Thursday, October 08, 2009

[IF Competition] Gleaming the Verb

This time, I will review Gleaming the Verb. Spoiler space? Hm... I'm running out of ideas.
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Ok, let's go.

Either I am stupid or this game is really weird. It drops me in a room with a cube, tells me to read the cube, gives me a reply and then... nothing. Turns out that reply is a linguistic puzzle from which I must, uhm, gleam the verb, but how am I supposed to know that? I had to look up the first two commands in the walkthrough before I noticed what was going on.

And then I got stuck again. Here is the sentence I was given:

ETERNAL ASKING CURBS NINJA’S ODD IDEA

This is the verb I must gleam from it:

ADJUST

Why? Why is it logical to take the 4th letter of the 6th word, the 3rd letter of the 5th word, the 4th letter of the 4th word, the 2nd letter of the 3rd word, the 2nd letter of the 2nd word and the 2nd letter of the 1st word? Is there some pattern I have missed? (Something to do with odd numbers, I suppose, given that the word "odd" appears in the sentence? But I don't see it. Something with recurrence, given the word "eternal"?)

All in all, then, it took me two gleamings of the walkthrough to even understand that I was supposed to solve linguistic puzzles, and a further gleaming of the walkthrough to get through the game. Even supposing that the latter is due to my stupidity, surely the game author could have assured that the former two were unnecessary by giving me a little more guidance? This is important because there are only 6 small puzzles. If I start out by wasting two of them, there's almost nothing left! :(

I'm not going to rate this game before I understand that "adjust" puzzle, though.

3 comments:

  1. Okay, so it's the last letter of the last word, the second-to-last letter of the second-to-last word, and so on. That makes some sort of sense, and slightly improves my estimate of this game.

    Still... what does this pattern have to do with eternity, ninja's or oddness? Are the patterns totally disconnected from the meaning of the words? If so, wouldn't it have been better to use random strings of letters, in order to avoid confusion?

    I am not sold on this game, and not on this type of puzzle either, but I'll admit that it is a competent example of the form.

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  2. Yeah, they're fairly standard sorts of light encryption-by-embedding. I can appreciate the work that might have gone into coming up with the sentences, but I suspect this is one of those games that is less fun for the player than for the author. Which is a shame.

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  3. Emily, may I laud your sympathetic hearing of random topics?

    Maybe not the best of sense, but neither is "eternal asking curbs ninja's odd idea". :) Took me about a minute.

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