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About the Story
Body horror choose-your-own-adventure game about heartache.
|Average Rating: |
Number of Reviews: 2
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This story is very directly written and horrifies with emotion and monstrous implications. It feels like some of the moody J-horror short films without splattering blood, but rather the rumbling, queasy burn of ideas in your brain where you don't know if the monster is internal or external to your point of view.
Very nice use of Twine. I'm starting to think one of my requisites for any Twine story is going to be that the author *must* style the text outside of the default - at minimum, MAKE THE TEXT BIGGER. If your story only takes up the top quarter of the screen, you have problems.
This is about the right length for a choice-based scenario, and nicely paced between text and choices. The writing is not indulgent, but gives enough details to get the goosebumps across.
Here's a game set in another cyberpunkish, dystopian world, where biotechnology is so advanced that all you need to clone an organism - and indeed a human being - is a bit of their tissue and a special reagent. This is what you've resorted to, in an attempt to bring back your fiancée.
But nothing's ever as easy as that, and you may not always get what you expected...
Her Pound of Flesh had a theme familiar to that in many of this year's IFComp games, with the theme of sacrificing something to get your heart's desire, yet ending up with less than you started with. Because the author establishes the PC's motivations and dreams so well, the PC's helplessness in the face of events taking a rather squicky turn evokes sympathy: it's clear that thoughts about her are consuming the PC's life, even to the point of appearing in the PC's dreams.
The game progresses in 'days', with each day comprising about three to four choices. In dealing with her, there's often the choice to treat her as the human you remember her to be, or as something... less. Each day reveals new and terrifying things about what she has become.
In some ways, Her Pound of Flesh wonders what the limit of humanity is. Is it worth it, to have the physical form but nothing else? But more than that, this game is a story about longing. Despite there being less and less of her humanity day by day, the PC keeps turning back to what reminds him of her: things like her scent and her hair.
Overall, it may involve quite a lot of body horror and gore, but ultimately this game is heartfelt... and tugs at the heartstrings. Read that how you will.
(This review was originally published with modifications at https://verityvirtue.wordpress.com/2015/12/19/her-pound-of-flesh/)
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