Author: Michael Sheldon
A squire can't become a knight without first completing a "randomly"
assigned task. Unfortunately, I found the actions needed to complete
the task to be the random ones.
Terse room descriptions can work, if done well. Here, too many of
them are short and generally flavorless. The majority of the rooms are
described as, "Here are the objects, here are the exits." They could
really use some variety and a little bit of color, even if they're not
the foundation of major puzzles. The start room and monastery have a
bit of flavor and it's a shame that more of the rooms weren't like them.
The story is nothing original, but I don't hold this against the game.
Its puzzles, on the other hand, are its major weakness. One is
imaginative, with two possible solutions. The others are boil down to
stale give-item-to-person puzzles, with one of them standing out as both
disgusting and completely unclued. Without reading the walkthrough or
the author's mind, only the most stubborn of flailing will allow you to
finish this game.
The comings and goings of NPCs used basic library functions when they
really ought to have been spruced up a bit for effect. The same applies
to some of the denial messages. For instance, when I tried to pick up
the cat, the response was, "You can't have Picklebird." Well, why not?
I also found some of the major scenery items mentioned in room
descriptions to be unimplemented. Never underestimate the value of
minor implementation details.
The armourer puzzle set a level of expectation that the rest of the
game failed to live up to. Then I encountered the unclued puzzle
mentioned above and became even more disappointed. Additionally, the
game lacks polish and attention to detail. Too many things are stock
responses, though I appreciated the more fleshed-out implementation of
Brother Lee, with his randomized response to generic topics.
Solving the armourer situation with the appropriate object. A decent
puzzle that fits in the framework of the game. The bugle, its location,
and its alternate use are all appropriate. Also finding out that there
is a clever, alternative solution to the armourer puzzle.
Reading the walkthrough and discovering what I had to do to "reveal"
the secret of the Chi'monk. Really, his "secret" was obvious. The
solution was anything but.