Climbing Beyond The Clouds

Player Rating5.06/8

"#237 overall, #25 for 2015"
based on 118 ratings since 03/31/2015
played 1,542 times (finished 139)

Story Difficulty5/8

"run through the jungle"

Play Length3/8

"A nice jog down the driveway"

Maturity Level4/8

"need to be accompanied by an adult"
Contains content that may not be suitable for persons under age 13. If this were a movie, it would probably be PG.

Can you be the first man to reach the summit of Mount Everest?

Authors Note: My last Edutainment game, I promise! It is Fantasy, Modern Adventure and Puzzles all summer now :D

Player Comments


This storygame is extremely good! I loved pretty much everything about it.

The branching was really great, and the quality was consistent enough that I was able to read through the story multiple times and enjoy every ending :D

The characters have great development, and they have personality. The well developed characters really helped me understand the storygame a bit better. I was very glad we got to hear a little bit from the wife's point of view in her letters.

The plot was also very, very creative. It was a really fun edutainment game, and it's certainly very original.

Sure, this storygame isn't the longest, but there's a good amount of branching, words per page, and the writing is very high quality!

I enjoyed every word of this storygame, and it's no doubt one of my favorites.

7/8, amazing work Will! :)
-- MinnieKing on 7/25/2017 3:10:29 PM with a score of 0
Beautifully written, Will. You did quite an amazing job with creating such a great sense of foreboding for certain scenes of the story, so much so that I questioned several times as to why anyone would even want to traverse such a dangerous mountain to begin with.

The letters of the wife were also a good motivation for me to get the protagonist back home safe, so I couldn't help but make that my priority as I read through this amazing story.

Once again, the amount of effort that you put in this shines through brilliantly.

Bravo, Will :) I definitely had my fun with reading this.
-- TharaApples on 10/31/2016 5:14:20 AM with a score of 0
I just. . . Will11, you never fail to amaze us. I wonder how is it that you always manage to combine a lesson about history (or in this case, mount Everest) and a good story? Maybe, the answer is simple. That you are a very talented writer.
Just keep writing stories. We all appreciate it.
-- Penworth on 6/3/2015 1:24:12 AM with a score of 0
I've never really understood the allure of Everest, but the evocative title caught my eye, and I found it to be a compelling read. That said, I feel like you could probably have done without the Strength stat, since it seemed like death was generally choice-based. I thought the letters were a poignant touch... especially since, as far as I can tell, there's no way to have your cake and eat it, too. Which was the right choice from a storytelling perspective, I think. Either ending is bittersweet.

All in all, a journey worth taking.
-- Morgan_R on 4/10/2021 11:35:14 PM with a score of 0
So before I got too far into this story I had to cheat first and consult Google. The hook for this storygame is to become the first person to summit Everest. But then when I began the story and saw this was about Mallory in 1924, and not Hillary in 1953...

Well, let's just say that I invite every reader to do that same Google search. And be sure to look at the pictures of what became of Mallory on Mount Everest.

Beyond the ultimate outcome of the expedition, I don't know much of details of what happened in June 1924. Therefore this was an informative read that I enjoyed. Since I knew the true ending ahead of time--those images from 1999 are hard to forget, 20 years later--I kept reading until I had the option to climb with a fellow mountaineer named Irvine. Then when disaster struck, I used my ice axe and found exactly what I was looking for.

So yes, this was a short but enjoyable read, giving me some insight into the events leading up to Mallory's death. But I do have some quibbles:

First and foremost, the "Strength" stat is mostly useless. On the first page there is an explanation that if this stat drops to zero, you die. But in all of the death endings I encountered this stat never did reach zero. In this story--as in real life--it's not math that kills you, but chemistry. Namely, the lack of both oxygen and heat makes Everest one of the few places on Earth where life is impossible. If climbers are dying by the dozen in 2019, then the odds were poorer in 1924.

Second, I don't find the writing style truly immersive. It rushes from factoid to factoid, but provides limited insight into the mountaineering culture. The story seems reasonably well researched, but it reads more like a school report than an immersive you-are-there experience.

On the other hand, the letters from Ruth were a nice touch, and I found her to be the most compelling character in the whole story. She was speaking from the heart, whereas Mallory is more of a cipher. Was there really a new letter going up the mountain every day, though?

Also, this story indulges in the tantalizing theory that Mallory actually did reach the summit, although we may never know for sure. However, it mentions something about Mallory's snow goggles flying off as he tumbled down the mountain. If I recall correctly, [SPOILER] these were among the items found on his body.

And for the ultimate SPOILER:
-- Bill_Ingersoll on 6/28/2019 10:21:25 PM with a score of 0
Really well-written. The letters from my wife made me more determined to survive for her, and I like how the options that could be considered more 'selfish' actually directly benefit you sometimes, allowing you to keep your strength.

There's one thing I really need to know, though - can you save Man?
-- Bethius on 5/31/2018 4:47:29 AM with a score of 0
This was well written and not too long of a story. I really enjoyed reading it! Nice little history lesson to boot.
-- Dave on 5/25/2018 3:31:44 PM with a score of 0
it was good
-- vesaun on 5/3/2018 11:21:30 AM with a score of 0
:) That was awesome writing. It is a noble goal to put these true stories before the world, so that we do not forget the lessons of the past. It is terrible so many died trying to reach Mt. Everest. But, this is a true story.
-- HowdyHiHello on 4/13/2018 7:42:28 PM with a score of 0
Epilogue: Memorial Service at St Pauls Cathedral
Four months later you find yourself standing with the other European survivors of the Everest expedition in St Paul’s Cathedral for Odell and Sandy’s memorial service. All of Britain has been shocked by the loss of the two famous climbers. The British Prime Minister and all the members of the British Cabinet sit in the front pew. Across from them sit members of the Royal Family, King George V and his wife Queen Mary among them...
Long after Edmund Hilary and Tenzin Norgay reach the summit of Mount Everest in 1953 uncertainty continues to reign over whether others did it first nearly thirty years before. You are questioned endlessly about where exactly you saw Odell and Sandy climbing the mountain that day until you become uncertain. You live a long life with your wife Ruth and your three wonderful children Frances, Berry and John but until your dying day in 1987 you can never forget about your friends who climbed beyond the clouds on Everest and never came back…
STRENGTH is 4.""

Hmm... makes me wonder if it would have been better to choose that ending of climbing to the summit with them and then plunge into darkness\death due to their\our? fall from the mountain after coming down from the summit. Well, guess sometimes you never know. ;)
-- TestingJest on 10/31/2017 4:56:35 AM with a score of 0
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