Cragne Manor

cragneCragne Manor is now available!

Considering the number of authors on this game, it feels possible that every person who is interested in parser-based interactive fiction is already part of this project. But I know there are a few exceptions, so for those who aren’t already familiar:

Cragne Manor was organized by Ryan Veeder and Jenni Polodna as a 20-years-later tribute to Michael Gentry’s classic 1998 Lovecraftian horror game Anchorhead. They put out an open call to the IF community for authors to write one room each — without being able to see each other’s work — and they themselves would stitch the results together.

I think it’s fair to say this succeeded more thoroughly than they anticipated. More than 80 authors created rooms for Cragne Manor — some of them small, atmospheric rooms like mine; others packed with story or constituting ingenious set-piece puzzles; still others brief and elegant vignettes. There are some individual author contributions in Cragne that would make respectable IF Comp entries in their own right. Not only that, but Ryan and Jenni did an epic amount of work, with great ingenuity, to come up with a puzzle structure that would make all of those disparate pieces contribute to a functional, enjoyable gameplay flow.

I haven’t finished it — a reflection partly of my supply of free time, but also the fact that this game is huge. But I can tell you already that if you like parser IF, you want to play this. It’s sometimes scary, sometimes disgusting, sometimes funny, sometimes weird, and sometimes all of those at once — but I’ll let you find the horse for yourself. And somehow all that surreal adds up to something greater than the sum of its parts.

Thanks, Ryan and Jenni. This was really, really fun.

11 thoughts on “Cragne Manor”

  1. I’m new to interactive fiction and I’m currently trying out Cragne Manor.
    I’m stuck at the beginning.I can’t seem to find the right commands to open the locker in the restroom.
    I found a code, but it is unclear to me how I need lo use it to open the locker with it.

    1. A common wording for combination locks in IF is “SET [locked thing] TO [combination]”, and that works here. (Occasionally there are
      games, or possibly other rooms in this game, where you will instead need to set the numbers one at a time, especially if it’s meant to be showing you a rotating combination dial where the numbers run 0-99, for instance.)

      More broadly: I am definitely not going to be able to run a general hint thread in the comments because a) I haven’t finished the game myself and b) the volume could get significant. Therefore, you or others seeking hints might like to check out the intfiction help thread about this game:

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