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Choicescript version of a dating show/slasher flick, October 22, 2022
This is, I believe, an adaptation of an award-winning screenplay by the author, and I think it shows in the quality of the writing.
In this game, you are invited to a reality show the season after someone got stabbed by a Barbie-masked attempted murderer. This season, everyone is back, so the would-be killer is among your group.
Gameplay is split between some classic-style romance gameplay (who do you talk with? who do you ask on a date? etc.) and running from or fighting with the killer.
The tone isn't always realistic, but it feels like a stylistic choice, making it more like a slasher flick. People get injuries that would be deadly in real life but continue to run or talk for a long time after; tv producers seem not worried about liability, etc. It makes for a slightly surreal game that puts you at a level removed from the experience, better able to contemplate bigger questions like gender roles in film and why audiences like terrible things.
Overall, I felt like the writing and agency worked well. I played a ton of Choicescript games last year and I would say this one is above-average in its use of the system.
This is a more mature game, with some profanity, a large amount of violence/blood and some mild/network-friendly sexuality.
While each individual part of this game is excellent, it didn't completely gel for me; a part of that was that I chose to be a cis het male and the game seemed to anticipate I'd be a woman, including people staring at my heaving chest and so on. That's probably intentional, given that the game is questioning these very assumptions, but making intelligent and thoughtful statements doesn't always translate to compelling gameplay. By and large though this is an excellent effort and one I believe most people would enjoy if they are not turned off by slasher flicks.