[IF Comp 2019] "The Surprise", by Candy Meldromon

(Note: Candy Meldromon is a psuedonym. I know who the author is, but I can't remember whether they made a public announcement of this, so I'll just leave the pseudonym in place.)

Ahw, congratulations! I’ve been there, which perhaps makes it more easy to relate to the situation. Well, not literally there, given that I’m biologically male, but as there as a biological male could possibly be.

Does The Surprise also work as a piece of fiction? Clearly, it’s very short. And the interaction is a bit fiddly, given that you have to find out which actions are possible in which sublocations. In fact, this is what most reviewers have complained about. However, this is definitely intentional? The way the interaction is set up makes you feel slightly disoriented, nervous, doing small things wrong all the time. It makes you ripe for the waiting-effect when you finally do the tests, which I found creates real tension. The phone call to your significant other is also well written; true to life, moving in a small quiet way.

The Surprise is not trying to do anything major or epic, but it shows us something that is human and as significant as anything can be in a human life. And, if I may be forgiven a horrible pun, it does that one small thing surprisingly well. Like a haiku executed with perfection. I rate this quite high.


Popular posts from this blog

Keeping the narrative pressure on

Thoughts on a Trollbabe session