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About the Story
In this short game, you play as a survivor of an airplane crash. You regain consciousness on a gentle slope with a broken leg, your watch beside you. Help yourself and the other survivors as best you can.
20th Place - 3rd Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (1997)
Since this is a small game, and finding out what happened is an important plot point, all I'll say about the premise is that it's a real-life emergency situation in which you play hero despite your own injuries. Dramatic, but a bit buggy and low on detail. Once past a certain point, your required actions and their motivations become far from obvious.
-- Carl Muckenhoupt
Admittedly, several of your actions are not entirely logical, but the game is reasonably enjoyable with disbelief suspended: the writing conveys a degree of urgency, and the plot devices, even if not wildly original, work the way they're supposed to.
-- Duncan Stevens a.k.a. Second April
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>INVENTORY - Paul O'Brian writes about interactive fiction
[T]he story is worth experiencing, walkthrough or not. The author presents a very realistic and highly compelling puzzle-solving situation: you are the survivor of a plane crash. You must help your fellow passengers and somehow prevent the plane from killing you all when it explodes, as it inevitably will. This situation is a natural one for interactive fiction: you must traverse a limited area, under pressure from a time limit, solving very real puzzles with dozens of lives in the balance. Even though there are some problems with the prose and puzzles, it's still a memorable feeling to crawl through the wreckage, a situation made even more evocative by the fact that it really could happen to most anyone.
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Number of Reviews: 2
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This is a short, loosely timed game about waking up after some sort of accident and then trying to help yourself and others before time runs out.
The writing is interesting, and the game feels fairly polished. However, it really suffers from 'guess what the author is thinking' syndrome. Some of the actions are completely unmotivated. However, playing around on my own was fairly fun.
'm very conflicted about Down. On the one hand, this is my second KT game (not counting Tetris) and I really like his writing. I like the ideas of his games, the way he has of evoking a particular setting, a mood, a genre convention.
But. Beyond the first puzzle, this was terribly clued. Lots of verb-guessing, reading the author's mind, and general not-sure-what-to-do-isms. On the one hand, I could also complain about the relative barrenness of the map; very little is implemented. And yet, as in Spur, KT manages to convey a lot with a little. So I can picture myself (YOU) in the tiny map, the black smoke rising in the late afternoon air, the people huddled in their little groups of misery.
What I can't do is interact with all of that very much. This is a static piece, regardless of the finale. Having sat with it for a week, it feels like an outline, almost, rather than a complete game.
There's a disjointedness in Down's puzzles and set scenes - both in terms of logic and implementation - which hasn't resolved over time. There's a hole in the center of it al, an emptiness; I almost feel like I'm watching ghosts relive the scene of their demise.