IFComp 2015: The Speaker   1 comment

By Naomi “Norbez”. Played to completion three times using Firefox.


In The Speaker, you are human (Riviera) helping an alien (a “Satunian” named A. A. Arthur, AA for short) write responses to questions on his blog.

This could have been sort of a riff on My Dinner With Andre with an alien concept (if you’re unfamiliar with the movie, it involves a long philosophical dinner conversation … and that’s it). There are certainly vibes the story could go that way, but it gets undermined by:

a.) Being too short. I normally don’t like leveling this criticism — I have found some one-paragraph short stories to be brilliant — but here the premise never really had a chance to pay off. There are two questions the alien answers and you can choose to type what he wants or not. There’s no chance for the relationship to develop. (There’s another relationship story including, woot, a knitted scarf, but I didn’t find it nearly as interesting as the relationship between Riviera and AA.)

b.) Having facile philosophical content. I especially groaned at the bit where random gibberish (“erbqergfqgoinoiqrpgnqrgia”) somehow represented the profundity of infinity. Philosophical arguments can start with naive notions so I assumed the story would just develop from there, but it instead settles on “yep, that’s profound” and rests its case.

“They hate your gibberish, Riviera.” It seems the laughing will never stop. “They hate our infinity.”

I do worry I’m missing something because the file size seems rather large for the content I saw. If there’s some extensive plot branches I missed, I would appreciate a ping about it. Otherwise The Speaker needs more substance to be a satisfying game.

Posted November 3, 2015 by Jason Dyer in Interactive Fiction

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  1. Pingback: IFComp 2015 Summary | Renga in Blue

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