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About the Story
Inspired by 1950s London true crime cases, De Novo is set during an era where capital punishment is still in practice, players are given the power to decide fate on who lives and who dies.
63rd Place - 25th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition (2019)
Number of Reviews: 1
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The programmers and artists did a great job on this game. We have a smooth interface with lush, hand-drawn designs.
The story is not really salvageable, though. You play a judge in death-penalty-era England, and you are asked to review death row cases. The following facts are true in this game:
-You can only appeal one case
-The ones you don't appeal are executed
-You have no choice about these rules
-Your wife acts like you are killing people
-The people you free (Spoiler - click to show)are sent back so that all but 1 die.
So much of this doesn't make sense. And the text is very trope-y and short, almost like a distilled ideal version of truth. The entire courtroom transcript is boiled down to two paragraphs, including "The defendant said 'I didn't do it!'".
The tension with your spouse is not reasonable. These people were all going to die. Your job lets you save at most one. If you didn't do your job, they would all die. So you're literally doing the opposite of what she says; you're not killing anyone at all.
I think games focused on political issues can be amazing, but I feel like this one doesn't quite reach the goal its hitting at. Love the interface, though.