IFComp 2012: Transit, by Shaye

Twenty-three games. Eight days. I should maybe go a bit faster if I plan to blitz through the judging for the Eighteenth Annual Interactive Fiction Competition. As always, if you’re a judge, don’t read on unless you have already played and reviewed the game yourself, and if your averse to spoilers, you won’t want to read this even if you aren’t judging.

Blurb: Find your way through a foreign airport in search of your friend, understanding or just a safe flight home.

Well, it’s in the same authoring system as The Lift. Needless to say, it’s longer and better-written, although it’s not error-free, with a few spelling and word-choice errors and a couple serious state-management problems, with choices I make sometimes taking me back to previous parts of the story where I can’t make new choices (i.e., revisiting a previously visited scrolls the screen up, instead of giving me a new visitation of that location. The main problem I saw, thoguh, was structural: almost all the choices you make in this story are pure padding, though, and eventually no matter what you do in the first part you face the same situation in the latter part. This isn’t in itself necessarily bad: decisions made early could have an emotional or thematic significance even if they have no gameplay significance, but these really don’t seem to. In the end, there’s one specific encounter you have, and doing what any sensible person would do is the right answer, except when it isn’t. So I’m not terribly impressed: there’s very little to really grab my attention in terms of writing, technical aspects, or design.

Rating: 3


About Jake
I'm a mathematics professor at the University of Louisville, and a geek.

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