Around The House by Jack

This is so much better than the other game I made anyway just explore the house

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Review by David Welbourn
06 Jun 2007
Uh, yeah. For those just tuning in, Jack's first game was "House Adventure", a non-interactive work where you wandered about a few rooms in a house and looked at stuff like the "it's a lamp" lamp, and, um, not much else. Now we get "Around The House" which is a barely-interactive work where you wander about a few rooms in a house and look at stuff and get some rambling description. And you can pick up a few things. Whee. This is pretty awful, but it IS at least ten times better than the first effort.

I don't want to criticize the writing over much at this time. Right now, I merely suggest writing more and hope it gets better with practice.

BUT. I do want to criticize the lack of anything to do in these games. Because, right now, it isn't a game. Or a story. Text adventures ought to be either a story or a game or both, but this... house thing... is just a setting.

If you want to write a story, try for a status change in the main character. Maybe the guy started out poor and then, because of events in the story, he becomes rich. Or he loses his wealth. Or he finds true love. Or he gets that promotion. Something, anything, that changes the main character's status. Wandering around doesn't change a guy.

If you want to write a game, there should be a goal you want the main character to accomplish. Obstacles preventing the goal from being completed are called puzzles. Maybe the house is a pigsty and his parents are coming over and he has to clean up the place or else. Maybe there's a big party and the guy has to get the beer and the chips and stuff. Maybe he's sick of his friend being on the couch and the goal is to eject the bum out of the house.

Think of something. How do you want this guy in a house to change? What is it you want this guy in a house to do?

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