Jedadiah Leland’s Horrorfic Adventures In The Internet Archive #28: Stephen King’s The Mist (1985, Angelsoft, Inc)


For my final horrific adventure of the month, I returned to the Internet Archive and I played Stephen King’s The Mist (1985, Angelsoft, Inc.)

The Mist is a text adventure based on Stephen King’s novella.  (The game came out before both the television series and Frank Darabont’s film version.)  You are at the supermarket, just trying to buy your groceries and get home, when suddenly a thick mist envelopes the entire town.  There are monsters in the mist and you soon discover that there are monsters in the store as well.  Can you survive the mist and make your way back to your home where, hopefully, your son is still alive and waiting for you to rescue him?

The Mist does a good job of turning King’s story into a work of interactive fiction.  Even if you have read the story or watched the movie, The Mist is still not an easy game.  This is a game where it is very easy to get killed and there’s one puzzle where, due to randomization, you can do everything right and still end up dying.  It is unfortunate that you cannot save games while playing them in the Internet Archive because The Mist is a game that can only be won through trial and error.

The best advice that I can give is don’t spend too much time in the supermarket, pick up everything that you can, and don’t shoot Mrs. Carmody, as much as you may want to.

Of course, you can just play the game with a walkthrough, like I did.

 

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Jedadiah Leland’s Horrific Adventures Online #27: Bitten By A Werewolf (2013)


For my next adventure, I played Bitten By A Werewolf (2013).

Bitten By A Werewolf is a choose-your-own-adventure style Twine game.  This is the first thing you see:

I don’t want to be too hard on Bitten By A Werewolf because, having played it, I get the feeling that it was written either by a kid or by someone still learning how to write in English.  The game’s text regularly switches back from first to third person, sometimes in the same sentence.

The figure in the woods is a werewolf.  You can run but don’t expect to avoid getting bitten.  You can also stop long enough to try to help one of your friends climb out of a ravine but don’t expect it to go well.

The most interesting thing about Bitten By A Werewolf is discovering all the ways to die.  Here are a few examples:

When it comes to getting bitten by a werewolf, the best advice is not to get bitten in the first place.  Remember that the next time you’re in the woods and tempted to chase every strange figure you see.

 

Jedadiah Leland’s Horrific Adventures Online #26: My Evil Twin (2015, Carl Muckenhoupt)


For my next horrific adventure, I played My Evil Twin (2015, Carl Muckenhoupt).

This is a short and clever game about you and your evil twin.  You have just pulled an all-nighter and you may want to sleep but you know you can’t.  Your evil twin is out there, doing evil things.  Not only did he mess up the neighbor’s lawn but he also set up a mind control device in the park.  Can you figure out how to enter his secret lair and stop him?

My Evil Twin is based on the They Might Be Giants song.  How easy the puzzles are to solve will depend on how much you know about the band’s history.  I had to resort to Google to solve one puzzle because it required knowing a certain obscure piece of TMG trivia that was not hidden anywhere in the game.  Other than that, I liked My Evil Twin.  It was short, to the point, and I enjoyed reading about all the terrible things that my twin did whenever I was not around.

Jedadiah Leland’s Horrific Adventures Online #25: Don’t Go In The Old Greene House (2015, Laura Knetzger)


For my next horrific adventure online, I played Don’t Go In The Old Green House (2015, Laura Knetzger).

Don’t Go In The Old Greene House is another Twine Choose Your Own Adventure type of game.  You have been dared to spend all of Halloween night in the old Greene House, which is said to be haunted.  You agree because you know better than to turn down a dare.  Exploring the house means running into mysterious spirits.  Here’s something that I learned the hard way: Be nice to the little girl at the table.  I know that one of the fun things about interactive fiction is that you get to do things that you would never do in real life but, no matter how tempted you may be, do not tell the girl at the table to stop crying and fuck off.  Bad things will happen.

Twine games are always a mixed bag for me.  I enjoy the simple format but, as opposed to games made with Inform or TADS, they can leave you feeling more like a reader than an active participant in the game.  Don’t Go In the Greene House is an example of a good Twine game, well-written and with enough different outcomes that it is actually worth replaying.

Jedadiah Leland’s Horrific Advenures Online #24: Faithful Companion (2013, Matt Weiner)


Since I was running out of horror games to play in the Internet Archive, I decided to broaden my sights by exploring the Interactive Fiction Database.  That is where I found Faithful Companion (2013, Matt Weiner).

Faithful Companion is simply but difficult.  You are at the cemetery, visiting the mausoleum.  You want to get in the crypt.  Opening the doors that lead into the crypt should be easy except you are being followed by a ghost.  Any action you take will be duplicated by the ghost two turns later.

That may not sound like a big deal until you learn that, if the ghost touches you, you will pass out.  If you take something and are still holding it two turns later, that means the ghost will take it from you.  If you have to open a door by pushing three latches so that they open, the ghost will follow behind you, pushing the latches closed.  The game’s challenge comes from fooling the ghost into helping you accomplish what you want to do.

I enjoyed this game.  It is short, it is not impossibly hard, and it’s rewarding when you actually figure it all out.

Jedadiah Leland’s Horrific Adventures in The Internet Archive #23: Psycho (1988, Starsoft Development Laboratories)


For my next horrific adventure in the Internet Archive, I played Psycho (1988, Starsoft Development Laboratories).

Psycho is an example of game that borrows a famous name but has next to nothing to do with its supposed inspiration.  Despite the picture above, you do not play Norman Bates in Psycho.  You are not Marion Crane, either.  You are not even Aborgast, Lila, or Sam.

Instead, you are a nameless detective who is searching for some jewels that were stolen from a museum.  For some reason, you believe the jewels were stolen by Norman Bates and that Norman is holding a curator hostage at his motel.  (None of that sounds like Norman.)  You go to investigate.

You have only four hours to find the jewels and rescue the curator.  Unfortunately, once you enter the house, you will be randomly besieged by ghosts, dogs, and other members of the Bates family.

If they touch you, you fall asleep for a period of time.  Somewhere in the game, there is a gun. If you find it, you can at least shoot at the ghosts.  Why wouldn’t a detective have his own gun?  I’m not sure.

Psycho the game has not aged well.  What was probably state of the art in 1988 now feels clunky and slow.

I do like the painting of Mother Bates, though.

Since first discovering it, I have tried to play Psycho on ten separate occasions.  Each time, I got frustrated with the slow gameplay and I quit.  Norman can have the jewels and the curator.  After all, he wouldn’t hurt a fly.

Jedadiah Leland’s Horrific Adventures In The Internet Archive #22: The Dark Convergence (1993)


For my today’s final adventure in the dark side of the Internet Archive, I played The Dark Convergence (1993).

The Dark Convergence is another haunted house game.  Like Uninvited, it starts with a car crash.

Since you crashed the car, it is up to you get help.  That means that it is time to start walking.

I tried to go into the woods but the game would not let me.  I also tried typing “kick sign” into the parser, just to be told that I was not allowed to do that either.  So, I kept walking until I found the house:

The house looked haunted but it was also the only sign of civilization that I had come across in the game.  Plus, I tried to keep walking down the road, just to run into an invisible wall as soon as I passed the house.

In the house, I discovered this:

That mess on the floor was the house’s owner.

I explored the house a little further.

This bedroom was nice until all of the monsters came through the door.

So much for that.  Fortunately, in a game like this, you can always restart after you die and hopefully, apply the lessons that you learned from the first time you played.  The main lesson I learned was to close the door after me.

The Dark Convergence is a typical haunted house game, the type where you have to solve puzzles to keep from having a bunch of monsters use your organs to “decorate the room’s interior.”  The puzzles are not hard, though some of them require more patience than others.  If you enjoyed Hugo’s House of Horrors, you’ll enjoy The Dark Convergence.