Death, and what lies beyond...

Player Rating4.10/8

"Too few ratings to be ranked"
based on 16 ratings since 09/08/2020
played 184 times (finished 19)

Story Difficulty1/8

"no possible way to lose"

Play Length3/8

"A nice jog down the driveway"

Maturity Level5/8

"aren't you a little too old to be trick or treating"
Some material may be inappropriate for persons under age 13. If this were a movie, it would probably be PG-13.

"My story is about Death, which is to say nothing more than it was written by a man...all stories are about death in the end." -JRR Tolkien

If you were faced with the imminent knowledge of death, what would you think about the most? This interactive story allows you to explore the idea of an afterlife, and at the end of the road, you must face the Reaper. There may be a way to avoid him, though you might lose more than you bargained for along the way...

There are four different "afterlives" in this story, and most of these afterlives have their own "sub endings" which are dependent on your choices. There is also a secret bonus ending, wholly distinct from any of the "afterlives", though you have to make very specific choices to obtain it, and it may not be the best ending, though that of course will be entirely dependent on the perspective of the reader.

This game is a little short if you only play through it once, so multiple attempts are encouraged, though this is of course completely optional.

Player Comments

I'm a bit of a sucker for philosophical musings, about life, love, loss, death, so on. I find it interesting to linger on these subjects, something that's kind of led to me becoming a bit of a brooding wannabe philosopher in my late teens. With that being said, the concept of this story appealed to me right away. Overall, however, I feel like the concept isn't executed as well as it could have been. This is definitely a story that would have benefited from being longer and having more choices to make and paths to explore. As it is, it feels like a proof of concept for a much larger game.

The first page was quite good and drew me in; the line about Death's speech being like a bell tolling painted an interesting idea of what he sounds like to me and made his line that much more chilling. Some of the lines afterwards were also interesting, what would be filler lines in other stories being made reminders of the protagonist's looming demise. These were interspersed with rather boring lines by comparison, such as "your phone reads 10:35 PM"; personally I would've incorporated that looming demise into even those lines, like "your phone reads *time* and every second that ticks by reminds you of Death's words."

The choice with the speakers of different religions was well-written, but ultimately just needless exposition. The very idea of an anti-religious speaker, in a world where the Grim Reaper, ghosts, reincarnation, and, oh, *the Afterlife* exist was stupid. Sure, it makes sense I suppose, you'll wind up in whatever afterlife you believe in and all that, but I felt like choosing the anti-religious speaker just locked you out of an actually interesting ending like believing the Abrahamic speaker, the Ghost speaker, or *especially* the Snake Shirt speaker. Even endings where you don't talk to the speakers at all which were *much* more interesting than the anti-religious ending.

The reincarnation ending was by far the most interesting ending... But also the most disappointing. It feels a bit too tidy and was written in a much less interesting, more dry way than other parts of the story. I feel like a more abstract stream of consciousness approach to the writing for this ending would've tremendously helped; something that gives off the feeling that you're living trillions upon trillions of different lives rather than just telling you that you are. Different flashes of memories and feelings merging together until you can't make them out anymore. Something more artsy I guess. Maybe that's just my tastes.

Overall, I feel like this game can be summed up as a competently written piece by an author yet to grow into their own style. Keep writing, find your style, and incorporate it more into your writing. Definitely learn to show, rather than tell. Good luck on your next story.

5/8
-- Chris113022 on 11/18/2020 10:22:05 PM with a score of 0
I personally enjoyed this well written albeit short story. Length doesn't matter much to me however so you're in the clear there. I liked the idea of what you believe, you end dying and being sent. It's similar to the belief that we all have our very own afterlife, that is tailored to our preferences, beliefs, loved ones, etc. Good story overall and I liked the abstractness of it.
-- Unlondon on 11/23/2020 12:26:51 AM with a score of 1
Some interesting ideas for a story to explore and definitely a more unique premise than a lot of short games I've seen, but a bit more could've been done with it. Even a couple of randomized scenarios besides the beggar and the puppy would've mixed things up a little on a replay.

The message here seems to be that you get an afterlife custom tailored to your beliefs, with the most detailed writing and interesting outcome reserved for immediately latching onto the wisdom of some stoner in a T-shirt.

If it were me I'd have gone 'Psych!' and thrown the atheist in hell if they were a dick, as basically the god of the storygame world, that's an author's right when it comes to people who ignore lost puppies.
-- mizal on 9/11/2020 5:40:26 PM with a score of 0
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