IFReviewed by James Mitchelhi
on 2006-10-16 05:42
The first question that needs to be asked is why the author feels the need to tell us all about the plot of the game in the PDF file he includes. I'd far prefer to judge a game on its own merits. If there are multiple endings, feel free to tell me about them after I've played through the game once. The fact that the PC is an antihero should be discovered through the game, not because of a note the author writes about the game.
And that's the problem. A character doesn't have to be nice to be interesting. I don't have to sympathise with someone to empathise with them. In this game, though, the characters are neither sympathetic nor interesting. They proceed through the game like cardboard cut-outs. And, because the game is puzzleless there's really no point to reading the text. In fact, interactivity is so limited in the game that it's almost like one huge CYOA with sparse choices throughout long text.
A near static story like this can be interesting, but as others have noted, it's often like being strapped down in a chair and the author screaming the plot into your face. And this is worse if the game is boring. And there's nothing interesting going on here. The author does his best, telling scenes out of time and switching from one genre to another, but in the end I never cared about anyone involved and couldn't give a damn about whether they lived or died.
I'm sure the author thinks he's being clever and edgy. Every writer probably goes through a phase when they have to experiment with these kinds of plots. Unfortunately, Mortality must be consigned to the million words of crap every author writes before they get to the good stuff. The writing is not particularly polished, either. I spotted a couple of spelling errors and the author needs to memorise the maxim "show, don't tell" (not that it's a hard or fast rule, but knowing when to break it is important). A little more subtlety would be nice, too.