IFReviewed by Emily Short on 2006-08-01 08:33
This game has convinced me that relative directions are a Mistake in IF. I
appreciate the experiment, and I think the effect is interesting -- but what
resulted, for me, was rapid and complete confusion about what the map as a whole
looked like. Compass directions help (me, at least) construct an overall sense
of the map's shape. Here... I was at a loss.
The more I played, interestingly, the less this bothered me. Maybe it's a
learning curve issue. I think I still like my absolute directions, though.
The writing is a bit overdone in spots.
But the good points: the game is quite effectively creepy, herding you from one
untoward discovery to another. I quit playing it the first time because I didn't
want to deal with the imagery of dark things with claws right then. The moment
where I reached for the hunk of lamb was really quite nauseating. (If anyone
thinks of Art Show as meaning "pretty things", they need to think again.)
Also excellent are the complex ways in which descriptions change, based on what
I have seen and learned so far. Unidentified glimmers and lights give way to
definite objects. The setting is quite effectively deployed for the story it has
I've never felt more certain that I was about to be eaten by a grue.
This was my preference for Best of Landscape.