Game Chef Review 47: QRC ICYMI by John Yanush (Take 2)

Ingredients: 7 [Dream (3), Abandon (2), Dragonfly (1), Stillness (1)
The illusory dream world inherent in this game echoes Hindu or Buddhist thought, the other ingredients are also distinctly mentioned in the text, with abandon playing a larger role in it's context of whether or not you wish to abandon your dreams.

Theme: 6
The game does everything and nothing, it has the potential to engage everyone, if they are able to pass the basic barrier of entry. That barrier is different to the standard gaming barrier, and therefore the game generally fits the criteria of a different audience. The actual game once you get through the barrier drifts back into the freeform play style common to so many minimalist games.

Would I Play This?: 6
I'd definitely incorporate this into something else. I'd incorporate it into many things. As it stands, it could so easily work as a metagame attached to numerous other concepts... symbiotic, parasitic... But trying to play it on it's own; that, I'm not so sure about. Maybe once...but that once could quite possibly be the rest of a lifetime.

Completeness: 6
This design makes life itself a game, but does it in a very open and nebulous manner. It would be impossible to quantify all of reality in a set of rules, so the effort here is to not even try. Brilliance, or laziness? Hmmm... Undecided. There are enough pointers that a decent gamer could get something workable out of it, but there is a lot missing. It's more an exercise in imagination than anything else.

Innovation: 8
This is unlike any other game I've seen so far. The execution is novel, but the game itself is a freeform of the type I've seen many times before. It feels like all set up, and then...

Output Quality: This breaks the marking rubric [approximately 6]
I'm giving this a vague 6 because the Language is generally fine (except for one noticeable spelling error), the layout is basically null and void due to the encoding into a QR code, and similarly no pictures could be added in due to this coding format. This could have been remedied by directing the user to a custom website.

Overall: 65% Credit [21+12+6+12+8+6]
The vast majority of marks in this game come from the innovative use of the QR code, it refines the potential audience, it adds a layer of mystery and inherent barrier to entry. It makes you feel like you've opened a mystery... But once you get in there, there isn't much. I'd love to have seen the game open up to a web page like +Steve Dee's Dragonfly entry or Federico Danelli's Drifted entry.


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