IFReviewed by Jacqueline A. Lott on 2006-07-21 08:07
Internal Vigilance seems to be a police thriller inspired by modern events and the growing fear among many that we are losing too many of our civil liberties in the fight against terrorism.
I found the piece to be well thought out and, for the most part, well coded and tested, but I found the experience awkward and convoluted at times, and unnecessarily so. For instance, in one portion of the game, rather than having a case file in hand, you find yourself having to go up and down an elevator between your office and the basement; the prisoner you're interrogating is in the basement, but the case file is on the computer in your office, and you can't *read* the entire case file because it's so long - you have to provide individual topics to look up in the computer file. So it's a game of read as much as you can think of on the computer, then go down the hall twice and into the elevator and down to the basement and exhaust your interview options with the prisoner there and then go back in the elevator and up to your floor and down the hall twice and into your office so that you can look up the new topics you encountered during the interrogation and then maybe you'll need more information from the prisoner after reading the file and so you'll have to go back into the hall and down the hall twice and into the elevator and, well, you get the picture.
It seems as if this entry had a few beta testers and, while not perfect, was fairly well polished on a coding level, so I was surprized to find a consistent error in failing to capitalize the word 'I,' as well as other occasional grammatical errors; these were distracting and degraded my experience.
I did not play through to the end. I eventually encountered a puzzle in which I'd dropped my car keys and, despite searching my two-room (no bathroom) apartment, my car, and my clothing, I couldn't find them. I wish it were not the case, but in real life I misplace my keys inside my house almost every day, so this puzzle's 'novelty' is lost on me, I'm afraid. The hints system was no help on the issue, and, well, a gee-you-lost-your-keys-so-you-can't-go-to-work puzzle in the middle of what until now seemed to be a statement on the degradation of our civil rights seemed annoyingly inappropriate.