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Anchorhead

2 months ago

Feature: Tentacles at dawn

What Call Of Cthulhu and The Sinking City could learn from this interactive fiction classic

Picture Cthulhu and his tentacled cohorts, dark and dreaming beneath the waves. H.P. Lovecraft’s crooked astral vistas - wrought out of cosmic despair, fear of the unknown, and his racism - have saturated games for better and worse. As hypnotic as his nightmare visions are, the same tropes regurgitated at face value have become dry and tired. It’s been done, and it’s steeped in its…

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2 years ago

Classic IF horror Anchorhead revised and illustrated

You might think you're made of stern stuff after beating Cuphead, but have you the bottle for Anchorhead? The Lovecraftian interactive fiction from 1998 "has been pretty consistently considered one of the greats of the noncommercial IF canon ever since", Emily Short told us, and now it's fancier than ever. Creator Michael Gentry has launched an 'Illustrated Edition' which, obviously, includes a whole load of…

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Feature: Games from the Spring Thing festival

IF Only: Games from Spring Thing 2017

Spring Thing is a yearly festival for interactive fiction, with two sections: the Main Festival, where the games are in competition and anyone may vote for a favorite; and the Back Garden, for unranked games that the authors wanted to share but not receive a ranking. This somewhat unusual structure means that the Back Garden has become an attractor for games that might not be…

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3 years ago

Feature: An attempt to make commercial parser IF viable

IF Only: Remembering Textfyre

For quite a lot of the 2000s, IF enthusiasts hoped for a future in which parser IF would become commercially viable again. There were various theories about how to do that, but one company made a more serious attempt than most. Dave Cornelson put together Textfyre, a company that would create interactive fiction aimed at roughly middle school-aged children. The games would have a custom…

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