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by Damon Stanley


Web Site

(based on 3 ratings)
3 reviews

About the Story

A Twine Dream Emulator

Game Details


Entrant - Single Choice Jam


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Number of Reviews: 3
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
When "it was all a dream" is not a cop-out, August 14, 2023
by Andrew Schultz (Chicago)
Related reviews: 2023 Single Choice Jam

Thicket certainly leaves an odd impression at first. There's a short sentence, where different fragments are underlined. You click on one, and then there's a "wake into the tower" link back. Clicking on enough (or the right ones) opens up more, until there's a full story on the hub page. Then you wake up for good, with a "wake into the tower" link on the main story page.

This seems relatively tidy, perhaps even pedestrian, but the links are to odd dreams, which frequently result in death, or in capitulating to dark forces. I found this effective, and it often reminded me of times I rolled over and kept having different dreams, or what seemed to be dreams within dreams, some of which I wanted to remember and some I didn't. Mine were about far mundaner things, but they still had the sense of dying just before I woke up, but -- well, describing my own here wouldn't be all that interesting. You know how it is.

The author tends to link up the sort of hot night where your air conditioner doesn't work with more fantastic settings, and if I didn't connect all the dots, I was at least able to flow with the writing, which I enjoyed. The stories are kept to a page in Twine Chapbook format, and they vary a lot.

A tip for lawnmowering through: as Thicket doesn't change the link colors once you visit them, you may wish to click on a link, then hit tab and enter once you're done reading, so you know the next link to click. The sentence fragments are somewhat related to the stories that launch, but the stories will be involving enough, you may forget where you were in the main sentence. Not that repeating any one passage is exactly punishment, but just a note for convenience.

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A surreal dream landscape, January 14, 2024
by MathBrush
Related reviews: less than 15 minutes

This game is written for the Single Choice Jam.

It depicts a single passage from which many other links branch out, each giving a disjointed dreamlike narrative.

I think the game succeeds admirably in its design, being dreamlike and disconnected. However, that very disconnectedness works against its lasting impact, for me. I almost wish that either things had been more connected (hidden narrative) or much more disconnected.

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Dreams within dreams? or just Confusion galore?, August 25, 2023
by manonamora
Related reviews: singlechoice

A restless night, a spotted sleep, and strange and almost non-sensical dreams. That is what this self described Twine Dream Simulator is all about.

This entry is very strange. At first glance, it seemed to me like this was some sort of nonsensical snippets grouped together for not reason. Then I thought I could link some of them together through names or recurring characters or setting. And finally… I just realised it I was just completely and utterly confused and gave up. Those are just dreams within dreams, tired half-thoughts, and weird brain patterns.

I guess if you read between the lines you could see some snippets of real life hidden behind a heavy coating of fantasy, or mythology, or just surrealist absurdism. Thoughts that take space in your brain, and take focus during dreams. Things like being late on bills, the end of relationships, nightmare as kids, fights, meeting a therapist… but you really need to push aside the heavy prose to find that - the snippets of memories almost drown in it.
At the end, I wondered if the sleeping character was in a mental institute (or maybe it had been?), or if this whole thing was a metaphor for PPD (considering the end?), or these dreams were shared between multiple people (which would make thing so much more confusing…).

While it does do a good job at bringing to life how strange, and vivid (almost graphic), and nonsensical, and frightening, dreams and sleep could be… I kinda got bored and tired halfway through.

And this is not a short game! It took me 2 good hours to go through it all…

There are 45 snippets inside the game, with thick flowery (almost pedantic) prose layered with metaphors and imageries. I’ve had nights like those where I kept waking up from dreams… but 45 different times is a lot - too much… Cutting it down maybe to 5 or so per playthrough would have helped with the pacing… It really is a lot.

Another thing that didn’t help was not being able to track what had been visited previously. With 45 different entries… I took a screenshot of all the links available and crossed them down one by one. A colour change on the link (or the underline) would have made this so much nicer as a player.

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