Façade (PC : INDIE)
Release Date: July 5th, 2005
Developer: Procedural Arts
Genre: Adventure - Interactive Story
Posted: March 13th, 2006
Last Updated: December 1st, 2006
Latest Release: 1.1
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Some would say that Façade is not a game, but rather an experiment of interactivity. Personally I think it's both. Façade is freeware and independent interactive story game. What this means is you will guide your character (one of many pre generated male and female names) around in a room with two other characters, Trip and Grace. They are a very argumentative couple that you must try to help or worsen, depending on how you want to play. So far, this game sounds kind of dull, but here's the kicker: you create your own dialog from scratch and they respond based on what you type out to them. This game hosts a very complex text parser that the characters are linked to and will respond physically, emotionally and verbally with whatever you type.
There is literally thousands of possibilities of outcomes that you control, although I suspect there is some randominity involved as well. There is also plot keywords that you learn through playing it a through a number of times. I won't ruin the surprise but you will learn some very interesting things about their life if you go in the right directions. The funny thing about this is: when you go through the game once and learn some of these keywords, and then mention those keywords in a new game, because they never talked about it before in the new game yet, they will be very surprised that you knew about it. Their reactions are very interesting to some of these learned words.
Looking at the graphics you wouldn't expect this game to require so much system resources, but this game is not graphical driven, and should not be based on such. It is all about the interaction and the complex algorithms that make the game fun to play, which in turn needs a lot of resources to pull off. I imagine there is thousands and thousands of quality speech audio files included in this program. Hence the big download, and the long decompression time. Not to mention they personally recorded handfuls of names to go with the game that you can pick as your character, which is turn means that they will actually say your name, almost perfectly synched in their main speech. I added that this game takes an hour to complete. The truth is you can't actually ever complete the game. There is just way too many things to try and experience, and this game isn't really about winning or loosing as such anyway.