(This is another Interactive Fiction Competition review .)
April in Paris is about April. In Paris. You want to know anything else, you can get spoilers past the link.
April in Paris puts you in a café. In Paris. You’re trying to get the attention of the snooty waiter. Before he will give you a menu you need to steal his tip, sneak the girl you just picked up off the street past the equally snooty hostess, drive off the resident musician, steal a bottle of wine, mooch another patron’s sandwich, inveigle your way into the kitchen, suck up to the chef, and blackmail the waiter.
So I did. And I asked myself, “Self, why the hell am I doing this?” And there was no answer… because given an entirely mundane setting I think realistically. Realistically, I am not a two-bit con artist, and the first thing I would do in this situation would be to go to another goddamn café.
And this café is so terribly mundane. There’s not much here that isn’t part of a puzzle. The titular April, your supposed love interest, is nothing more than a prop. (It’s even more obvious coming off of Violet, which pretty quickly managed to make me care about Violet.) There’s not much actually wrong with this thing, but as a game, April in Paris is forgettable. As a J. Wellington Wimpy simulator, though, it’s great. Nice weather, isn’t it, we’re having?
2 thoughts on “IFComp 2008: April in Paris”
Yes, this pretty well reflects my own thoughts. I was taken aback by the unpleasant things you have to do, for such a non-compelling reason, in a game set ostensibly in the real world. If April had been conceived as a comedy, going to such lengths to get served at the table might have worked better. As it is, you seem to be invited to act nastily and then enjoy your triumph over the uppity foreigner. That left a bad taste despite the solid game craft.
I think it should have been called “The Zork Adventurer Goes On Vacation.”
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