IFComp 2016: Stone Harbor, by Liza Daly

Third game of fifty-something. More or less on track, although I should pick up the pace. Might have to forego this week’s Bibble Wibble at this rate.

Blurb: You’re good at what you do: tell tourists pretty lies about love, money, and life after death. That’s what people want from a boardwalk psychic, and you deliver. It’s not the future you imagined for yourself, though, and sometimes you think you’re waiting for your real life to start. That wait ends today.
The curtain is opening, and it’s got something it needs you to see.

System: Uncredited, possibly homebrew (HTML)

Pretty linear. Ran into one small bug and a handful of typos. All in all there are few ways to influence the story and no substantive ways, which leads one to wonder why this qualifies as IF; yes, there’s a certain amount of agency involved in clicking the links to call up the next block of text, but thats a pretty minimal level of agency.

In every respect except for the structural design, though, this is a good work. It would make a fantastic second-person novella. It’s well-written and exciting. But it’s only very minimally what I think of as IF. Coming up with a good rating for something like this is hard for that reason: it succeeds very well at its apparent purposes but those purposes do not seem to be directed towards the creation of a work I’m comfortable labeling as exemplary IF.

Rating: 7 (I guess?)

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

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