1999 IF Art Shows


The IF Art Shows were run by Marnie Parker aka "Doe". Pieces in the Art Show aren't usually games in the traditional sense, so creating walkthroughs for them may be somewhat nonsensible, since there's often no way to actually "win". The walkthroughs below (or on their own pages) are by David Welbourn. See also the IF Art Show home page (broken link).

Crystal Ball

I hope you like sestinas about tarot cards, because that's what this piece is all about. There are 22 sestinas to see, each one based on a different card in the Major Arcana. A card is chosen at random each time you push the button, so it might take some effort to see them all. (There's no extra payoff for seeing all the poems except the poems themselves, by the way.)

Some difficulties that I found: Many standard verbs aren't supported, notably "look" and "take". The tent, chair, and table aren't implemented at all. The "again" command refers you to use F3 instead, but that doesn't work at all in Glk Arun for Windows, so I was forced to retype "push button" quite often at the end. Most cards go away after you've examined them, but the Wheel stays in scope. Examining the ball doesn't retell you which card is currently presented. And for some reason, the World gets chosen far too often, which makes me think it's not as random as it could be.

The cards are: Chariot, Death, Devil, Emperor, Empress, Fool, Fortune's Wheel, Hanged Man, Hermit, Hierophant, Judgment, Justice, Lovers, Mage, Moon, Priestess, Star, Strength, Sun, Temperance, Tower, World.

>x ball. x button. push button. x [cardname].

>push button. x [cardname]. (Repeat the cycle of push button and examine card until you've seen all 22 sestinas, or you've seen enough.)


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Considering that this piece features only a single room with a pedestal, pillow, and brochure, you can't expect too much. Even so, it's surprising that the author didn't think of implementing some of the more obvious actions that I thought of, like "touch pillow", "squeeze pillow", or "kiss pillow". And a bug prevents "put pillow on pedestal" from working.

It's possible to earn 15 points, and this walkthrough earns every one of them. For the full effect, make sure to examine the pillow after each interaction with it to see a slightly different description.

>about. i. x brochure. read it. x pedestal.

>x pillow. [+1] take it. [+1] sit on it. [+1] x it. sleep. [+1] x it.

>search it. [+1] x it. poke it. [+1] x it. prod it. [+1] x it. fluff it. [+1] x it.

>pull it. [+1] x it. push it. [+1] x it. eat it. [+1] x it. drink it. [+1] x it.

>xyzzy. [+1] plugh. [+1] x pillow. sit on pillow. xyzzy. [+1] s. quit.

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The Possibility of Life's Destruction

Extremely brief art piece in the style of "The Space Under the Window". Most of the standard verbs, including "restart" and "restore" have been disabled, although "look" and "quit" still work.

There are only three locations, each with a poetic verse for its description. You begin at Metamorphosis. The words "black", "ant", or "youth" take you to Youth; the words "river", "downward", or "spiral" take you to The Downward Spiral; the word "metamorphosis" will return you to the first room. Seeing all three verses ends the piece.

>ant. river.

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About the only thing that you can do is repeatedly spin the wheel to see a madlibbed phrase of the form "The noun verbs adjectively." I started to write down all the possibilities, but after reading the help, decided not to list them here since that would spoil the entire point of the piece. I counted over 20 possiblities for each of the noun, verb, and adjective, and I saw very few repetitions.

>x wheel. spin it. g. g. g. g. [etc.] help. xyzzy. quit.

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