Well, that was indeed interesting. I think a better scenario would've been where the person to be executed was replaced with something like a small child sleeping outside of a house, and if you kill him, his mother runs outside and starts crying over him. Now THAT would make me depressed.
That would be a rather illogical situation though, imo. In this case you're obviously given orders to shoot him, it's clear that that is what you need to do. I also didn't intend to make you depressed.
I "spoiled" my experience. Still, seems the answer wasn't in here. At least, I wasn't looking for it. I was just wondering if some scary image was gonna pop up if I shot him. I though it was gonna come to be a "classic 2d prank".
Way too easy though. Seems I'm a good person and won. Should I go back and shoot him for the fun of it now?
an interesting idea, but it's far too simplified to have any sort of artistic significance. everyone knows that sparing a person is preferable to killing them, and labeling the outcomes either "win" or "lose" is heavy-handed and clumsy. there are some really good mechanics at work though that only a game could offer.
first, the player is not told how to spare the victim. most players will assume that their options to finish the game are either to shoot the victim or to wait until a message tells them they made the right choice. they will not consider pressing esc, because that is the button to exit. the player does not want to exit; he wants to win and be rewarded for winning and be told he made the right decision. in this way a slick dynamic is at play: patience vs. justice. ("should i wait until i win? this is taking a while. maybe i should shoot him and get it over with? but look at his pathetic eyes! i can't shoot a man like that! but this is taking so long!", etc.)
next, the visuals are very effective at getting the player to recognize the victim's piteous situation. the player can see only his eyes. the player can see only through a gun's vision. the player is vertically higher than the poor victim, a common trick in cinematography to suggest power.
the thing about not being able to change your decision is a nice addition.
i personally tried pointing the gun in the corner for a few minutes with the hope that the victim will be able to escape if i'm not keeping close enough watch. when i returned the aimer to him i was disappointed to see him still there tied to a stick. the game wouldn't let me passively wait for something to happen. i had to make a decision.
it's important for games like this to be made for the advancement of games as an art form. however, works of art are significant because they offer unique glimpses at humanity and what it means to be human, something this game does not do. the execution of this game (sorry, no pun intended) is deep and interesting but it tells us nothing we don't already know. obviously we should spare the victim if we can!
VERDICT: i was thinking about the game's mechanics when i should have been thinking about the game's message, solely because its message was so thin. it fails to suggest the complexities of good or bad or any shades of gray. the game is a step in the right direction but until game mechanics are used to explore meaningful aspects of human nature in ways that only videogames can, no progress will be made.
Wow, such a lengthy review for such a short game! Very interesting read. I agree with what you say, and personally I don't know if this is an art game or not, I'd rather stay out of that discussion.
Basically, I just got an idea that I hadn't seen before. The initial idea was to make a game you could play only once (when you're game over it's REALLY game over). It got turned into this. I may still do something with the original idea...
I didn't base my design on an artistic viewpoint initially, but rather a new gameplay mechanic. It came out a little artsy, but I guess it's natural because it wouldn't be interesting otherwise, being such a short game and all.
I used to think it would be interesting if you could buy little game devices at stores (very cheap) that if you lost the game it would stop working. This is the closest I've seen to that idea.
I wonder whether Tamagotchis could be resetted? It'd be interesting if they were really dead forever if they died. Would even teach kids something.
I would love to see something like this turned into a more lengthy, full game. Maybe not so much that if you made the wrong decision you can't play, but something that tracks your decisions so you can't go back and do things differently.
I agree, not sure yet how it'd work though. I really like that idea.