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First Day Reviews
Author: Mystery
Date: 2001

Reviewed by David Whyld (Reviews Exchange 8)

Background: you're a schoolboy who has to get ready for school.

Hardly the most enthralling of introductions unfortunately. The game’s READ ME task makes a big point of emphasising the fact that this game is for kids. IT IS FOR KIDS! it shouts at one point and that point should be kept in mind if people decide to rate it. Hmmm… Sounds to me like someone who has written a bad game and is trying to ward off any negative comments it may receive.

But on with the game itself. What’s it like? Not too bad for the most part. A few typos here and there yet nothing too hideous. The only problem that presents itself is, wait for it, the dreaded guess the verb. And this game has guess the verb galore. Some of the guess the verb issues are just downright strange – WEAR UNIFORM doesn’t work yet produces a message advising me to try something else. (Being advised what I needed to try would have been helpful.) However, PUT CLOTHES ON works fine. Now, even accepting that this game is aimed directly at kids, how many of them are likely to type PUT CLOTHES ON instead of WEAR CLOTHES? (I discovered this not by trial and error but by opening up the game in the Generator to see what I was missing.) Another location features a bowl and a box of Frooties but whereas Frooties can be referred to in some instances, POUR CEREAL IN BOWL is required to actually get anything done.

Directions in the game appear only after certain tasks have been completed, never a favourite idea of mine. So your bedroom to begin with has just one exit, north to the bathroom, yet once you're wearing your uniform another exit opens up to the east. Likewise, you can’t leave your house until you’ve eaten your breakfast (perhaps the breakfast cereal contains certain ingredients that make the invisible front door somehow visible). And you can’t do anything outside your house… well, at all. The game seems to reach an ending outside of your house with no further tasks to complete, no items to examine and nothing to do at all as far as I could tell.

Overall, First Day isn’t a horrible game but it has the impression of one barely even finished. Outside the house there are no examinable items or even any tasks that need performing – is that the end of the game? But if so, shouldn’t there at least be some kind of THIS IS THE END OF THE GAME message displayed on screen?

3 out of 10

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