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[personal profile] healyg
Hello, all and sundry! We're in the final stretch of the IF Comp judging period, so I'll be reviewing one game a day until Saturday, November 14th. (That's an extra 4 reviews!) Up next, it's Chandler Groover's Midnight. Swordfight..

Midnight. Swordfight. (the periods are very important) is a raucous game about a duel that's about to go very poorly for you. Though you may try again and again to win, nothing works... until you wind up in the past and get the chance to change the duel's circumstances in your favor. There are several ways to do this that I found; the game claims there are 25 different endings, and I stopped after I did 3 or 4. Getting around is a little confusing at first, but other than that, manipulating things runs smoothly.

The writing in this game is stellar, and conveys a sense of setting and mood really effectively. There's a dark, black humor that permeates the game (this is definitely not a game for children or the easily offended), punctuated by lighter moments (the noblewoman in the swan costume comes to mind here). And I must give special props to the author for the one NPC you can interact with in any detailed way; they feel really responsive and alive with just a simple keyword conversation system system.

Conclusion: Midnight. Swordfight. is a great, smartly written game. It's easily in contention for the top 3 games this year.


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