I'm going to split them into multiple posts, to make it easier to skip
reviews and (if needed) reply about specific games.
A 2006 Spring Thing Review
When I review for a competition, I usually do two things. First, I write an
introduction. This lets me state a few goals and make a few predictions.
Second, I define my scoring criteria, so that every game is ranked fairly in
relation to the others, using the same scoring system.
I skipped both steps for the 2006 Spring Thing. At first, I intended to use
IFComp 2005 criteria (http://www.sidneymerk.com/comp05/scoring.shtml). With
only four entries - each being very different from any of the others and
of them being bad - I changed my mind. The final scores are kind of a hybrid
between this and my 2004 C32 Comp system
Ranking them was no easy task. I was tempted to take the cheap way out and
rate them all the same - "Spring Thing 2006: Every Game Gets a Ten!" The
Potter and the Mould is action-packed with good scenery implementation, but
Pantomime has great writing and a trippy storyline. The Warlord, The
& The Bulldog is a lengthy puzzlefest with multiple solutions and some
gameplay mechanics, but The Baron stands apart from its competition with a
well-told, thought-provoking story that lacks puzzles entirely.
To decide on scores, I considered the writing, the story, the
the length of the game, and the experience as a whole. Every entry was great
in its own way. I am incredibly impressed with what each of these authors
done here, and any of them would make a fine Spring Thing winner. However, I
did decide on scores, and so that they're meaningful, no two scores are the
9 - The Warlord, The Princess & The Bulldog
8 - The Potter and the Mould
7 - Pantomime
6 - The Baron
The reviews are listed in the order I played.