While I admit, text adventure games have never been first on my list of favorites, perhaps I wasn’t looking in the right direction. I say this now because at PAX South this year, myself and colleague Travis were able to take a look at Epistory, a game by Fishing Cactus that takes the elements of adventure and the elements of typing to create an immersive experience that I refuse to simply call a “Text Adventure.”

epistory_006 The game immediately enters you into a rather enthralling world made entirely of paper! The kitschy origami-style and art direction is very impressive, as every aspect of the game is told almost like a real storybook. Each chapter flips open page after page until the entirety of the world is open in front of you. You control a protagonist known only as The Muse, who holds the ability to use typing for just about anything. The world is filled with puzzle-solving and enemies who wish to stand in your path, all to be stopped by the power of typing the words that appear on screen above them.

As one progresses, the words become further and further challenging, oftentimes giving longer words based on larger enemies or blockades. A rather interesting mechanic is the use of certain elements granted to the protagonist as the game goes on. These elements are color-coded to their corresponding words, and will appear based on your current situation (red words to fire, blue words to ice, etc.) The thing you have to remember is typing is literally EVERY aspect of the adventure. Even the pause menu has you type “UNPAUSE” to continue playing, and you even type in the name of each upgrade before spending a skill point, which I actually found very charming. The general controls are fluid and responsive, having much to do with how powerful of a keyboard you own, considering the majority of the game will obviously be utilizing it.

epistory_005

After having a chance to sit with the developers, they told me Epistory was very heavy influenced by the adventure style of The Legend of Zelda series, which I could not disagree with.“Our first priority is creating an atmospheric adventure the likes of which gamers have never seen,” says Bruno Urbain, CEO of Fishing Cactus. “With a gorgeous art-style, an innovative control scheme and a fantastic story, Epistory will deliver just that.”

The story was also very interesting, as it is told via text along the “pages” that make up the ground that you traverse, which I was far more interested in that having a voice in my ear. Being that I type regularly in my daily life, I had ease with the combat system of the game, which tasked you with typing words above enemy’s heads before they could reach you in a singular position. The enemies wither away and die after one successfully typed word, however, bonus experience is granted for successfully typing every word above an enemy in succession. This also lends itself to a combo-meter that tracks how many successful words you’re able to input in one sitting before losing a streak.
epistory_004

Overall I very much look forward to this game’s final release. It took a genre that I found to be rather boring and added a flare that created a game I wanted to continue playing as time went on. Epistory is out on early access on Steam for Windows and Mac, where you can follow the game’s development to it’s final build.

Developer: Fishing Cactus
Genre: Typing Adventure
Platforms: PC/Mac
Website: Epistory Game

About The Author

Jordan C
Podcast Host/Staff Writer

Jordan "Se7en" Chambers, Games Journalist, wine lover, Youtube Wizard. A lover of retro games and key lime pie, Se7en strives to bring a little class and sophistication to the gaming world. Now let's start this party. *Starts Crumping violently*