In general, I like it too. I haven’t finished – I’m stuck trying to figure out
how to attach the blades to my moccasins
– but I think I’ve played enough to get the concept. It’s very pretty, plays at a nice speed in browser, and communicates affordances well, all good stuff. At least to me, it still feels like IF, in the sense of having a rich explorable setting and complex world model with lots to do. Some hyperlinked text games have pared things back enough that they engage me in a more readerly, less YOU ARE THERE way. Both are okay, but I’m especially keen to be able to present an IF-like experience in a more accessible way. So hooray for that.
Also, this isn’t what you asked about, but I’m enjoying discovering by exploration the rather surprising magic/religion of this world.
Possible mild drawbacks:
I found myself looking from the top to the bottom of the screen and back a lot. I wonder whether the top of the screen is the best place for inventory. This kind of split attention problem has been an issue with pretty much every deluxe IF interface I’ve ever seen/worked on, so it’s hardly unique to yours.
I also did get a little frustrated with the two-click method of manipulating objects when
I was trying out various rune combinations and had to keep clicking to select a rune, lay it down, see whether anything happened, select that rune again, pick it up, select another rune, lay it down…
…as that was something that I felt I could have done much more quickly by typing. I wonder whether it would be worthwhile to have the option of a custom mechanic when dealing with game elements that are going to involve repetitive uses of similar objects. For instance, one might have a hand of cards and a display that allowed you to click them each once to play…? It was much less polished overall in terms of graphical design, but I recall that Stark Springs’ “Words of Power” had a similar interface feature to allow the player to assemble spellcasting components.