The Great Infocom Replay: Seastalker

Okay, I’m not going to really play Seastalker.

I tried, and found it fairly insufferable. I’m not doing this for science or a deep research purpose. It’s for fun, and this isn’t fun. From the very beginning, I had a bad feeling about this.

“Rik, snap out of it!” cries Tip Randall, bursting into your laboratory. “The alert signal is on!”

You look up from your plans for the SCIMITAR, a top-secret submarine that’s still being tested. It’s designed for capturing marine life on the ocean floor.

You notice the alarm bell on the videophone ringing. Someone’s trying to reach you over the private videophone network of Inventions Unlimited!

(lab center)
You’re at your workbench in the center of your laboratory, a small part of the Signes Research Lab in the town of Frobton. The videophone screen looms overhead, with its alarm bell ringing.

Tip is here.

A microphone is sitting on your workbench.

Okay, Rik, what do you want to do now?
❯ answer phone

As the alarm bell stops ringing, a picture of a woman holding a microphone appears, and you can hear her voice from the speaker. But both sound and picture are fuzzy.

(Your score just went up by 1 point!)

What next?
❯ examine phone

You can see a fuzzy picture of a woman on the videophone. Maybe you should turn the knob.

What next?
❯ turn knob

Ah, that’s better! You recognize the woman as Commander Bly, who’s in charge of the Undersea Research Station of Inventions Unlimited, called the Aquadome, just off the Atlantic coast. “Rik! Rik!” she’s saying. “This is the Aquadome calling the Signes Research Lab! We have an urgent problem!”

(Your score just went up by 1 point!)

What next?
❯ quit

This was bad enough. But then this happened over and over:

❯ read logbook
(You’ll find the Logbook in your SEASTALKER package.)

So many things were “go look at the feelies”. I have images of the feelies, but what a drag. It wasn’t fun, it didn’t look interesting, I put it aside.

Next up is Cutthroats — also nautical themed, so I’m wary. On the other hand, it’s by Michael Berlyn, who wrote Suspended, a favorite of mine. (Then again, I noped out of his other game Infidel. We’ll see how it goes.)

Written on January 27, 2024
🎲 games
🏷 infocom-replay
🏷 int-fiction