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by Marnie Parker


(based on 9 ratings)
1 review

About the Story

"A Glulx Inform romp (with graphics and music)." [--blurb from Competition Aught-One]

Game Details


16th Place - 7th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2001)

Editorial Reviews

Baf's Guide

The main idea of this game is, before starting writing anything (be it a novel or an adventure game), the author should learn how to properly use the main tool of the trade - namely, the language. Since this postulate is brought home to the player not always by means of humane methods, it's recommended for the player to possess a sense of humour, a tolerance to critique, and the ability not to take her/himself too seriously. Some of the people also might be scared away by the rather unusual puzzles (one of them, for instance, represents none other than a grammar test), and some railroading. Those who decide to play Carma despite the aforementioned issues, will be rewarded with great graphic effects of highest quality (the word "effects" is an understatement; I'd call this work "a semi-graphic adventure", rather than a "text adventure", or even "illustrated text adventure"). Also, a couple of episodes were real masterpieces, which I'm never going to forget.

-- Valentine Kopteltsev

>INVENTORY - Paul O'Brian writes about interactive fiction

This game depicts the clashes between a wanna-be writer and the punctuation that said writer has heinously abused throughout his/her career. In fact, the primary complainant is an outraged comma, and that comma's chief grievance is, you guessed it, splices. What can I say? It's my kind of game. Even better, it's done quite well, on the whole.

Carma uses the graphics and sound capabilities of Glulx to delightful effect, especially in its charming illustrations of punctuation marks dressed up to suit various occasions. One of my favorite scenes occurs when you ask the comma about splices. Suddenly, the scene dissolves, to reform as the archetypal spaghetti western town. Ennio Morricone's theme from The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly wafts over the speakers. We see graphics of a variety of punctuation marks, dressed up as stereotypical Western characters, and the comma (in cowboy hat and serape, naturally) marches towards you, ready for a duel to the death. It's hilarious.

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Unfortunately, I found little enjoyment in Carma outside of the whizzbang multimedia, and I guess I'm still old-fashioned enough to feel that that's missing the point of Interactive Fiction. The biggest problem was simply the *lack* of interactivity: I felt like I was spending over half my time in cut scenes (note to authors: please make cut scenes skippable!), and the interactive parts were not well-fleshed out. The "strike" scene was particularly tedious--interview X, ask X about X, ask X about sign, ask X about demands, repeat N times.
-- Suzanne Britton
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
An animated comic about commas, July 16, 2017

This is a pretty fun comic to watch, but has very little interactivity. It worked for me in-browser.

It's essentially an animated comic about a comma who really doesn't like you. In each scene, you can mostly wait until the next scene, but you can also try a few basically well-cued actions. There is a scene or two, though, with really badly cued actions.

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Carma on IFDB


The following polls include votes for Carma:

Games with graphics and/or sound by eyesack
I couldn't find an easy way to search for this, so I figured I'd ask the hivemind: What games use graphics and/or sound to enhance the gameplay, similar to City of Secrets and Necrotic Drift?

Most unique games by Jeremy Freese
Whatever else might be said about ___________, there's not another game like it.

This is version 6 of this page, edited by Paul O'Brian on 7 May 2022 at 11:11pm. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item - Delete This Page