Digital – A Love Story

I find that there is a lot to say about this game… First it is an interactive novel set shortly after the internet was domesticated and BBSes were spreading. It is delivered through correspondence between you and various people/boards you can access. However, the messages you send out are not shown and therefore it puts a bit of agency into the game since you will be filling it in from the context of replies. Furthermore it is told through a GUI which is designed to look like the PCs of the time. This is accompanied by a soundtrack comprised of mellow chiptune music and it adds a wonderful touch of immersion to help drive the theme.

Avoiding spoilers the basic plot is that you have a new PC and a number you can dial into to connect to a local BBS where you start to interact with various people. One such catches your attention with a piece of poetry and the narrative centers around this new relationship. There are tidbits of information of the age and a few fictional notes to push the story forward making the game almost like a period piece on the start of the internet age.

Mechanically the game is almost entirely entering numbers into a modem and reading the stuff people post or send to you directly. Unfortunately this can get a little tiresome, but the game is overall rather short which makes it easier to handle. There are no quick entries for the servers or passwords, but you can skip the dial up tone which plays whenever you are connecting.

I cannot say if this game is better to those who were around during the time or if it can appeal to any who grew up afterward, but I am in the middle of the two and can say that this game was fascinating on it’s surface and compelling in it’s story. You can check it out as a free download at http://scoutshonour.com/digital/ and I recommend it to anyone who is into narrative driven games looking for something new.

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