Return to Vinia

Player Rating5.54/8

"#169 overall, #17 for 2015"
based on 128 ratings since 04/08/2015
played 1,327 times (finished 155)

Story Difficulty3/8

"trek through the forest"

Play Length4/8

"A well spent lunch break"

Maturity Level3/8

"must be at least this tall to play"
Contains content that may not be suitable for persons under age 10. If this were a movie, it would probably be between G and PG.

You are the prince of the beautiful country of Vinia. After being kidnapped by assassins, you find yourself lost in the dangerous land of Niravia, the country bordering your own. You must use your skills to overcome any obstacles you may face and find your way back home.

Player Comments

From the story page (before hitting “play”), I was intrigued with this story. The author’s notes beforehand are concise and to the point. There isn’t any overwhelming backstory or history before. It’s a minor element, but I must give credit where credit is due. In a lot of ways it reminded me of my own storygame. Alright, enough shameless plugging let’s get to Vinia.

I initially liked the use of pictures, especially on the opening page, but eventually grew tired of them. It was almost as if they were included just to have them rather than add to the story. For example, you probably don’t need to have a picture waking up in the dark because it’s dark. If you can’t see anything, don’t put a solid black image in. Some of the pictures were awful… the “who are you?” one for another example.

Things that stuck out to me:

-Maybe I missed something, but isn’t it strange the prince would aspire to be in the Royal Guard? Shouldn’t the Royal Guard be protecting him?

-The hijacking of your kidnappers was a cool. It was a minor twist that brought me deeper into the story.

-Niravia sounds too much like Nirvana. I kept thinking of the band every time it was mentioned. DIalla sounds too much like Diallo (the basketball player). Kept thinking of him every time that name was mentioned too.

The writing itself was good quality. No major grammar errors stuck out and distracted from the story. The pacing, although brief, fit the story framework nicely. The choices seemed to have a lot of “false” links such as many options that all led to the same place. It didn’t bother me much, but I know of a few members of this site that hate that.

This storygame did many things right. Kept good pacing, grammar, and flow. That being said, there wasn’t much that was memorable; there weren’t any characters or action sequences that grabbed me into the world. At a glance it seemed like a high quality game, but looking deeper it ended up feeling rather shallow. Still, I must applaud the author for fine tuning his storygame and it’s clear he put a lot of work into it.
-- ninjapitka on 5/30/2019 11:01:36 AM with a score of 0
Impressive, the writing and overall flow to the story was both cohesive and paced rather well. There were some moments of linearity, but the story never failed in providing interesting choices and dialogue to read.

The premise itself was something I found interesting, being a royal who's suddenly attacked and kidnapped one night and must now brave certain dangers in his journey to return to his homeland. Although it wasn't a long journey to reach that goal, it's definitely a well-written one at the end of the day.

The only thing that I felt could've been improved somewhat was the length, because I would've enjoyed reading much more. There's certainly obvious skill and a good grasp of vocabulary that's displayed here, one that I feel would shine rather well in a larger adventure.

I almost forgot, the illustrations were also quite good as well. They never felt out of place and fit well with the story that was being told, so good work on that front as well.

Overall, this is a very impressive storygame. One that I genuinely found myself enjoying as I read.
-- TharaApples on 3/6/2017 10:12:02 PM with a score of 0
I found this very well written and interspersed with a nice selection of illustrations that really helped set the mood. There were always plenty of choices (even if some of them led to the same place), except in places where it would make sense for the story to be linear, like in a fight sequence where the wrong move means death. All in all, it was an nice balance of storytelling and danger that I enjoyed playing through.

The story is not overly long, but does have a very satisfying ending. I only wish it was longer because the player character is quite a badass and it would have been fun to see what else he could accomplish.
-- the_quiller on 2/27/2016 2:50:01 PM with a score of 0
It was a good story!
-- don'tmindme on 5/23/2020 9:49:14 PM with a score of 0
The story was good overall but I felt that there were some pieces missing and the story could have been continued further. You never get the chance to meet and pay back the people that helped you return home safely again, and the story ending feels very rushed after what seems like too quick of a journey back. The descriptive language helps paint a crystal clear image of the set environment, even to the point where images are not really required for your imagination to picture the scene.

The ending could have been explored further through a war against the other empire or a short story of you becoming a successful soldier for example, rather than finishing with a few paragraphs summarising your victory over the enemy (besides the one ending where you lose).

Overall I think it’s a good story to play through if you only have 20 minutes or so to burn through and nothing else to do, but compared to the other similarly rated stories this is less than I expected. Thanks for the story still :)
-- Crvs on 4/10/2020 9:28:04 PM with a score of 0
IT WAS THE BEST! GREAT GRAMMAR AND STORY PLOT!
-- FATBOY13HARHA on 2/28/2018 4:57:46 PM with a score of 0
I read this to my mom and we played it together over the phone, it was super fun!!
-- Evieseriously on 12/22/2017 10:42:50 AM with a score of 0
"You decide to get even with the King of Niravia. poison wine


Despite the fact you have no royal assassins like the Niravian Crows, you know you can be deceptive if you want to be. You send a letter to Niravia inviting the royals and nobles to a large peace-making ball in Dialla under the guise that you and your parents want to improve relationships with Niravia and forget all that's happened in the past.


Luckily the bait is taken, and you have a spy poison the King of Niravia's wine at the end of the night, and he is found dead the next morning. You then banish the rest of the royal family and you personally take control of Niravia and all of its assets. With the guidance of your parents, you help make the country prosperous and peaceful, although it still has its rustic charm.
The end."

Well, if you are promoting for the least number of casualties and deaths without depleting much military men and resources from both countries then hire the crows to do the job instead! ;)
-- TestingJest on 12/1/2017 5:30:34 AM with a score of 0
to short....
-- erg on 3/14/2017 12:03:40 PM with a score of 0
I really like it. The descriptions of the locations are concise and helpful while the pictures help convey the full meaning. The actual plot is interesting but logical, smart choices are rewarded but dumb choices lead to your death. I just feel that you die very quickly after discovering a threat, so it's very easy to go back and make the right choice. Another thing that bugged me was the fact that at a crossroads, one choice is guaranteed death because you didn't know what you were doing and went the wrong way, although I went that way on purpose…

But overall it was really nice and while it was long, it was a good story and I hope to see more from you!
-- WizzyCat on 3/13/2017 8:47:43 PM with a score of 0
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