Player Comments on The Road: Carrying the Fire
I read Cormac McCarthy's "The Road" more than ten years ago (I saw the movie too, but the book was far better) and this short storygame captures the mood quite well. If anything, this bit of fan fiction manages to outdo McCarthy in the hopeless despair department, inasmuch as none of the endings offer any bit of hope. At least the novel, from what I call, ended with the faintest glimmer of something ambiguously resembling hope.
If you've read the novel (or seen the movie) you can navigate this storygame quite handily. You know what you're going to find in the house, and what you're not going to find in the gas station. You already know the backstory (what little bit McCarthy deemed worthy of sharing) so you don't need to have it explained again. This storygame is short, terse, and straight to the point.
But if you must know: in the novel, an unexplained event brought an end to biochemistry on Earth. Life is no longer possible--no plants, no animals. The only creatures left are humans, who are subsisting on whatever canned goods they scavenge. And when the Dinty Moore runs out... . In the decade since I read the book, two images of cannibalism still haunt me: one involving the basement of a house, the other a newborn-- well, let's not go there.
This story imitates the tone of McCarthy's novel quite well, with the emphasis on the word "imitate." This is clearly fan fiction, and a school project, but otherwise competently executed in both regards. This story treads a lot of the same ground as the original novel, which is fine for its length; had it been any longer, I would've asked the writer to bring something new to this desolate world.
In terms of branching, I was impressed at first, until I reread it a few times and figured out there are only two primary branches, but multiple ways to get there. A few too many times I was given the option to just lay down and die.
Overall, this was an interesting effort. I do recommend the story, particularly to any fans of dystopian fiction.
on 6/29/2019 11:00:09 PM with a score of 0
Wow. I haven't read a non-featured CYOA as good as this is a while.
The technical aspect of the story is superb, and your imagery is so... real. The distant emotions of the character give the story a hopeless kind of feel, which is quite appropriate. It makes the character seem like she's slowly numbing to the horrors of the world.
In the fight or flee and cannibalistic scenes, you reveal the animalistic side of the protagonist, which is also the side that allows the protagonist to survive. Especially with the cannibalism because it shows that to survive, you may have to do things that are "wrong". With the rotting food scene, you show that everything is rotting, decaying, or dying. Wonderful addition to the atmosphere.
The back story with the brother was amazing. It kind of let us know which ending was the "true" ending too. It added a bittersweet touch to the story and was quite moving.
Like the brother part, you have several scenes which force us to interpret the meaning of things, which adds this depth to the pages.
While there isn't much variation in the story (I played through every page and noticed certain things that always take place.), this story is quite powerful and emphasizes the hopelessness of the situation and the survival aspect of living.
on 1/14/2017 3:02:22 PM with a score of 0
This was a very powerful story. The imagery did a wonderful job to convey such a sense of loneliness and despair. It truly did feel like a empty world, empty but very oppressive towards a protagonist trying to do their best to survive a terrible situation.
I must say that this may be one of the saddest stories I've read so far on this site. The writing did a wonderful job in providing such a crushing sense of hopelessness, but there was always just one dim little light of hope.
This was rather wonderful :)
on 11/1/2016 3:40:32 PM with a score of 0
Not enough variation, way too short. Having no good endings fits the theme, but in a CYOA its important to feel like your choices matter. However, it is very well written.
on 4/4/2018 7:42:43 PM with a score of 0
Damn, that (SPOILER!) cannibalism ending is fucking brutal. Excellently done.
I really enjoyed this storygame. The narration was great, the grammar was fine and there was a real sense of hopelessness throughout. My only complaints are that the deaths didn't feel varied enough, and it wasn't really long enough to build a proper sense of soul-crushing despair.
In addition, the fact that there we no real characters made it hard to empathize with their struggle. I get what you're going for; everyone's a "living ghost" of what they used to be, but names and faces usually make it easier to feel for them. Part of what made the movie (and I assume, the book) so hard to watch was the fact that they were real people; not just a faceless automaton, driven by 'You do x' statements.
I gave it a 6/8. Solid game with limited emotional punch.
on 1/12/2017 7:13:04 PM with a score of 0
Awe man I loved it..though I didn't get very far but still it was beautiful how I died..don't take it the wrong way.
I'd highly recommend checking this out its such a story though I wish it was longerrr!!!! (-^-^-)
on 10/28/2016 9:21:12 PM with a score of 0
This was really good, and the length is good even though I thought it would be longer. This is really good and I hope you write more.
on 9/19/2015 11:56:00 AM with a score of 0
I read The Road a few years ago after watching the Movie. Book is a masterpiece. This Story Game, pretty good too! Great job!
on 11/13/2014 5:30:12 PM with a score of 0
Well... It was a great story. I really wish there was an ending that didn't involve dying.
on 11/12/2014 3:37:35 PM with a score of 0
Really cool. Short though.
on 11/11/2014 11:06:47 AM with a score of 0
I will stay humane!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
on 11/11/2014 10:19:16 AM with a score of 0
I think this is the only truly epic fanfiction I've ever read...
on 11/11/2014 7:55:42 AM with a score of 0