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How Did I Get Into This?
Author: shaunace
Date: 2012

Reviewed by Po. Prune

As happy as I am when I see a new adrift game it equally worries me when it's a newbie and the author hasn't asked for help or suggestions in the forum. This usually means that s/he either knows what s/he's doing or the game is going to be very buggy. Unfortunately this turned out to be one of the latter.

First of all the game has very little intro and it leaves you more confused than enlightened. Apparently you are sitting at a register at a supermarket and you want to get out of there. (Don't we all?) There's no telling how you can get out, or what you have to do. So you go ahead and do your job.

The touch about the customer beginning to get impatient is nice and helps stress the player. I was wondering if something would happen if I didn't find the solution. The commands are clearly displayed which is a good thing, even tough it took me some time to figure that out, but then again, I'm Danish :-)

The text is short and sometimes funny, but not very informative regarding as what to do next.

Another point. The game seem to be a terribly unstructured. One minute you're scanning an item, the next you're transferred to the town at night, with a bottle of wine (where did I get that from?)

Your next action brings you into a missile control room where you see the infamous red button. The game seem to have avoided any beta testing. At the end of the game, or what I assume to be the end. I tried to give the bottle of wine to Red, the character in the control room with me and got the “bad argument to character name message” This is a known bug in V.5 and there's a fix out for it (I know I've used it myself) This would clearly have been discovered during a test run of the game. Also I managed to get killed for not pushing the button although I had pushed it.

Reviewed by David Whyld

If I had to sum up this game in a single sentence, I'd probably go with "five minutes of pointlessness". It's of a type I've played before: a game that starts badly, goes nowhere and ends without anything of import happening. The good and bad endings are pretty much the same, so player input is largely irrelevant.

I found the terse responses to what I considered perfectly reasonable commands particularly annoying. If the author's intention was to annoy players, he succeeded admirably. In fact, after several remarkably unhelpful responses I considered quitting and if not for the fact that I finished the game before I knew it, I probably would have done. The "five minutes of pointlessness" comment I made was perfectly serious; even by the standards of short games, this one was so short that it was over almost before I'd begun playing it. The three scenes are each tiny, with no real leeway given for the player to explore or try other things; you can do what you have to do and nothing else, and what you have to do is nothing very special. There's also no explanation given for what any of the scenes have to do with each other. Why am I working on a checkout in scene one but in a command centre in scene three about to press a button that launches missiles?

If you want an example of a game that does an excellent job of being both incredibly short and incredibly frustrating, play this one. Otherwise, avoid it like the plague.

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