This is the fourth game I am reviewing in the 16th Annual Interactive Fiction Competition. There needs to be some text here so that when Facebook links to it it doesn't include bits of the actual review. And thus it is that I say: the text I put in this space does, not, in fact, actually appear in the Facebook blurb.
Nostalgia is a mixed blessing. Sometimes one goes back to a well-loved old favorite and says, "Wow, this is just as good as I remembered.". And sometimes one says, "Why did I actually like this crap?"
I am not quite of the generation that got into Scott Adams games, so I was never one to appreciate how he evoked atmosphere with short descriptions and a few scenery items in the first place, and I mostly spent my time being irritated by the game's limitations. OK, I know the ladder goes up and down. Can I use 'u' and 'd' to navigate now? Add that to the lacking descriptions and the unhelpful error messages and you have a work that did a great deal to piss me off for no other reason than as a homage to something best left unhomaged in my estimation.
Oh, and all descriptive text is in over-the-top Robert Newton pirate-speak. I'm afraid all my tolerance for that kind of whimsy was used up by last year's Yon Astounding Castle! of some sort.
I'm hard on this game, and didn't like it very much. But I can't imagine that the author expected anything different. Progress is good. We retrogress at our own peril.