Victor Gijsbers, September 5, 2011 - Reply
I believe you may be right. (Spoiler - click to show)(The ending where you win the golf game is certainly not the "winning" ending, as one of course suspects from the beginning.) But I wasn't too eager to try the game again, because I had hit quite enough space bars -- if you see what I mean. So there may be interesting misdirection, but I wasn't provided with enough incentive to explore other directions.

This may just be apathy on my part, though. I see you have given the game five stars, and that might be inspire me to try again.
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