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I very, very nearly quit this game after the opening screen because it was just so heartbreaking. I did set it aside, do some other things, and steel myself before returning.
This is just beautiful. As a game, as a puzzle, as a story, as writing, as a love letter. And, yes, still heartbreaking, but so suffused with beauty and love that the sorrow is worth it. I am so glad I came back to it (though I knew I would, because the writing was so lovely I was not going to be able to stay away).
Thank you for sharing this with the world.
...oh, of course you also wrote "What Heart Heard Of, Ghost Guessed". I also had nothing but positive things to say about that game as well (and said them in the feedback form; I hope they reached you). Fantastic.
Thanks so much. I thought there was a pretty fair chance that no one would play it because the subject matter is just so depressing, and decided I was OK with that. I'm glad you did play, and that you liked it. Thanks so much for the kind words.
And to you and everyone else: it's OK to criticize this game. Really. I don't want anyone to think that I'm immune to criticism because of the personal nature of the story. I worry I won't get helpful feedback because people won't want to say anything negative.
See, if you'd seen some of my other feedback in the IFComp, you'd know I have no issue criticizing things that are personal. ;-)
No, but seriously, there are things I could nitpick--for instance, both parts of getting the ribbon ("lead the cat back to the house" and "put the wood on the fire") felt a little unintuitive; I spent some time trying out various verbs on the cat to see if I could convince it to lose interest in the ribbon. But they'd be nitpicks, because, seriously, this was so very good.