IF Comp ’16 – Fade Manley’s The Little Lifeform That Could!

October 11, 2016

I like the idea of being a tiny microbe with grand dreams, working my way up from the evolutionary mailroom. Also this game has promised me a chance at a fancy hat.

[spoilers begin here]

Being asked all of these questions about how I would evolve my lifeform is totally giving me ASMR. So I got that going for me.

Super love this exchange:

[  ] I even know what “verdant” means!
What, really?
[  ] …no. I just crawled out of the primordial ooze.

Once, long ago, you and your kind were mere beasts. But you’ve discovered fascinating things since then. Tool use! Language!

Oh man this keeps going, like Spore! (Remember Spore?)

These people wear such very fancy hats. You have never seen a hat like that before. One of them MUST be yours.

I felt this way about a hat one time and then I gave a woman twenty dollars and now that hat is MINE.

The strangers scorn your impoverished village, and leave after making some very hurtful comments about your lack of hats.

I hate this game.

[  ] You made fancy hats of your own.
It was a long process, but these days your hats are second to none. There are occasional rustling noises in the bushes when someone shows up to stare in awe at your magnificent hat of the day.

Okay, I like this game again.

Today, at the official “Hurrah For Being A Real City” ceremony, you announce to the rapt listeners what your guiding philosophy will be.
[  ] Look at our art! Isn’t it nice? We have hats.

I’m worried about being known for how nice our art is, because I think that might end badly for a weaponless city, but I gotta agree that hats are pretty good.

In this experimental new craft, you personally will take to the stars and lead your people into a glorious space-based future.

I, uh, here’s the deal: I don’t want to go to space. I already didn’t want to go to space, and then I saw that movie Gravity, and it made me even less want to go into space. Space is terrible and no one should go there ever. That has been my hot take on space.

Okay I just went to space and it was fine, actually. Space was fine.

Then I beat the game, started over as a cuddly creature, made friends with the hat people and got some hats. Life is good.

So, yeah, I liked this game fine. You could probably have an interesting discussion about why all ChoiceScript games seem to be similar in scope and tone — whether it’s because that’s what the mechanics encourage, because people are emulating earlier ChoiceScript games, little of both, a third thing — but I personally am not going to right now, because my hat says it is bedtime.

Good night, hat.


  1. “I felt this way about a hat one time and then I gave a woman twenty dollars and now that hat is MINE.”

    Was she working in a hat store, or did you just go up to a woman whose hat you admired and say, “I must have your hat! Here’s twenty bucks”?

    • She was selling hats at a convention, which is way less interesting than if I’d just bought it from her on the street, and now I am ashamed of myself and my boring-ass life choices.

      It’s a great hat though.

  2. Yes! We also felt the Spore connection. Fun times.

  3. Like EVO, with hats!

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