Saturday, October 10, 2015

Capsule II - The 11th Sandman (review)

"Capsule II - The 11th Sandman" is a web-based interactive fiction by PaperBlurt, entered in the 2015 Interactive fiction competition. This game had all the cards stacked against it, but my initial impression was wrong.  You must play this.

It had all the cards stacked against it.  I had played PaperBlurt's "Dad vs. Unicorn" game in 2013 and didn't like it.  I thought the title and blurb of "Capsule II" were kind of lame.  I had read a review of "Capsule II" by Juhana Leinonen, which was largely unfavorable.  Worse, in the opening pages of "Capsule II" I agreed with the main points of Leinonen's review.  The alternate universe imagined here is unbelievable and internally inconsistent.

But after playing this story long enough you will suspend disbelief.  The writing quality is compelling.  The graphics and text animations are carefully designed.  The imagined universe might be fake, but the human behavior described here is real. I won't say any more.  You must play this without any spoilers.


  1. A minor clarification: my review might be "largely unfavorable" if you count the number of words used to discuss the game's weak points, but my overall impression was positive just as yours. The problem with reviewing is that reviews become easily skewed like this: it's easy to write 100 words about a minor detail that could be improved, but it's very hard to do the same for something that works well.

    1. Thank you for your clarification. I thought your review was well written, and highlighted both strengths and weaknesses.