In the Fields

Player Rating4.44/8

"Too few ratings to be ranked"
based on 21 ratings since 05/13/2020
played 235 times (finished 26)

Story Difficulty3/8

"trek through the forest"

Play Length4/8

"A well spent lunch break"

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.

Hope you enjoy!

Player Comments

(SPOILERS!)

Hmmmm. 'In The Fields' is certainly an unorthodox and very imaginative piece of writing. I like how the story is told from the perspective of a character that people don't even consider worthy of exploring. Still, like most works, this one has a few ups and downs.

Ups:
- It was really interesting to learn and see how the robots live and interact with each other. It gives the book a sense of relatability because it portrays the robots having human-like thoughts, emotions and aspirations. However, it also mashes that human-like warmness with the more stereotypical cold unfeelingness we tend to assign to machines. This is evident on the first page where 'Pick crops' is our only option, though it is given as 3 'separate options'. I really commend that.

- The spelling and grammar in this book is very impressive. The construction of the sentences also fits with how people would expect a robot to 'speak' and experience the world.

- The several endings give the story some replay value, but to the average Joe, it may not be worth replaying as unless you are actively searching for endings, you may just keep getting Ending 10 over and over again (or get Ending 18 and be severely confused).

Downs:
- Ending 18 is very weird and abrupt. I am still quite confused as to why that happens. Did I do something wrong or trigger something by mistake? I don't know. More confusing still is that the phenomenon does not seem to come up anywhere else in the story. If it were an earthquake or a hole, I would expect some other robots to have also experienced it or even have been damaged by it.

- The inconsistency of 'The Overseer' is confusing. In some paths he is okay with just increasing productivity and in other paths, he tries to take over the world. I wish more fleshing and background was given to him, because he just confuses me.

- For some paths, it also kinda feels the direction the stories takes after a decision is weird. The cause-and-effect link seems to be weak in some places. Sometimes, I lost track of how I got to an ending and *almost* ended up drawing a mind map to make sense of it all.

- There is also a technical issue with the common room area repetition, but it didn't really bother me.

THE VERDICT? The book has a very interesting premise and impresses me in several ways. However, there are a few flaws that plague the book, but in the end, it's still worth a read and I recommend that players should endeavour to replay the game a few times and try to get to a few different endings. You've gotta give it the author, though. You can feel the work put into writing this story and for all the above reasons, I decided to give this book a 5/8 (5.4/8).
-- Ytterbius on 5/28/2020 9:45:05 AM with a score of 0
Well this is certianly unique. It's not often that you see a story written from the perspective of a robot. (Granted, I don't read much science fiction, so my experience is somewhat limited). It even feels like it's being told from the perspective of a robot. The narration has sort of computer-speak style to it, just enough to really sell it, but not so much that it becomes annoying. A nice touch to say the least.

As for the world itself, it feels interesting enough. It was really cool to get a good look at how the robots lived, especially at what they do in their free time. I especially liked the idea of a picking simulation. It's such a creative way to give robots their own version of games and competition without making them seem unrealistically human. You also did a great job of characterizing the master and the overseer for the most part. I was able to get a pretty good idea of their personalities even without having very many scenes with them. (There is one exception, however, mentioned in the next paragraph).

There were a few mysteries that went unsolved so far as I could tell, like the one about the weird metal piece. I may have missed an ending or something, but I found it rather strange that this seemingly central plot-point went unresolved. There are a couple other things that could've used a more explanation as well. Some of them came out of nowhere, like the ending you get if you walk away from the strange piece of metal without investigating. Why on earth did the ground suddenly open up, and why would it have made any difference if I had picked up the metal piece in the first place? And what about the overseer suddenly taking over the world? This only happens in one ending so far as I can tell, and it feels somewhat out of place. There was no real build up to it. I mean, sure, he's not nice to robots, but I would imagine most humans don't see robots as anything more than appliances. It seems like a pretty big leap to go from "guy hell bent on productivity" to "guy hell bent on world domination." These things make the story feel a little unfinished. It's a fantastic start, don't get me wrong, but there are some things that need to be a little more fleshed out.

I also saw a few weird errors, which I can only assume are related to scripting. For one thing, there are three "Pick Crops" links on the first page, that seem to all do the same thing. And during the leisure time scene, the text describing how my character found the strange metal object appears every time I return to the page with all the options. This could easily be fixed by changing the pagetext after returning to that page a second time. (If you don't know how to do this, I'd recommend reading the articles on scripting over in the help and info section).

Despite my gripes, I really did enjoy this. It'd be really cool to see an expanded version of this story, or anything else by this author for that matter. This shows a lot of promise. 5/8
-- jster02 on 5/20/2020 4:12:50 PM with a score of 0
I can definitely tell that you put a ton of work into this! I really enjoyed the concept of it, you managed to flesh it out fairly well in the few routes that I followed. I went down the overseer route, and there weren't many instant deaths or anything so it was easy to go through them and explore.

I liked that there were many paths to go down, it goes with the theme of being a CYOA story. I did feel like story-wise it could have been a little better. This felt more like a concept or a game than it did a story, which is fine for a CYOA story but it would have made - as Mara said below - the reader able to empathize or 'feel' like the character if that makes sense. I didn't really feel like I was able to really like any of the characters since they weren't fleshed out much, including the main character.

Your descriptions were good, however. You were able to make me visualize the characters in the story fairly well, like the Master.

One other complaint I did have is with the writing at some points.

Overall, your writing is fine. You have a good vocabulary and you didn't make too many mistakes, but there were some issues I feel the need point out:

One is the repetitive nature of some of your nouns.
For example; "Additional intellect, so it would seem to you, has enabled Drones to regard some Drones to be of higher status than others."

Instead of using drones twice, you could have worded it some other way to convey this same message without using the same noun twice in 5 words.

Another one is an issue I think Mara pointed out below, but the 'stats' or 'items' didn't really feel like they mattered. Things like "respect +" seemed to be thrown in but I didn't actually understand how they translated into anything for the story itself.

"You approach Labour Leader communicating that you made a discovery in the fields earlier today and that you believe it to be of importance"

There's nothing necessary wrong with this sentence in particular, but while I was reading and thought up this complaint, I thought that if I saw "Labour Leader" used to describe leader one more time, I would copy/paste that line as an example. I think I may have read "Labour Leader" used as a noun about 300 times in my one playthrough. You could use some adjectives to spice it up, or just a different word altogether. It felt like while you were writing the story, you used a fill-in like "LL says this, LL does this, you take the item to LL" and then just replaced all "LL's" with "Labour Leader." Even if that is the characters name, you should use some different terms for him so it doesn't get as repetitive.

and finally, there were a few minor issues with SPAG/grammar/etc throughout the story. One instance I got was from the very first page:

"You however, do not mind as ever since the Labour Drones were upgraded earlier this year heat had been a much less significant issue than before."

This could be reworded to make a lot more sense, or at least be much easier to read. Something like

"You, however, do not mind. As ever since the Labour Drones were upgraded earlier this year, heat had been a much less significant issue than before."

Or something like that. It was kinda hard to read at some points because of it.

All in all, it was a fine story, and if it's your first one I am very impressed by it. I listed out the problems I had with it, but overall it wasn't too bad. Just work out some of the kinks and you can have a real great piece of work here!
-- TheCanary on 5/14/2020 6:18:31 PM with a score of 0
This started very very promising. I found the language worked well with the theme. Having the three 'pick crops' options is so cool, and the piece of metal totally hooked me. On the downside it ended much to soon and abruptly. On my first playthrough I just tried to be a good robot, and I died pretty unexplainedly. I could have put up with an ending where the robot invests more and more of its cognitive resources into the work and does not bother with high level thought anymore.

On subsequent play-throughs I tried to solve the mystery but couldn't, all paths seem to lead to ending 10.

A longer story where you actually get to know overseer and master a bit better and actually solve the mystery of the metal piece could be truly great.
-- Northwind on 6/23/2020 3:36:49 AM with a score of 0
I still haven't quite figured out what combination of decisions get you which endings, but it's a unique story. Robots seem to be a common subject for utopia and this story gives a perspective I would have never thought to write about. I've enjoyed the endings I've found and recommend giving this story several read throughs.
-- DerPrussen on 5/24/2020 10:56:21 AM with a score of 0
It was a very well done, short, story game. I liked the various ending that came with the respect you accumulated. There were some mistakes in the spelling and grammar, particularity in the odd placement of commas, but they did not take much away from the story overall.
-- greenBean on 5/16/2020 10:52:14 AM with a score of 0
I didn't get to fully explore this yet, but at a glance I like what you've done here.

Interesting little world you've created and this seems like more effort than usual for a newbie game. I spotted a few typos (some pages looked noticeably more rushed than others) but otherwise you've got a good grasp on things as far as the technical aspects go.

I was encountering fake "choices" that all led to the same ending, but I saw there were stats in play and so it's possible they can change things, I just have to poke around a little more when I'm not on my phone to see how much branching there really is here.

Either way I hope to see more from this author, we could really use some more good sci fi on the site.
-- mizal on 5/13/2020 5:25:16 PM with a score of 0
Not bad for a first story game. My main criticism is that you didn't code the objects and the stats, that gives a sloppy clumsy aura to your game.

Then It is too repetitive and based almost entirely on telling, not showing. The Android doesn't seem to have a personality or really thoughts of its own and it is almost impossible to empathize when 90% times are picking crops.

It should have more dialogue between androids and show the growth of the Android. The poem in 19 ends, it could have been the beginning of a very good branch but the game just ends in an anticlimactic no really logic end. Still, for being the first story is interesting. You will improve a lot in no time.
-- poison_mara on 5/13/2020 5:05:33 PM with a score of 0
Show All Comments