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[personal profile] healyg
Hello, all and sundry! For the next couple weeks I'm going to be reviewing a game from this year's IF Comp every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Up next, it's Brendan Patrick Hennessy's Birdland.

Birdland is short story about a stay at a summer camp that gets pretty weird. The protagonist, Bridget Leaside, spends a month at a summer camp near Toronto, and while there she keeps having weird dreams about birds that slowly start to bleed into reality.

The dreams introduce a Choicescript-esque aspect to Birdland: Each dream you have can affect your moods, which function as stats in this game; they determine whether or not you can take a choice associated with that mood. The outcomes remain mostly the same, I think, but your choices can bring a different flavor to a scene, which requires defter writing skills than you might think.

The writing is really charming and clever. The characters in particular pop out (in fact, there's a surprise appearance by Bell Park, from a previous game by Hennessy), and helped make the story engaging (I was feeling pretty pumped by the end). Hennessy's known for writing funny, witty games, but I think he's really outdone himself here.

Conclusion: Overall, I'd say Birdland was one of my favorite Comp games this year, which is saying a lot considering how good the competition is. A top 3 contender for sure.


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