OK, people, ECTOCOMP needs some attention. I know you’re all feeling very full of IF as IFComp draws to a close, but please don’t let the ECTOCOMP authors down. We need you to get us to a respectable amount of ratings that aren’t just all of us rating each other. There are some amazing games by stellar authors there, so please make an effort to play and rate just a few of them over the coming week. Surely playing a Grand Guignol game and an itty-bitty Petite Mort game is a reasonable goal for most of you this week.

Last year’s winning game, by no less a personage than Ryan Veeder, only had 12 ratings! You’d think a long, fabulous Veeder game would draw more players. Can we show this year’s authors a little more love?


Not to wear out my welcome, but I should point out that the amounts of ratings are very skewed. Please refer to this page to see what entries are sorely in need of ratings.


Hi Amanda—I’ve been swamped for reasons no one wants to hear about, but will make the effort!


My motto is: “If you don’t have anything nice to say, come sit by me.”

To pimp this comp further, I have a story. Alert readers will know already that my husband is NOT an IF fan. At all. There’s a game in this comp that I made him play, because I keep trying. And he played it, put his head on the table, wept, and then said, “Does this author have any more games?”

That’s the kind of game you will find in this comp.


I’ll be along in (checks watch) 25 hours, once I get through all the IFComp reviews I can.

I’m constantly reminded of how stuff like this,whicht I’d really like to do (judge and review,) is supplanted by silly distractions even when I know they are silly distractions!

I’ve managed to fit in time to judge a small game here and there and also submit stuff to IFDB. But it’s hard! Still, I know when I take the time, it feels good.


I’m going to see if I can get through some, health permitting. No guarantees, and I won’t be posting reviews. But seeing what I can manage.


To help people pick a Grand Guignol Game, I’ve categorized them. If you only have time for one or two, you can pick your poison from this list.

Dark and Disturbing:
Gothic: The Trials & Tribulations of Edward Harcourt
Mysterious adventure: The Sun Doesn’t Shine Here
Sci-fi: Defrosted
Historical: The Spectators
Natural Disaster: You’re In Deep
Exploration: Nowheresville
Creepy cult: God Is in the Radio

Word Play: Civil Seeming Drivel Dreaming
Puzzlefest: Escape from Hell
Parody: This Old Haunted House and The Haunted Help Desk

The Good Ghost

Alternative reality:
A Pumpkin?

Social Commentary:
Euphoria Brighter Than a Comet

Shoot ‘em up:
Zombie Blast 2023


***Edit: If you don’t like my categorization of your game, just let me know and I’ll change it to one you’re happier with.


As anyone will tell you, an author needs only to tag something with “sci-fi”, and I’ll start skittering around it, inspecting it like some strange insect.

Ahahahahaha, what??

Okay, I do have a heavy bias against the use of zombies as a narrative element, but I gotta know how an IF title got the “shoot 'em up” tag. I think I’ll just pack my bias away for a moment, and see what happens here. I don’t wanna be the person who shows up with a spear already in hand.

Consider this adequately pimped.

I can’t guarantee I’ll finish what I try, because I’m actually really terrible at playing IF lol.


I’m not used to using Itchio.

Do I also put my review in a comment after leaving a star rating, or would it be better to post the written review here…? I’ve never participated in a comp before.


You can leave a review in the submission page (where you leave a star). Saving your rating is independent of your review. You can also leave your review on the game page (where you play the game, if it embeded).
Most if not all entries have also an IFBD page, if you want to leave a review there. Or create a thread in the Forum like other reviewers have done.


It’s up to you.

I usually recommend the following: if you have constructive feedback, probably criticism or negative feedback, you can either put the review here to at the competition section for the game (the same one where you can rate the game).

If your opinion is favorable, or high praise, you can comment in the very comment section of the game’s main itchio page so that other players can see your glowing review. Alternatively, you can paste your review/recommendation here, and at IFDB :wink:


One thing I would add is that reviews are really great to see, but optional. What we need most are ratings for the competition entries. So if folks are short on time don’t worry about whether you can write a review, but just play what you can and record the rating on the competition page for that game.

I managed 4 games this morning and hope to get through more tomorrow.


Amen to that. I’m currently hung up on a review and in the time I’ve spent trying to start it I could have easily played another game.

Also, you can always come back and write a review later (which is likely what I’m going to switch to doing). There’s no deadline on those, unlike with ratings!


This is really helpful … sometimes I’m in the mood for something funny and sometimes I’m not. And I want to be in the best mood I can be for an entry.

As a participant, I prefer seeing reviews here or on IFDB, but I also really appreciate comments such as “I did X and Y and saw bug Z.” They can be checked off most easily. It can be awkward to put “oh hey I liked this game but I saw this really minor issue” in a review. (Another way is to collapse trivial stuff into (details) / (/details).)


I’m on the Itch page camp (esp the game page :stuck_out_tongue: ), but that’s probably because I’m more used to it (and it tends help with traffic).


I’ve been there too! I generally have a list of basic ideas for reviews, and if anything catches fire, I post it. It’s tough to walk away and say “oh gosh I didn’t have as much to say as I thought I did,” but yeah, a lot of times I let that get in the way.

Sometimes it winds up that I charge through 4 games and need a break and a review is the perfect way to get one, though!

I hadn’t thought of the traffic angle. I still have trouble navigating for that. I’d like to do more, whether it’s just browse other games or whatever. It’s fun reading a lot of comments on a popular game and being able to participate on threads. The only IFComp game I’ve seen get traction is 4x4 Archipelago–and that was neat to see what others saw. But sometimes I feel like I’d just largely be at itch for the popularity–I mean, we all are, but I’d like to be able to contribute in some meaningful way.

With github it was really easy to create an email filter to say “Okay, if someone does anything in my repos, sort this into the high priority folder.” But I assume it’d be easy enough to add a filter so “if COMMENT in subject and mail is from itch, send it to the high priority folder, too.” (Also, I’m more used to github than itch. But it seems well worth it to spend more time on itch.)


Only 2 days left to rate games! We’re not far from 500 ratings. You don’t need to write reviews or play all the games. If just 17 people played just 2 games, we’d hit 500 by end of comp.


We’re at 499 right now, so whoever posts the next rating will get to be the 500th! I wish it could be me but I’ve been playing ECTOCOMP games all night and need to pause to reset my brain.


I’ve woken up with a cold this morning so I think it’s the perfect time to try to race through as many petite morts as I can and because I have a bad habit of streaming myself doing stupid petite mort related things I think I’ll stream it. Depending on whether my throat plays ball I should be on from about 2-6pm GMT if anyone wants to watch :slight_smile:


Well, you may’ve missed 500, but you now have an outside shot at being vote #600 now from the looks of things (I will still be voting). Uunless you were part of the vote dump that got us close to 540, which is 15 reviews per game.