Moon-shaped

By Jason Ermer.

In this retelling of Little Red Riding Hood. You are Rosalind, the girl with the red cape, tasked to deliver food to your grandmother, who has been ill of late.

All is really not as it seems, though, and this is no walk in the, well, woods. What I liked about this were the refreshing twists on the story we’re so used to. The idea behind the game was creative enough, and, after playing, still remains ingenious. The story is mostly linear, though it contains several alternative endings, all determined by the endgame.

However, several things detracted from enjoyment of the game. There are alarmingly long stretches of text in the form of ‘visions’, which seems, above all, to be a rather lame attempt to force a lot of backstory into a few actions. This, unfortunately, occurred several times, especially toward the end of the story. Part of the moral of the story feels very heavily laid on in the beginning of the game, to the effect that it sounded very artificial. Yet nothing was said about this moral in the endgame.

The game also felt slightly glitchy at times. Some descriptions did not change even after performing actions which should have changed the object; some actions must be performed at specific locations to be able to progress with the game. The game could have been more robust if it were more flexible for the player, but this is really a small matter.

Don’t get me wrong: Moon-shaped is enjoyable in parts and does have an interesting story, but it was let down by the textwalls of backstory.

Although one of the themes in this game is family, I felt little emotion for any of the main characters- even the grandmother, who in some ways is the lynchpin of the story. There wasn’t much in the way of personal involvement for the PC, who seems to have stumbled on this whole story purely by accident. I mean- what’s stopping her from just going home and not bothering?

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