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3.5 out of 5 (2 reviews)  

- Ectocomp 2010 -

An Adrift 3-hour comp for Hallowe’en!

  • All Hallows Eve by Alvin Echeverria
  • The Fly Human by Hensman Int’l
  • Pete’s Punkin Junkinator by DCBSupafly
  • Tenebrae Semper by Seciden Mencarde
  • Steve Van Helsing: Process Server by Mel Stefaniuk
  • The Vault by BlueMaxima
  • I Was a Teenage Headless Experiment by Duncan Bowsman
  • Renegade Brainwave by J. J. Guest

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    Genre: Fiction 
    Language: Unknown 
    IFID: Unknown 
    Category: Competition Entrants 
    Forgiveness rating: Merciful 
    Total Downloads: 400 
    File Size: 60 Kb 
    Version: Unknown

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    1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
      An excellent compilation of quick games, Thu 4th Aug 2011
    By - See all my reviews

    This year, I've decided to associate a song by Rush with each game along with its score.

    All Hallows Eve | Alvin Echeverria |
    SCORE: 6 zombie ninja cats out of 10.
    Song: "Finding My Way"
    Comments: -Lots of pauses, long intro
    -Room descriptions make implementation easy to sort
    -The writing is funny
    -Pausing in every room description really interrupts
    the flow of gameplay
    -Lots of empty space in descriptions... why?
    -Characters don't have synonyms?
    -No hints/help.
    -"ask old lady coot about witch"-- interesting.
    -"splash water into cauldron"-- SPLASH is an
    uncommon verb and there is no cauldron at
    Old Lady Coot's, where I did that.
    -Wouldn't have put the cauldron on the tall grass,
    as that made it invisible until the grass was
    looked at.
    -I had no idea I had to pick up the small cauldron--
    that would have gone well in the potion book's
    -Task construction really could have used wildcards
    -TO THROW LOVE POTION: (must be executable in room),
    must be held by player and in small cauldron--
    so, must be in cauldron, player must hold cauldron--
    a bit odd.
    -Finishing with just the game after just doing the bare
    minimum (making the potion, getting candy from the
    witch) gives the player a 42% completion. The
    alternate solution provides 65% completion by itself.
    Well, who cares about score, anyway?

    The Fly Human | Hensman Int'l |
    SCORE: 7 mutated fruit flies out of 10.
    Song: "The Twilight Zone"
    Comments: -No hints.
    -Misleading "I can't go in any direction!" messages.
    PASSENGER'S WINDOW (object's name in room
    description) doesn't.
    -The task "eat blood/meat/gore" is implemented incorrectly,
    so it only works if the player actually types
    "blood/meat/gore" rather than "blood" or "meat"
    or "gore".
    -The twist at the end-- where the fly becomes a human
    and the human a fly-- was really cool. I felt
    like it could have used some more time on it,
    pacing-wise, as the whole thing seemed to be in
    summary when I really wanted to WATCH this thing
    happen. But the time restrictions are likely the
    culprit here!
    -Would have liked for this to have a formal ending
    rather than just waiting for the player to quit.

    Pete's Punkin Junkinator | DCBSupafly |
    SCORE: 8 Jack o' lanterns out of 10.
    Song: "The Working Man"
    Comments: -Fun!
    -I didn't think to >DIG at first, given I couldn't
    see anything implemented (like graves) to dig up,
    but the form of the shovel suggests the verb well
    enough that I got it without checking for hints
    or anything of the sort. A victory for semiotically
    smart writing!
    -Impossible to get best score since player "wins"
    after the fourth punkin.
    -I'm glad its possible to play through without doing
    any gratuitous violence to animals (killing
    the bat and the newt).
    -No hints.

    Tenebrae Semper | Seciden Mencarde |
    SCORE: 4 shadows out of 10.
    Song: "Subdivisions"
    Comments: -No hints.
    -I assume I'm supposed to wait for class to start
    at 12:30? Unfortunately, the clock is broken
    so time is stuck between 12:00 and 12:09.
    -Being stuck in a time bubble with no clear idea
    of what to do, no escape, and only a college
    algebra textbook is suitable enough for horror,
    but unfortunately the game just feels incomplete.
    -Apparently one must only sit on a chair to escape that.
    -The author requested a transcript from me, which contains
    most of my complaints about the game. In all, it
    should be considered more an open beta than a finished
    work. Players be warned. Below are some of the most
    salient issues...
    -It's possible to get stuck in one's dorm after returning
    to it (don't have all of your things).
    -Inventory limit is far too small.
    -Science Hall and the later Forest Path are inaccessible as
    it stands (Science Hall cannot be gotten back to after
    returning with the notebook).
    -The writing is all abstract and overly cryptic, which makes
    it hard to understand what exactly is going on. Lack
    of understanding of conflicts, motivations, and general
    reasoning of things in some places makes it hard for
    the writing as it stands to be very compelling.

    Steve Van Helsing: Process Server | Mel Stefaniuk |
    SCORE: 9 wackily subverted monster stereotypes out of 10.
    Song: "Tom Sawyer"
    Comments: -Long intro makes it somewhat tough to start up.
    -Very funny.
    -Incredible implementation for a Speed-IF. It was
    hard to find objects mentioned that weren't

    The Vault | BlueMaxima |
    SCORE: 5 nuclear wastelands out of 10.
    Song: "Red Sector A"
    Comments: -Bible should be capitalized (and italicized)
    -Can't read the Bible initially, yet it is necessary
    to do that for one solution!
    -No hints.
    -Wreckage should have had synonym "pile"
    -Conversation subjects with Peter should not have
    ()s in them or else they won't trigger unless
    the player specifically includes them.
    -Didn't seem right to call the body and pile of
    wreckage containers. Did this man swallow his
    ID card?
    -Seemed like the best ending was getting into Heaven,
    not getting into the Vault.
    -Player can get into Heaven even after committing
    suicide. All possibility I could be wrong,
    but shouldn't this not be possible?
    -Code could have used wildcards and #s.
    -Overall, this felt rhetorically ineffective.

    I Was a Teenage Headless Experiment | Duncan Bowsman |
    SCORE: X
    Song: "Bastille Day"
    Comments: -I was the author of this game, and won't rate it.

    Renegade Brainwave | J. J. Guest |
    SCORE: 9 Tesla coils out of 10.
    Song: "2112 Overture"
    Comments: -Really fun writing, a spot-on, over-the-top, sci-fi
    B-movie spoof. If you don't imagine either Bela
    Lugosi or The Amazing Criswell delivering the
    opening and closing sections of this game...
    you've been deprived.
    -Had some trouble taking the cigar from the gorilla
    for some reason, but it worked after some time
    (also for a reason I can't suss out). I assume
    I must have been doing something wrong somehow?
    -No hints.

    0 of 0 people found the following review helpful:
      Disappointing and annoying, Wed 24th Aug 2011
    By David Whyld - See all my reviews

    "All Hallows Eve" by Albaniua

    After an introduction that looked like it may never end – did I really count eight separate screen clearings or do I just think I did? – the game finally begins. You're out trick and treating, dressed up as a zombie ninja cat (as you do) and an old witch turns you into an actual zombie ninja cat. But she's clearly not all bad because if you find her some candy before midnight, she’ll turn you back to your human form.

    From annoying pauses in location descriptions (seriously, they grow tiresome *very* quickly) to huge gaps between lines of text (most location descriptions were nothing more than half a dozen lines long but due to the weird line spacing would often take up a full screen) to typos, grammatical errors and capitals not being used where they should, this was a pain to play. It bore all the hallmarks of a game written by a first timer and is the kind of thing I keep hoping ADRIFT left behind years ago. While I can appreciate it was written under strict time constraints (three hours), it’s still a hard game to find anything positive to say about, and most of what's wrong with it – the pauses and weird line spacing being at the top of the list – would be irritating in any game.

    1 out of 5

    "Tenebrae Semper" by Seciden Mencarde

    This began with a frustrating little puzzle that prevented me leaving the start location until I had all my stuff, while quietly remaining silent on exactly what I needed to take with me. It was a puzzle made worse by ADRIFT’s buggy item carrying limits that prevented me picking up certain things – like a pen – because my hands are full. Oh, and if you pick up a pen, then drop it (as I did when experimenting with what items were necessary), you can’t pick the pen up again. Nasty “puzzle”. I ran into the same problem later on in the game when I returned to the room and then was prevented from leaving because one of the required items was no longer in my possession.

    There were other annoyances – items listed in the room description not being examinable, typos, misleading exit messages, guess the verb and the like – but it’s easier to forgive these considering the three hour time constraint imposed by the comp. Nicely written, too, which was an added bonus.

    Unfortunately, I couldn't figure out most of the time what I was meant to be doing. Even with the Generator open and actively cheating, it was difficult to guess what my next move should be and often I’d be left stranded in one location with no idea of what I was meant to do next. On the occasions when I did manage to make progress, this was usually done after trying every single thing I could think of doing. Not so much solving a puzzle as hitting upon the solution by sheer persistence.

    Overall this seemed a little too ambitious for a three hour camp and the rough edges really showed.

    2 out of 5

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