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Cruisin Reviews
Author: Stark
Date: 1990
TADS


What does AIF stand for? Adult Interactive Fiction. If you likely to be offended by games with sexual content, you are advised not
to open these files.


Reviewed by Kastier

Plot synopsis:
The plot of Cruisin is simple enough.  You're sitting in your car at a drive-in with Debbie, your date, and are hoping to get lucky before the night is through.

Writing + Plot:
The plot is as simple as in most AIF games, "Get the girl to have sex with you."

As for writing, there isn't much writing there.  The description of Debbie is probably the longest chunk of text in the entire game, and it contains phrases 
like, "a real nice pair of boobs."

The sex scenes are even worse, with the player having to type "f--- *****" ten times to get a series of unexciting four word sentences like, "Oh, that feels 
good!"  Once climax arrives, it's actually a let down because the moment of bliss is described in much the same way.  If real sex were that way... oh 
wait... hmmm.

On the bright side, other than "feelunder," I didn't notice any spelling errors.
Score: 1

Technical (design + programming):
Despite the fact that it's nearly 12 years old now, and written in a (now) outdated authoring system, Cruisin has a few design features that I found to be 
interesting.

The one feature that I think sets this game apart from many early AIF games is that your partner here is truly interactive.  You actually have to get Debbie 
aroused by touching and kissing her in various places before you can do anything.  This was a design feature that doesn't appear to have been common in 
the genre before this, and certainly is absent in many games after this, including some written in the past few years.

Unfortunately, this feature is undermined by the fact that all objects and body parts in the game remain undescribed.  You can touch Debbie's breasts, but 
don't bother trying to look at them.

Then there are the parser and design problems, such as the lack of many synonyms and Cruisin's expectation that you'll intuitively know that you have 
to do certain obscure things. Both of these issues make a walkthrough a necessity to play this game.  It's virtually impossible to do it without one.

Cruisin has a lot of lurking bugs as well. Most, like the notorious one in which you must type "feelunder" instead of "feel under," can make the game 
unwinnable.
Score: 4 (for innovation)

Entertainment Factor:
Cruisin' is not very entertaining at all.  If it isn't the poor writing that bogs it down, it's the bugs, and parser problems.

The parser expectations makes things hard.  How the heck am I supposed to know I have to type "put arm" to put my arm around Debbie?  Sure, I've gone on 
dates, and I've even used the old yawn routine, but I never would have thought to type "put arm."  There are at least 2 other cases like this.

Then there's that problem with the lack of object descriptions. That's a real pet peeve of mine.  If you're going to have objects in a room description, let 
me look at them.  In this case, with no object descriptions, how am I supposed to know that my car has a radio, or that I need to turn it on?  Or even that my 
car has a back seat?

This game is enough to give a guy a headache.  Everything described above gives Cruisin almost no replayability.

Bottom line, despite Cruisin's one innovative concept, it really was/is a lousy game.
Score: 1

The Last Word:
I suppose it really isn't fair to review a 12 year old game and give it such a low rating. That said, many of the problems listed herein were well within 
AGT's capabilities to solve.

It might be interesting to see a remake of this game.  The concept of sex with a date at a drive-in is perfect for AIF.

Kastier's ranking: 2 out of 10

 


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