To Beseech Old Sins

by Nic June

Part of Mourner's Kaddish for Golems
2024

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Number of Reviews: 4
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Left me a bit lost, May 16, 2024

I was drawn into this one by the stylish UI and the character-focused setup, immediately interested in our three MCs’ circumstances and their relationship. Their teasing, comfortable dynamic was fun to read about, especially with the sense that these were some precious, stolen moments in an otherwise strictly regimented life. However, the introduction to these characters’ lives doesn’t match up with what actually plays out in the story; the setup gets quickly got thrown out the window, especially when the cozy domestic moment we start out witnessing becomes an urgent mission.

As other reviews have mentioned, I think the confusion definitely comes in part from this being the third in a series. Not having played the preceding games, I couldn’t follow what was going on with the mission, completely lacking a frame of reference for it. This ended up creating a major disconnect between me and the characters, which was the opposite of my experience at the beginning, when I thought I understood what they might be thinking and feeling.

A final issue is that most of the game’s passages contain two types of links—ones that lead to brief asides and return you to the passage you came from when you're done, and ones that advance to the next main-text passage. However, both types of links are colored and styled exactly the same, and the game has no “back” button, meaning that if you inadvertently miss an aside, there’s no way to rewind and see it. While I was able to crack the code as to which type of link is which—single-word links are asides, multi-word links advance—signaling the difference in a more obvious way would have been a better design choice.

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