by Dan Doyle III profile

Slice of life

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Number of Reviews: 7
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8 of 12 people found the following review helpful:
Surprisingly, Not My Cup Of Tea, November 5, 2010
by AmberShards (The Gothic South)

Ordinarily I would eat up a game with dark humor and savor all the odd and eerie elisions that it gave me, but not so, here. I think the first strike is the main character; simply, she doesn't arouse any sympathy or empathy in my chest. She has several character flaws that work against her -- toilet-mouth, sexually loose, rather shallow.

The diary is strike two. If it was well-done, the game could be effective (as a tragedy), but if not, it would mark the long grey march to the end. I was looking forward to a fascinating inner life, one haunted by despair and a clutching for hope, but it came off pedestrian and flat. What the main character has experienced just doesn't seem sufficient to motivate her to commit suicide. The soaring highs, the crashing lows, the sense of oppression from which suicide seems to proffer the only hope -- these are not present. Perhaps that is a backhanded way of demonstrating the needlessness of suicide, but the lack of empathy could just as easily become another brick in the wall. "See? Even people who write games about it don't really understand it!" quoth the overwrought teen.

As for game play, there are very few bugs. The only one I found was where the narrator slipped into first person when second person had been used all along. The game distinguishes sensibly between vague options (such as "turn on water"). You can do most things that you'd expect to be able to. The only exceptions involved water, which is notoriously difficult to deal with, but if you're going to have a tub, I think that you've accepted the challenges of water. To make it purple prose is a cop-out.

The writing style is a bit rough, and it often uses hyphens in the place of semicolons or periods. A bit more polishing is in order.

Finally, the whole razon d'etre of the game is contradictory -- strike three. The help traces the evolution of the game and the author's purpose. After I read that, I thought, "Ok, I can see why he did it." However, not all endings have a postscript as described in the help. Thus, the entire stated reason of the game (to show the effects of suicide) is negated. Was that slapped on to salve the author's conscience? It's a bait-and-switch scenario.

If you're going to make a game like this, it should be better-rounded, simply due to the sensitive subject nature. As it stands, it encourages you to keep playing to see how many different endings you can discover; the different endings of course are different manners in which you attempt suicide. Suicide, despite the author's stated intentions, glorifies suicide.