IFReviewed by Andrew Plotkin on 2006-06-25 08:54
This game goes straight for the surreal side. It's entirely abstract; the story is dream-quest for purification, and everything that happens is part of that dream logic. You encounter a sequence of tiny scenes, each with some allegorical action to perform.
This works quite well, in spite of -- or more likely because of -- its simplicity. There aren't many things to do (no objects, just a handful of spells that you come across) so I didn't get stuck trying to find actions, even when the action was a little obscure. It really is feasible to try everything, in other words.
The spelling is shaky and the language is rather goofy and overblown. (I felt like I was reading amateur death metal lyrics. The author quoted Poe in the section epigrams, and it's so hard to stand next to Poe...) But the idea got across anyway.
I'm sort of ambivalent about the story... on one hand, I like the idea of this self-contained vision, with no frame of "the real world". On another hand, there isn't quite enough forward momentum in the beginning. The first part of the game is going down a checklist, effectively. The spells you pick up figure in the second half, which has a reasonably solid progression.
A few other characters, mostly single-action IF mannequins. There is one which I enjoyed interacting with, though.