The Watchmaker: Afternoon Thoughts

I’m posting about this game more than it really deserves because I can’t bring myself to binge it. Each session is fairly short, but still requires a post, by the terms of the Oath. Still, I’ve made it past noon! (The game says the time is 12:15 AM, but it’s a little confused.) My latest time-advancing accomplishment was tricking the supervisor into leaving his office so I could ransack it. This gave me the combination to a locked room, a small laboratory full of microscopes and centrifuges and things. The upshot: I now have a syringe. What do I want with a syringe? I don’t know. Presumably it’ll come in useful later, but this isn’t really what I was hoping for when I searched the man’s office. There’s a whole lot of Caesar’s ladder going on in this game. Also, I’m starting to think it may be going by a general rule that each room holds exactly one inventory item. If I’m right, that’ll be a big help going forward, letting me know when I need to keep searching and when I can stop — although there’s danger that I’ll trust the rule too much and stop prematurely.

Getting rid of the supervisor involved a small act of vandalism. It’s really making me think about how antisocial the player’s actions are in this game generally. Oh, you get to do a couple of good deeds, finding lost items for people to gain their trust or whatever. But most of what I’ve done in this game involves wrecking stuff, breaking and entering, and making people’s jobs harder. Just imagine how embarrassing it’ll all be if it turns out that my employer’s information is wrong and the doomsday device is hidden somewhere else.

The other thing I’m discovering is that yes, you really do have to ask every character about every topic. It usually doesn’t lead to anything useful or interesting, but sometimes there’s a vital clue, and there’s no way to tell which combinations are the magic ones. At least the game does us the courtesy of greying out the options you’ve already covered. I don’t always see things greyed out that I know I’ve asked about before, but I’m willing to believe that this is a result of me quitting without saving.

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