Sigmund’s Quest (Gregor Holtz) is a homebrewy browser-based CYOA thing with great big pixel art and a click-noun-for-possible-commands interface. Each screen is a big, pixel-art-blobby image; you click a little tab to bring up a diary with text describing the action, then click on highlighted words for a short list of possible actions.
Prejudices on the table: I am not disposed to like pixel art. Without question, there exist skillful artists who work within the constraints of pixel art to create works of great beauty and expression; and then there many, many more who use pixel art to recreate a sense of the crudely-drawn 80s. Sigmund’s Quest, as the awkward-kid-in-a-cheesy-Viking-hat cover-art suggests, is firmly in the latter camp.
It is a shortish demo rather than a complete work; it feels like kind of a partial demo, too, because while it shows how the art and the interface will work, it doesn’t seem as though it’s got past the introductory sequence yet, either narratively speaking or in the sense of reaching the stage where regular play begins. Or perhaps this is intended as a very linear work (one central plot, one warning and then death for choices that diverge from it) that recapitulates the story; because it describes itself as a homage to point-and-click adventure games I had assumed that it would get to something more adventure-gamey at some point, but perhaps that’s not the idea.
It took me a half-dozen attempts to get it to start playing at all, which is obviously a problem. From the blurb I assumed that the deal was clicking on hotspots, and I couldn’t find any; was this a loading screen or something? Eventually, after switching browsers a number of times to see if that had anything to do with it, I realised that the little red tab at the bottom existed. Clicking it didn’t help, though, and it took me several more attempts before I realised that clicking it in just the right place was the issue. Oy.
Anyway. The IF Comp is not an appropriate venue for demos. That’s IntroComp. (It’s a good place for experiments, but the assumption is that those experiments will be complete works, or at least reach some stage of narrative closure.)