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Language: English (en)
Current Version: 6
Development System: Inform 6
Baf's Guide ID: 2153
Followed by sequel Illuminismo Iniziato, by Michael J. Coyne
Nominee, Best Game; Nominee, Best Puzzles; Nominee, Best NPCs; Nominee, Best Individual Puzzle - 2003 XYZZY Awards
2nd Place overall; 2nd Place, Miss Congeniality Awards - 9th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2003)
The premise is a silly and familiar one: through inexplicable magic, you, an ordinary person from our world, are drawn into a fantasy universe.
But this one plays out with an unusual degree of charm and humor, and an assortment of tough puzzles. Some of these seemed underclued in the competition version, but may be better supported in the subsequent release. Most are solid and well-designed, however.
Implementation is quite strong throughout, and there are several well-written NPCs.
-- Emily Short
This game initially threw me for a loop; given the intimidating title and the scholastic setting of the opening, I was expecting a much more historical take than the one I was presented. My initial notes involved a fair amount of griping about such anachronisms as the use of Mendeleev's periodic table, but once I grasped what kind of game I was in for, I had a much more pleasant time. Risorgimento is a whimsical, well-coded adventure in the Infocom tradition, distinguished by some very entertaining puzzles. The plot is nothing terribly involving -- the player character is a student desperately trying to make his (her?) way back to the modern day -- but that's not really the focus of this offering. Instead, it's the series of challenges facing the player that are responsible for keeping the interest level high, and fortunately, they succeed at this task quite admirably.
-- Mike Russo
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>VERBOSE -- Paul O'Brian's Interactive Fiction Page
From what I saw of this game, I thought it was outstanding, worthy of a 9.5 or above. But I just cannot bring myself to give it that score, if for no other reason than because I don't want games that shouldn't be in the comp to do well, since all that will do is encourage more of them. On the other hand, can I really justify giving a low score to such an obviously high-quality product, especially when I've already given Scavenger, another too-big game, a high score? Well, the difference between this and Scavenger is that with Scavenger, I felt like I'd seen the majority of the game, that the major puzzles were solved or almost-solved, and that most of what remained was denouement. With RR, though, I felt like I'd eaten the appetizer but had to leave before the entree. My compromise is this. I'll make it clear in my review that this is a great game, worthy of any IF devotee's attention. Play it sometime when you can really enjoy it, linger over its many pleasures, and let the puzzles percolate in your head. Play it without a time limit. Savor it like I couldn't today. Don't let my low score fool you -- it's eminently worth playing, but I saw a third of it, and so I'm giving it a third of the score it probably would have gotten from me had it been the right size for the comp.
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Number of Reviews: 6
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Most Helpful Member Reviews
'Risorgimento Represso' placed second behind 'Slouching Towards Bedlam' in the 2003 IF Comp, and, if you ask me, Mr. Coyne deserved the top spot.
You start this game in a boring college classroom. Then, you discover an interdimensional vortex under the seats. Why is it there? Because it is.
The lack of finesse in this opening is almost comical. What seems at first like bad writing instead ends up being a signal that this is an "old school" game. You go through the vortex for the same reason you break into the white house in 'Zork' -- because it's your gateway to the quest that awaits. How else were you going to get there?
With this opening, 'Risorgimento Represso' proudly proclaims that it is a classic text adventure, through and through. If you don't like those, you can't say you weren't warned. If you do like them, you're in for a treat.
This game emulates the archetypal Infocom aesthetic: a blend of witty writing, solid puzzles, and fun (if stereotypical) NPCs. It eschews the modern "cruelty vs. kindness" debate and reminds you why the save and restore commands were implemented in the first place.
What most impressed me about this game was the way that it managed to retain its own voice while being so obviously inspired by the best of what came before. Sure, it has magic. It has monsters. It has heroes and villains. But it also has great flair for memorable moments -- like your grudge match with a very determined bird and your introduction to tyromancy. If the fantasy adventure genre is a choir, 'Risorgimento Represso' clearly adds its own notes instead of simply following along with the tune.
My congratulations to Mr. Coyne for introducing us to a compelling new universe. I understand he's working on a sequel, and I can't wait to play it.
(Well, it actually plays out as much around the city as in it, but I have my reasons...)
First things first: It has a cannon! -Hmm?.. Yes, I'll wait...
Now, Risorgimento Represso is a very good puzzler. Because the main puzzles center around the same theme, completing the first (silly) task before you is one big trial run to prepare you for what's to come. It gets you comfortable with the feel and humorous tone of the game. It also teaches you what details to look for and trains you in the specific puzzle-solving mindset you need for the game.
All the puzzles are well thought-out and in-game logical; on top of that, you might pop an eyeball or two laughing while solving them.
Storywise, Risorgimento makes fantastic use of the Wizard's Apprentice-trope. The whole concept gets the player and the PC on a shared learning curve, facing the same obstacles, and scratching their heads at the same times. I found this really heightened my involvement with my character and with the story.
There's a great build-up of tension, from playful exploration and experimentation to seriously hard thinking about how to save your Master. That's a good learning curve Ónd a good immersion curve for you!
So, go shoot that cannon, those of you who haven't done so already; and don't smell the paint thinner, it's bad for you.
This is a very large game that you could spend a long time playing. It is slightly shorter than Curses!, and about half as long as Muldoon Legacy.
You play a college student who is immediately sucked into another world, where a renegade befuddled wizard is asking for your help.
The game has a tower that gets bigger and bigger and more complicated as you discover a huge number of chemical ingredients. Then you realize you have only seen less than half of the game. The game is so big, there are 65 AMUSING options at the end.
It has copious hints, and great world details. But it was too hard for me; I just went through the walkthrough. You could play it for a long, long time without hints and still have fun.
If you liked Mulldoon Legacy, you will like this.
See All 9 Member Reviews
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