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>VERBOSE -- Paul O'Brian's Interactive Fiction Page
Despite the occasional moment of breathtaking implementation, though, Splashdown feels like it's not quite out of beta yet. There are a considerable number of typos, and sloppy formatting is rampant, especially when it comes to the robot companion's random dialogue. In addition, I encountered a few minor bugs and glitches here and there. I hope very much that the author takes reviews and feedback to heart and releases a post-comp edition of this game. With some polish, I think it could be a really fun Infocom-style ride.
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"Splashdown" is the first completed work of IF made by a veteran of the video game industry. According to Wikipedia, Paul Furio currently works for Microsoft, and that may explain why this game ended up with only 3 stars in my book. The story premise is interesting, the code is solid, but, like a lot of Microsoft software, it seems to be derivative of something better without bringing anything new to the table.
Strongly reminiscent of the Infocom titles "Planetfall" and "Suspended", "Splashdown" left me feeling vaguely unsatisfied at its end, perhaps because the evocation of those classics set my expectations too high.
Then again, maybe it's just because, as an IF Comp entry, this game is designed to be solved in about two hours. This piece is definitely in the "text adventure" category, and there's a limit to how much a puzzle game can achieve in the framework of an IF Comp entry's proscribed length. "Splashdown" hits that limit and leaves me wanting more.
Overall, this game was enjoyable, with many moments of discovery and interest. If it were expanded to a "feature-length" game, I would definitely revisit it.
This game draws a lot of inspiration from planetfall. You wake up from cryogenic storage to save your ship with a wisecracking robot companion. By accessing computer systems and elevators, you try to figure out how disaster struck.
I played for about 10 minutes without the walkthrough, but a power countdown was stressful, leaving (it seemed) little room for error.
It wasn't bad, but I had some issues with guessing verbs and the aforementioned timer.
IF Comp 2004 seemed to be filled with games about astronauts awakening from cryogenic sleep. This one is really good, though. It's a funny take on Infocom's classics, with the same gentle humor and fiendish puzzles of its
models. Great sidekick.
If you enjoyed Splashdown...
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