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The Princess of Vestria

by K Paulo profile


Web Site

(based on 16 ratings)
6 reviews

About the Story

‘Be brave, listen to the voice inside that guides you…’

When Princess Imelda’s seriously ill brother appears to her in a dream telling her she can save him, she sets out from the palace on a quest of danger and discovery that will be the making of a queen.

Game Details


9th Place - 28th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2022)


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Number of Reviews: 6
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Most Helpful Member Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
Well-executed medieval fantasy, January 17, 2023
by Andrew Schultz (Chicago)
Related reviews: IFComp 2022

I can't remember a medieval-fantasy IFComp entry executed as well as PoV. Often people write one just to try their hand at fiction, and it falls flat. And it may be the most entertaining game in IFComp 2022. Lost Coastlines borders on the surreal, and Only Possible Prom Dress has its share of wild puzzles where you will probably laugh at a few of them. But PoV reads like a fantasy novel, down to listing the chapter you're on, where you get to make choices and even fail. You get five lives, but with save/restore, you don't need them. It feels mainstream, which makes it a rarity for IFComp. It has no mind-blowing plot twists, but it has plenty of decisions to make and people to make and also has a neat ending where, the more friends you made, the more ways you have to win.

This is a winning formula for a lot of people, me included. You, as Princess Imelda, find your brother Prince Alexander has been poisoned. How, and why? Is it foreign intrigue or something magic?

A lot of the elements in here pop up in fantasy books: princess uses disguise to escape, princess is impeded by allies and enemies, princess befriends or works with someone initially hostile, princess is nice to poor person and gets unexpected aid, princess realized her royal family is potentially awful in ways she hadn't suspected. They're all combined for a fast-paced experience. You have choices whether to learn magic and when to use it, with a strong "it's the friends you make along the way" undercurrent. It reminded me a lot of the Lloyd Alexander books I read in my youth, except with graver risk.

Given that it's pretty easy to ditch certain companions (including your main one, whom I liked a lot. There's a very neat bit about him coloring his hair for disguise,) it might be fun to try and run through with them not around. It seems like complex work to decide which game-winning scenarios are allowable, and I'm quite curious if there's a way to lock yourself out of a win in the final chapter through sheer pigheadedness. There seems like an opportunity for pathos there, but it might be too cruel to the reader who's worked through so much. The final fight has several paths to victory depending on whom you take along, which is a neat touch. You don't have to be Ms. Super-Good.

I don't really have any huge criticisms. The introduction brushed me back a bit, since there's so much to establish. A lot of scrolling screens that set up the fantasy land history. And the end seems like an opportunity missed, as well. I never really understood what luck in the stats was for, as i only lost it once. A lot of actions in the final combat are repetitive and involve waiting for the right moment, and on getting your brother cured, you get a brief biography of your reign, and it's static, but below it are stats and attributes. This was largely noticeable because the middle breezed by so wonderfully, and I really enjoyed it. (Also: the music box puzzle others mentioned? I wasn't fully a fan, either, but I was glad for the walkthrough and explanation.)

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
A long, well-fleshed out fantasy adventure about saving your brother, December 8, 2022
by MathBrush
Related reviews: about 2 hours

I beta-tested this game, so I won't post a score until after IF Comp.

This is one of the longest games in the competition. It's a Twine game with 7 chapters, and it has quite a few choices that have a major effect on the game.

I beta tested it a year ago, when it was unfinished, and it has been substantially improved and extended since then.

You play as the young princess of the kingdom of Vestria. Your brother has taken ill. You have to go on a quest to find how to save him while also dealing with the political fallout of a failed marriage and disastrous rebellion many years prior.

The pacing, writing, and interactivity are all imperfect, but come together in the way that really good games do (for my taste; everyone has different styles they like). The genre might theoretically be described as young adult (a young protagonist, no profanity and little sexuality or gore), but the game does allow you to be frequently ruthless in ways typically reserved for adult games. There is a family-friendly version for people who want to play with kids.

This game is noticeable for having several choices that affect big chunks of the game. When I beta tested, I killed someone early on; in this run through, that person ended up as my companion for much of the game.

There is a timed section in this game which can be rough; it gives you 10 minutes, though, for a single puzzle, and you can save and reload if needed.

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
A Princess's Adventure and Dangerous Trip , October 20, 2022
by reyryan
Related reviews: IF Comp 2022

A nice combination of interactive fiction and old rpg games,reminding me of Magium and the Great Tournament, The Princess of Vestria recounts the valiant story of the future queen-to-be Imelda the I. it starts off with Imelda's brother who has fallen unconscious from an unknown disease. She hears of the theories surrounding the illness and goes to find more clues about it after having a talk with the king and the people who thought of the theories. The dream was the final push for her to go on a secret and dangerous trip to find the cure for her brother's sickness.

Choices to choose from,routes to walk on and death endings galore. Luck and Life are the elements what determine the ending you get after each choice you make. This is one of those games where you have to think twice before making a choice recklessly or you'll be punished with a death sentence though luck could be on your side sometimes.

I'd like to know more about the kingdom or royal court's lore if possible because it didn't make sense to me the whole thing of "forgetting to inform one of the two heirs to the throne" about what happened to another member of the royal family. And the king was very... bland? He seems like a flat character when compared with the princess or all the other courtiers/characters.

It's a good game but it needs a little more work in expanding the worldbuilding and on some of the interactions between Imelda and the other characters just like with her father.

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The Princess of Vestria on IFDB

Recommended Lists

The Princess of Vestria appears in the following Recommended Lists:

Best fantasy games by MathBrush
These are my favorite games that include some sort of magical or fantastical element. Games with mostly horror or sci-fi elements are on other lists, as are surreal games, fairy tale/nursery games, and religious/mythological games. I've...

Favourite Games by Isaac Buckley


The following polls include votes for The Princess of Vestria:

Outstanding Game of the Year 2022 - Player's Choice by MathBrush
This poll is part of the 2022 IFDB Awards. The rules for the competition can be found here, and a list of all categories can be found here. This award is for the best overall game of 2022. Voting is open to all IFDB members. Eligible...

I'm looking for interactive games related to Arcadie: Second Born by Dr. Questionable
Games that take place in a medieval-like setting including an aspect of royalty, a rich-story, and some magic.

Outstanding Debut of 2022 - Author's Choice by MathBrush
This poll is part of the 2022 IFDB Awards. The rules for the competition can be found here, and a list of all categories can be found here. This award is for the best game of 2022 by a new author. Voting is anonymous and open only to...

See all polls with votes for this game

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