ShuffleComp Reviews Collection Thread

I will post tweet-sized reviews at this user

Super! When are you starting?

I know MTW wrote at least one review, for When the Land Goes Under the Water. I might manage a few reviews, but the first one’s taking a while.

ETA: Hold the presses, I just posted my first review! It’s of False Mavis and you can read it here. Honestly I think it comes out rather disjointed because I procrastinated like a bandit on it, but hey, it’s finished.

Some reviews are showing up at IFDB. … views%3A1-

I wrote a short capsule review for Molly and the Butter Thieves over on my blog. All of my reviews there from now on will be posted under the shufflecomp tag.

I’ll be putting some short reviews up here:

Two so far: a nice pairing of When the Land Goes Under the Water and Submerge.

I’ve reviewed Ansible at some length, since that game is both interesting enough and non-pseudonymous.

I’ve covered some of my favorites here.

A tangential comment on Sequitur’s review of Ansible:

Technically, I think the term “time cave” connotes not just a branching narrative that is a pure tree structure (no state or merging nodes) but also that each branch is a substantially different part of the story, perhaps even a different genre or an incompatible parallel world. In Ansible there is one well-defined situation, whose resolution is determined by your choices. Also there’s only three “winning” endings, and most non-winning endings end as soon as you make the wrong choice. Using Sam Ashwell’s terminology, I’d say it’s much closer to a Gauntlet.

A fair point, but I feel like “time cave” is a better descriptor because Ansible has no merges, only a pure tree structure. It also has some branches which do develop a fair bit (For several nodes) before ending in death. So to me it seemed more like an exceedingly deadly time cave, rather than a broader-than-usual gauntlet, but obviously that’s a hair-splitting distinction to make.

More to the point, however, I felt like it suggested a time cave structure even if it wasn’t a “true” time cave, which created some tension for me because I expected to be able to find branches that led to completely different stories, even though there is only one main path.

Not having played Ansible: the term ‘time cave’ was intended as a mainly structural definition. It tends to lead to branches with very different situations, but that’s not a defining feature any more than Crazy Uncle House is a defining feature or parser IF. At least, as I envisaged it.

Fair enough. I guess I was reading too much into the name, which evokes a cave with tunnels that exit into different time periods (which was the conceit of The Cave of Time).

I still think that structurally Ansible is closer to a Gauntlet, given how so many wrong choices are insta-death and there’s only really one situation to be navigated (with three ways to survive). But I will concede that it gives the illusion of a Time Cave.

Here are a few more short reviews: To Spring Open and The Skeleton Key of Ambady

One last couple of Shufflecomp reviews for the road. (May contain spoilers for When the Land Goes Under the Water and Everything We Do is Games.)

Just under the wire, I’ve posted reviews on IFDB of my three favorite games in the comp: Heading East, Starry Seeksorrow, and When the Land Goes Under the Water. (That link will include other reviews I may write if I get a chance.) I was fortunate to be a playtester for both Heading East and When the Land Goes Under the Water, but I enjoyed both games before any revisions were made based on my feedback, so I can’t take credit for their excellence!