Jeremy Freese (2008)

In Violet you play a grad student that needs to finish his dissertation. The game takes place in a single room, and is written from the omnipresent voice of your girlfriend chattering in your ear. It tries to justify this at the end, but the overall feel is annoying.

The entire game is a huge meta-puzzle, where all you want to do is write your thesis, but there are 10,000 things getting in the way. Not only is it ridiculous, but it's like trying to get the Babel fish, only on steroids. On top of that, the puzzles aren't even properly clued. Eventually I lost faith in them and just played off the walkthrough. The game also has a dual personality going on. It makes you feel bad for not writing the paper, but then it's the very thing that's standing in your way. I found this game frustrating.

The game is solidly implemented, with several beta testers listed, and there seems to be a fair amount of agency; but I do think it could use a few more synonyms to smooth things over. Also, having a bookcase and cabinet becomes confusing in one of the puzzles and it would probably be best to remove one. But if you were going to remove anything, removing half the puzzles would make the game a little more palatable.

This is an under clued, too drawn out, ridiculous meta-puzzle. Some of the back-story is nicely done, but the game can't be completed without the walkthrough. The code is solid as a rock, and I'm sure a lot of time went into it, but the overall design completely failed in my opinion. I can't recommend this one.