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About the Story
Let Caroline take you by the hand.
32nd Place - 20th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2014)
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Number of Reviews: 3
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This game is completely CYOA. However, to make your choice, you must type it in.
This is obnoxious and wasteful. But, on the other hand, it makes choices more meaningful as you must type them out.
I went through 5 chapters, and reached some white text that faded out after a fairly-explicit romantic scene. My game didn't work after that.
I didn't really connect with this game, and the interactivity left something to be desired.
There is a lack of real interaction in this story. It's generally either A or B. And many times it's just 'type this to proceed' which doesn't make for a very interactive story.
In addition the characters are fairly two dimensional and everything just happens pretty quickly.
Despite all of this I was still very interested in the narrative and I wanted very much to play through to the conclusion, which is why it was so frustrating when my game stopped working at the line 'The sound of a deep bell reverberates through the building.'
Please test this a bit better next time so everyone can complete the game.
You're on a dinner date with Caroline. She's mysterious, and just before you leave her for the night, she tells you to meet her at Hydra Park the next day.
Caroline has the looks of a Twine game but uses a streamlined parser. Despite this, though, the range of actions available to the PC was extremely limited - meaning instead of clicking links as in Twine, one has to type out the keywords… word for word.
The minimal presentation of the text, while pretty, made the game feel claustrophobic. Perhaps it was meant to heighten the uneasy atmosphere of later chapters. Perhaps it was to highlight the impact of the words, the terse questions. If it was, then this worked for me.
The lack of choices in what would ordinarily be extremely open-ended situations (sitting in a room with a stranger, for example) felt contrived sometimes. This made it hard for me to suspend disbelief, though this was at least somewhat addressed in the final chapter.
I had a little beef with this curious fact: in Caroline, no one has much of a background story and everyone is generic! The PC is just… a man. Caroline… is a woman. This all added to the claustrophobic feel of the game. In the end, Caroline scores neither on the quality of story, nor on use of game mechanics.