High Programmer > Alan De Smet > Rants > Reviews > Video Game Reviews > Interactive Fiction Reviews > Curses


Rating: 7/10. The perfect Infocom game.
Author: Graham Nelson
Released: 1994
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Spoiler filled maps of Curses

You're a minor British noble preparing for a vacation in Paris. You should be packing with the rest of the family, but you've chosen to distract yourself by rummaging around the attic looking for an old Paris map. In the process you travel through time and space and potentially resolve an old family curse.

This is the best Infocom game that Infocom never made. Graham Nelson captured everything good about Infocom's games: complex, intertwined puzzles; large, quirky worlds and locations. The premise is strange, but ties the time travel together satisfactorily.

On the down side, it suffers from many of Infocom's weaknesses. You'll make many mistakes that it is not possible to foresee. For example, at one point you have the opportunity to travel far into the past. You have only one opportunity to bring a cat with you. You must bring the cat with you to succeed. You have no idea that you'll need the cat until you arrive.

For better or worse, Curses is a very long game, definitely the longest I've ever played. The game is mostly satisfying, but it can be tiring.

Ultimately, Curses is very hard. Most of the puzzles make sense, at least in the context of the game, but there are many difficult ones.

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