Rovarsson goes ParserComping

Oh well…

I know, I know,… I said I was going to wait until after my hiking-and-camping vacation, but…

There’s still a day of family visiting tomorrow, and a day of tetrising our camping materials into the trunk. Might as well get started on this Parsery Plate of Goodness that is right in front of me.

And it does seem like a nice batch of games.
-Larry Horsfield triple-represents ADRIFT. I look forward to diving into his oldschool text-adventures. David Whyld reinforces that with a fourth ADRIFT entry. Both are IF authors whose works I enjoy very much.
-There are some works by writers I know from previous games and competitions (and this forum), and some I have never heard about. I’m very interested if the veterans can hold their ground against the new enthusiasts.
-And there are quite a few entries in the Freestyle category. It should be interesting to see how the novelty<->parser equation holds up.

Of course I wouldn’t be starting this thread without having played at least one game…

  • The Last Mountain

A touching story about loyalty and ambition. A parser which grants the player some freedom of X and TALK, but ultimately forces you to run forward through competition- , and possibly life- , changing choices.

Despite recounting the final stretch of a 24-hour run, the exhaustion or exhilaration of the PC didn’t really come through in the path I took through the game. The feeble state of the NPC did compensate somewhat, but I never felt truly engaged in the enormous toll it must take on a human body and mind to perform such a physical effort.

I experienced The Last Mountain mostly as a vignette about a glimpse of friendship in hard times. The emotionally touching ending I reached confirmed that in a bittersweet way.

Short and to-the-point, to the point that I thought it might have been a bit longer and diving deeper into the PC’s psyche.

Good story.

(Must -read about ultrarunning: Born to Run - Christopher McDougall . About the author’s own experiences with long-distance running, his search for the Tarahumara tribe who are awesome in the ease with which they run dozens of miles, and the evolutionary “perseverance running”-hypothesis for the two-legged stance of humans. (It’s still sketchy scientifically, but it does make for a great story…))


I’ve read Born to Run! I thought it was fascinating!


There is some point where I can’t go on. I don’t know if this is an issue or I have missed something.

I can’t go down through the steeped rocky steps even when I take my poles. Susan don’t want to advance even when she has got his own poles.

1 Like

Thanks so much for your great review!


If you’re on the path I think you’re on…

You need to help Susan before she can get down.

  • Late-Imperial Sky Witches Star In: Meet Cute

First off: great title! Vague but evocative, got me curious right off the bat.
The game itself presented itself to me as an invitingly mysterious starting scenario for a complex interrogation/conversation puzzle, with some hints at a mechanical/technomagical puzzlebox later on. Intruiging stuff.

Unfortunately, it seems LISWSI:MC makes good on its subtitle, “A Doomed Conversation” in a literal way. I found a number of pathways to navigate the conversation and make the game do various things, but I banged into a wall on each playthrough where my interrogation is cut short.

Promising, but perhaps more suited for IntroComp. Unless I am missing something, some way to progress further? ( Hint request: Late-Imperial Sky Witches )

  • Hinterlands: Delivered!

How great to revisit the Hinterlands, the scrubby backalleys of the Galaxy. This time we land on a decidedly western-feeling planet. In our search to find fuel for our spaceship, we land in a hornet’s nest of criminal machinations and counterespionage…

I had a lot of fun with my playthrough. There are many colourful characters to talk to, each eager to gossip about their neighbours and help you with needed information (for a price, of course). The game has an oldschool straightforward feel, explore and solve puzzles, complete fetch-quests,… I like it.

The main throughline is nicely worked out, with a nice set of puzzles and revelations. Though…, the inquisitive player who goes scratching the paint in the corners will notice that another layer of polish and varnish could be added.

The game struggles a bit with its choice of tone. There’s a noticeable inconsistency in atmosphere between the investigation into the town’s darker secrets on the one hand and the comedic characters and situations on the other. Nothing really off-putting, but these aspects could be more balanced and integrated.

Overall, a good game to spend some time in a Space-Western bordertown.