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Super-short but solid., December 23, 2012
Having just installed the shiny new Hugo game interpreter Hugor on my Mac, I hopped onto IFDB to find a quick game with which to test it. That's where I discovered Dragon Hunt. Three minutes later I had played through Dragon Hunt three times, and had to acknowledge that the game probably fit the 'quick' part of my brief too well.
In this accurately named adventure you find yourself trekking with a band of hunters through the wilderness towards Dragon Mountain, where the creature lives. The game has a sense of urgency because the hunting group must move forward every few turns, and also because there is a pounding and ominous MOD music file looping in the background. The prose is clean and simple and the main actions that will occur to you to try are all covered.
This is not speed-IF, though it is similarly sized. I'm uninterested in speed-IFs because their lack of implementation bugs me and their effects are too ephemeral. Dragon Hunt is still pretty ephemeral because of its size, but it manages to quickly develop some presence as you necessarily turn it over a few times. I didn't like the music at first but three minutes later I had changed my mind. Actions I couldn't try the first time I played because the hunting party moved forward too quickly I was able to try on subsequent games. Given that this is the authors' first Hugo game (their comments told me so) and also a small game playing against my 'size matters' biases, I would probably be an ungrateful churl to demand more of Dragon Hunt. It also looks like it was the authors' last game.