This document lists all the entries of the 2022 Annual Interactive Fiction Competition, with their cover art, blurbs, and other author-supplied information exactly as they stood when the competition opened for public judging on October 1, 2022.
To play the games, please find and explore the folder labeled "Games" that accompanied this document. It contains a complete collection of all the listed work. You can always download a fresh copy of this collection from the IF Archive website.
The online version of this page features controls and links that can help you download and play these games individually.
You may also wish to read some further notes about the 2022 IFComp, including a list of the volunteers who helped make it possible, and advice for playing the different kinds of games found among the entries.
How to renew an old story? Put some new circumstances into the game. An old dating sim of mine, made for Twiny Jam is completed with a few new details.
Dating sim • 15 minutes or less • Choice-based •
Sometimes people give pieces of themselves away.
Sometimes they give too much and who they are wears thin.
They become an absence. A hole in the world.
And a terrible Light shines through.
Content warning: Loss, Nihilism, Self-harm (mild), Eating disorder (implied)
Eldritch Mystery • One hour • Choice-based •
Cover art by: Kawanabe Kyōsai
And a mystery as old as mankind.
Religious fantasy • Two hours • Parser-based • TADS
Cover art by: Rachel Helps
You work as a virtual exhibit artist at a digital culture museum. There is a glimmer of attraction to your co-worker. You are married and Mormon.
Anti-romance • An hour and a half • Choice-based •
Ezekiel Throgmeister, commonly referred to by the villagers as The Alchemist, has left you in charge of his currently-running experiment while he attends to other pressing business. Can you succeed in completing his task?
The Alchemist is a large text-only interactive fiction fantasy game, very much in the 'old-school' style. It was written from the ground up for the PC using qBasic64, and has a comprehensive and powerful parser. Included in the game are detailed HELP instructions.
Also included are in-game hints, accessed by the command HINT.
Fantasy Adventure • Longer than two hours • Parser-based • Windows executable
Comedy • 15 minutes or less • Choice-based •
Cover art by: @josiecfig
Your sister is missing, and the answers lie within your dreams.
You just hope you can find her at the end of this all.
Content warning: Drinking. Potential death. Potential drowning mention. Gun mention.
Horror, Dreamy, Modern • Half an hour • Web-based
It's officially hit the fan! Cause, unknown. There's no time to worry about that now anyways...there's a zombie horde approaching! Your job...gather as many survivors as you can and hold out for as long as possible. You'd be the hero if you can find a cure, but digging an escape tunnel might be a good insurance policy.
Zombie • Half an hour • Choice-based •
Cover art by: www.critical-hit.biz
'The tree which moves some to tears of joy is in the eyes of others only a green thing that stands in the way. Some see nature all ridicule and deformity... and some scarce see nature at all. But to the eyes of the man of imagination, nature is imagination itself.' William Blake.
Historical/Fantasy/SF • Longer than two hours • Parser-based • Glulx
The world is ending, and you are still paying rent.
Content warning: optional sexual content (non-explicit), illness, death, transphobia, homophobia
Post-post-apocalyptic life sim • One hour • Choice-based • Web-based
Become the Final Girl or Guy (or anything in between) of your dreams on Blood Island.
You're a new contestant on the hit reality dating show Passion in Paradise, where you can be who you want and date who you want. There's only one problem. Shortly after the season starts, you discover there's an uninvited guest on the island: a killer who stalks you and the others in a plastic Barbie mask. Who will live and who will die? That's up to you and the choices you make. Will you play the role of traditional Final "Girl" or show us something new entirely?
Horror, Dating Simulator, Thriller • Two hours • Choice-based •
For some time you have been waiting for the open day of the Vigamus Academy to visit the building that also hosts the game design course taught by Professor Mark M. Etal.
Just arrived, however, you saw a great shape in motion obscuring the sky: an alien spaceship!
Extraterrestrials have started pouring in by the thousands on the streets of the city, spreading panic.
Sci-fi comedy • Half an hour • Parser-based • Z-code
Cover art by: Arisae (@arisae_art on Twitter)
Set foot in Falaisant, an enigmatic city full of magic and mysteries. You are an amnesiac individual who, in a desperate attempt to find out who you are, hires the only agency willing to take the case. There's only one issue: they are catastrophic.
Follow Cannelé and Nomnom, a duo of disastrous detectives on their chaotic investigation to solve those three mysteries: 1. Who are you? 2. What's your magical ability? And 3. Who erased your memories?
Content warning: Slight gun violence, slight fantasy fictive drug use
Mystery, fantasy, comedy • Two hours • Choice-based • Web-based
Cover art by: Fragile Design Co.
It's the end of the world and everyone's handling it in their own way.
CHASE THE SUN is a game about running, family, and death. It features topics that may be considered surreal, unsettling, or upsetting to some.
Slice of life, surreal, apocalyptic • 15 minutes or less • Choice-based •
Graduate. Become lost. Imagine what's possible.
Magical Realism • One hour • Choice-based • Web-based
Cover art by: Tom Wham
Space Station Omicron-5 in the Deneb system is the biggest Space Authority outpost for many light years. You have the honor of being a member of the Repair Corps, repairing appliances and the like on Space Marine vessels that dock at the station.
Today you have what looks a routine mission. That is, until disaster strikes. Then it's all hands on deck (that's precisely two hands) to save the ship and yourself!
Science fiction • Two hours • Parser-based • Glulx • Download includes additional content
A game that I used as a repository for writing my thoughts; made unconsciously.
Press Z to continue or choose an option.
The image is a pixelated version of http://www.refuges.info/photos_points/1584.jpeg
Content warning: Explicit sexual content and some violence, all purely on the level of text and not images.
Experimental • 15 minutes or less • Choice-based •
Cover art by: David Gürçay-Morris
"To think of 'living' there was to reduce the miraculous to the mundane; one does not 'live' at Xanadu." — Joan Didion, "Goodbye to All That"
The great elvish city of Wild Idyll disappeared when our grandparents were still young, and all of the elves along with it. We each know dozens of stories about this near-mythical place, and hundreds more about the near-immortals who built it; but who can say what is true about a place that barely exists in memory?
Then I met the last person to have lived in Wild Idyll.
A choice-based story about telling stories, leaving cities, and cities leaving us.
Fantasy with a dash of steampunk; slice of life • One hour • Choice-based •
Cover art by: Photo by Greg Rakozy
It's bleak out there. No one would blame you for turning away.
Slice of life • 15 minutes or less • Choice-based •
The sky is grey. The sun is setting. You’ve never been a believer in ghosts, but they still want to tell you all their secrets as you wander their graveyard.
Become a ghost therapist as you explore a graveyard at night.
Content warning: Death, murder, blood, supernatural freaky occurrences, light body horror, mentions of abuse and child abuse.
Horror • Half an hour • Choice-based •
Cover art by: Beck Kubrick
The only thing Bell Park likes more than a mystery is solving it on her own. But when a time-traveling 12-year-old version of herself lands face-down on her rented co-working desk, she'll have no choice but to take the displaced kid detective along on her latest case.
FOLLOW THE TRAIL of a missing heterosexual on the strange streets of Toronto! Investigate a QUIRKY CAST of drag kings, chicken wing enthusiasts, and women in elaborate cat make-up! Thrill in the PERVASIVE ENNUI of your early twenties! Struggle to remember where your preteen self was at with the whole BEING GAY THING!
Will Adult Bell make peace with the figurative and literal ghosts of her past? Can Kid Bell navigate the uncanny world of the 2020s and find her way back home? How's the chicken in that creepy basement food court? These questions and more will be answered in THE GROWN-UP DETECTIVE AGENCY.
From the author of BIRDLAND, KNOWN UNKNOWNS, and BOAT PROM. Featuring art by Beck Kubrick.
Mystery • One hour • Choice-based •
You’ve made some poor decisions and they’ve brought you to this place. The clock is ticking but you still have time. Time to make some better choices. Time to turn things around. Time to get on the right track.
I know you’re probably feeling scared right now. That’s normal. But I want you to know that you have the strength to overcome this. I know you can do it.
Just keep going.
Mystery • One hour • Parser-based •
Built beneath a lake dark and deep, The Hidden King’s Tomb was once well protected against would-be thieves. Between its only marked entrance was built a labyrinth of locked doors and false vaults. All ways were sealed, save one which remained for the king’s foretold return.
But in the centuries since, a sinkhole has revealed a new route to his treasure.
You and your adventuring partner have come to The Hidden King’s tomb like many before you, in search of fame and fortune. You stand over the sinkhole, planning your descent.
But you’ve been tricked! Your former friend has pushed you from the precipice into The Hidden King’s Tomb, plotting to take the treasure for himself. Now you must escape the catacombs, or this tomb may become your own
Adventure • Half an hour • Parser-based • Glulx
Go on a short adventure to assassinate a tyrannical ruler, and maybe you'll learn something along the way.
15 minutes or less • Choice-based •
you can’t take the burden of it anymore, no matter how strong your love is for her. but how do you tell the person you love that you can’t – or won’t – love them anymore?
in between the lies, baggage, and still-open wounds, is she still worth fighting for?
it's up to you to find out.
Dialogue-based narrative, romance. • Half an hour • Choice-based •
We were sentenced to trial by ordeal.
However, there is a way to survive. I taught you this incantation when I got into your head. Now it's time to take a deep breath and say it. Even I can't tell you what awaits us in the mind chambers, for every witch has a different path.
Half an hour • Choice-based •
Sitting on the cold side of Mercury, you've waited two months for space debris to drift through the system, caught in the sun's gravity well. Satellites make for great salvage, and you've earned enough before to scrap by, keeping the Kratos flying. But, this time, nothing so far. The radar is barren. You're running low on fuel, and repairs will be costly after being out here so long.
Sci-Fi • One hour • Parser-based • Z-code • Download includes additional content
Cover art by: Addictivities
A year in the life of a man after the end of the world.
Dynamic fiction, story-based, heavy themes.
Content warning: Suicide, trauma, violence, gore, strong language
Two hours • Choice-based •
A rip roaring, immersive, intense and gripping text based adventure game with a generous serving of humour added at no additional cost. Escape from a dangerous jungle, confront and overcome badies, get through a deadly maze and collect points along the way.
Each scene is described with ascii word art and generous explanations. Hints are available at all stages in the game. The ability to save a game's progress and also to view the character's inventory is also available.
Fantasy • Longer than two hours • Parser-based • Windows executable
Cover art by: JG Heithcock
"There was one present left under the Christmas tree, a wooden box with a tag that said 'I open at the close'"
When my daughter turned thirteen, I made a scavenger hunt to her last Christmas present using a Marauder’s Map of our house. Use the map to find the clues and discover how to piece them together to find her present.
Scavenger Hunt • An hour and a half • Parser-based • Glulx • Download includes additional content
It is time to take the final exam in your magician studies. The only problem is, for all the years you have spent in this prestigious school of magic, you have been really lazy. Really, really, "you don't remember a single spell" lazy. As you enter the examination room, you wonder how on earth you are going to pass this one, and become a licensed wizard? Lazy Wizard's Guide is a parser based text adventure that runs in your browser.
Fantasy • Two hours • Parser-based • Web-based
Cover art by: Mell Davison
The small riverside town of Sangnoire holds a deep and dear tradition: the Saving Day Festival. Each year, the citizens gather and offer their best tributes to celebrate the town and its continued existence. It's a miracle how anything so small should survive. Your serendipitous arrival coincides with preparation, and comes with opportunity. In order to help you assimilate to your new surroundings, your mentor has tasked you with gathering the ingredients and making a cake for the festivities. How badly do you want to get to know you neighbours?
Content warning: implied murder, violence, implied animal abuse
Horror, fantasy • Half an hour • Choice-based •
On my boatride back to my hometown after a failed music career, my insomnia seems to have finally ended, yet the world I have woken up to seems so different than the one I know of, and it talks to me in it's distinct voice known only to me.
Experimental • Half an hour • Choice-based • Web-based
> SHARE all your stories > RECORD all your secrets > ANSWER all your questions > RENOUNCE all your possessions > WAKE UP...
Content warning: Nightmares, Bedbugs, Clowns, and Spiders...Sadness, Madness, Fury, and Worry
Open World Role-Playing Game • Longer than two hours • Parser-based • ADRIFT
Dorian Passer, Anton Chekhov
A fool and his money will soon depart, but a fool and his thoughts will lose more than that!
This is another study in stateful media with an emphasis on narration-based agency. To avoid breaking a reader’s suspension of disbelief, this work eschews story-based agency.
What's this mean for you? An interactive fiction experience that is more "literary" and less "game" made by combining quintessential elements of parser-based, choice-based, chat-based, and templated-based works under a new theory of agency in stateful media.
Study, narrational agency, literary, sci-fi • 15 minutes or less • Web-based
The Burning Bright Spurning Sprite had nothing better to do than dumping you here. Maybe they'll give you a backhanded compliment if you stumble through!
Wordplay/comedy • An hour and a half • Parser-based • Z-code • Download includes additional content
Cover art by: Caliban's Revenge
"The train stops at the rain slick station. The lights are going out on the platform. No one has ever seen the sky from here, but you can tell it's black outside. It will be black here too, very soon.”
Lucid is a surreal adventure game in which the player explores a city at night, struggling to overcome bad memories and outrun the darkness. Break free from the nightmare, or stumble through the streets forever.
Content warning: Emotionaly intense, violence, trauma, cancer.
Surreal Adventure/Exploration • Half an hour • Choice-based •
"CROWN JEWELS STOLEN!" scream the headlines of the Meighsalot newspapers. Anastasia the Power Pony is no ordinary horse, and she's not going to let the Smashy Llamas get away with their latest villainous plot...
Enjoy a delightfully short action-comedy featuring quirky characters, a robust >HINT system, tropical hideouts, and intense fights with kung-fu llamas.
Comedy Adventure • Half an hour • Parser-based • Glulx
You are a community organiser. This is your job, four nights out of five; you sell people hope on their doorsteps.
But your passion for the work is waning, and you're struggling to hit your targets. Can you recruit enough members before the end of your shift? Or will your fallible human body get the better of you?
A short workplace simulator about knocking doors, slacking off, and falling out of love with a movement.
Workplace Simulator • 15 minutes or less • Choice-based •
Please, stop embarassing us.
Content warning: Excessive bleeding, mild gore, social anxiety
Horror • 15 minutes or less • Choice-based • Web-based
"this is for you, a playlist for our adventures"
Track Listing: 1. The Old World Has Ended - Evanescence 2. From the Ashes I Rise - Pitbull 3. Criminales Enamorados - Shakira 4. Hidin’ in Zona - Macklemore 5. p1r@t3pr0ph3tz - Skrillex feat. Deadmau5 6. HEIST - Daddy Yankee 7. It All Goes Right (Alternately, It All Goes Wrong) - Fall Out Boy 8. How Can a Woman Choose? - Adele 9. Jailbirds - Rihanna feat. Jessie J 10. girls Like me - SOPHIE feat. Janelle Monáe 11. HoleDivers (Spelunking 4U) - David Guetta feat. T-Pain 12. Shake It! - Metro Station 13. LUV/FUK - LMFAO feat. Ke$ha 14. Getting Away With It (What She Don’t Know) - Snoop Dogg 15. I Went to Miami and I Didn’t Even Get a BBL - Cobra Starship 16. Gator $kin - Kreayshawn
Content warning: extreme violence, gore, and sexual themes
Adventure, horror, romance, comedy • Two hours • Choice-based • Web-based
Cover art by: Vitalii Blinov
I was heading for a new life and my train brought me here. Nice town: friendly people, corn cuisine, mysterious architecture... So why am I sure that I need to get out of here as fast as possible?
Surrealism • Two hours • Choice-based • Web-based
Ten years ago you had to burgle every store in Stufftown to get your hands on the sought-after doll called Sugar Toes Ballerina so your 7-year-old daughter Samantha wouldn't be heartbroken on Christmas morning. ("Not Just an Ordinary Ballerina," 1999.) Sam is 17 now, and tonight is her senior prom -- but her little brother spilled black ink (accidentally? maybe...) on her prom dress! The clerk at the fashion boutique in Stufftown said on the phone they have the identical dress in the right size, but most of the stores have closed up early because there's a parade downtown. So now it's back to Stufftown to try to get your hands on the Only Possible Prom Dress.
It's not going to be easy. "The Only Possible Prom Dress" is a parser-based puzzle-fest in the classic mode, packed with chatty characters and unlikely perplexities. For best results, the cross-platform QTads interpreter is strongly recommended.
Fantasy • Longer than two hours • Parser-based • TADS
You work at a research institute that studies aquatic life. But you swear you just saw something strange in the water.
Content warning: There are scenes of violence and horror. As such this game contains material inappropriate for young children.
Creature feature, disaster • One hour • Choice-based •
‘Be brave, listen to the voice inside that guides you…’
When Princess Imelda’s seriously ill brother appears to her in a dream telling her she can save him, she sets out from the palace on a quest of danger and discovery that will be the making of a queen.
Fantasy, adventure • An hour and a half • Choice-based •
Cover art by: Me, regrettably
Born to a city of wonders beyond your reach, scarcity has always been a close friend. As a courier, the city’s human infrastructure, you scale its roofworks, evade its constables, risk death every day for others’ convenience — until opportunity crosses your path, and you’re allowed to discover what you believe beyond survival.
Given a scrap of power, how do you reinvent yourself, your relationship to the city, its people? Will it allow you to maintain a companionship based on mutual struggle?
And, beneath it all, from where do the canals in this desert flow?
You'll likely want to play online rather than download. If you’d like to explore alternate endings, it is recommended that you save when you reach the Waterworks Hub.
You’ll have to forgive me the grungy-90s-album-cover art. The intended artist was experiencing some life circumstances!
And for your listening pleasure, here is a selection of sounds which kept me typing: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/0kUtdRfDPcGgf7QkKdqJqj?si=xCM49LqZSKmT2vgAJnFhLA
The Signs of the Sojourner Soundtrack
GoGo Penguin's A Humdrum Star
Portico Quartet's Monument
Ben Lukas Boysen's Mirage
Deep gratitude to my playtesters! Credits included at Prism's end.
Content warning: Not suitable for all ages. Recommended 14 and up.
Contemplative Industrial Fantasy • One hour • Choice-based •
Your housemate and her boyfriend leave for a spring break trip.
Finally, you get a taste of sweet solitude. Just you, hobbies, and cat cuddles.
Or so you think...
As the days wear on, you start questioning your decision to stay.
Navigate the unending night by dragging interaction icons to highlighted parts of the text.
Find a way out of the loop or choose to fall...fall...fall...
[Content Warnings: Unsettling imagery, surrealism, jumpscares, and minor self-harm (scratching an itch from an unknown source)]
Content warning: Unsettling imagery, surrealism, jumpscares, minor self-harm (scratching an itch from an unknown source)
Horror slice-of-life • Two hours • Choice-based •
Cover art by: Midjourney
A session with Madeline.
Probe into the psyche of a frightened young woman in an experimental psychological horror game built around conversation. (not scary)
Content warning: Inappropriate for young kids.
Chat-based, psychological horror, online only • One hour • Parser-based • Web-based
One dream. Fourteen days. Serve drinks and gather enough tips to make it happen in time. Or choose chaos and mix whatever you feel like, damned the consequences.
- Story Mode with 6 endings, 3 difficulty levels for the drink mixing and randomly generated paths. - Arcade Mode with 3 game type (Endless, Perfection and Timed) where you can just mix drinks. You can play with either a mouse or a keyboard (links are keybinded).
Content warning: mention and use of alcohol, mention of violence, lewd language and swearing, animated text and background (can be toggled off)
Bartending simulation, fantasy • Two hours • Choice-based •
Cover art by: Photograph by Alex Berger (virtualwayfarer)
The man on the floor was quite dead, a knife through his heart skewering him to the floorboards. At a quarter to eight, the train would take me from London, where people would be searching for me, into the moors and villages of Scotland.
The Thirty Nine Steps is a thriller, based on the novel by John Buchan, with original music.
Adventure, thriller • One hour • Choice-based •
Cover art by: Sia See
The Tin Mug is a short illustrated children's story of around 10 minutes. Meet the Tin Mug and his friends, Colin the colander, Silvia the spoon and Stu the stew pot as well as several others. Find out what happens in the magic of the Mug's birthday!
Childrens • 15 minutes or less • Choice-based • Web-based
Cover art by: Anthony O
Thank you for calling the Agency Of Neverending Happiness and Clearing Out Monsters From Under Your Bed! We offer assistance in all matters related to your well-being and any supernatural troubles you might have.
Content warning: references to anxiety and depression
Horror, surreal, experimental • 15 minutes or less • Choice-based •
Content warning: please do not use file upload or cheats
Fantasy • Choice-based •
Cover art by: Sangita V Nuli
A runaway bride is forced to confront her deepest desires as she flees the demons of her dangerously religious hometown and considers what - and who - she left behind.
Content warning: Horror, Homophobia, Character Death, Violence, Blood, Injury, Gore, Religious Homophobia, Anxiety, Depression, Disassociation, Complusive Heteronormativity
Gothic, Horror, Surrealist, Romance, Tragedy • Half an hour • Choice-based •
Cover art by: Samantha Khan
Survive as a monster that has taken up residence underneath a bridge, interact with strangers who pass over your bride and see if you can not only survive the encounters, but create a home for yourself.
Content warning: Content warning: Violence, death, gore, and profanity.
Fantasy • Half an hour • Choice-based •
You are a Psychic Brand Ambassador for Schtupmeister Beer. Listen to the thoughts of customers at the local Applebee's and convince them to try your syrupy ale. But will being in these peoples' heads convince you to get involved in their lives?
Sci-Fi Humor • 15 minutes or less • Choice-based • Web-based
Cover art by: Leo Weinreb
The sun is filtering hazily through a partly-cloudy sky on this gorgeous Sunday afternoon. You're feeling lazy and a bit glued to the couch, but your partner insists on you getting some exercise. And although you complain, you have to admit – it looks to be the perfect day for a walk.
Okay Sam, time to go through the usual checklist: Clothes? Phone? Keys? Wallet? Mask? Now where could you have left those...
Explore 20 different endings in this poignant and humorous adventure through the mundane!
Comedic puzzle adventure • One hour • Parser-based • Glulx
Gum E. Bear lies dead in a pool of his own liquid centre, and only Bubble Gumshoe - private eye extraordinaire - can deliver sweet justice on the rain-sticky streets of Sugar City. Explore the area, seek out clues, interview suspects, and finally ACCUSE the murderer. But be careful: you only have one shot...
Thanks to G. Deyke for playtesting!
Contains violence, sex and drug use, all involving colourful candy characters.
Detective/comedy • Half an hour • Parser-based • Glulx • Download includes additional content
Cover art by: Tania Dreams
Middle ages left their footprints on the history of humankind: rich and poor, steel and wood, pest and wild celebrations mixed together in a one wild sauce. Technology was far from our days, but a true power existed: power, that can heal the weak and poison the strong...Witchcraft. However, since magic was primarily perceived as bad, witches were hunted for many-many years... --------------------------------------- Acknowledgements for testing go to: Saranya Balasubramanian, Victor Casañas
Fantasy, 1800s, Scotland, historical, witches • Half an hour • Choice-based •
A time-sensitive mystery puzzle game with multiple endings. As you explore your surroundings, you get the feeling that your surroundings are vaguely familiar.
Puzzle • Half an hour • Choice-based • Web-based
You are one of the unlucky many to enter the maze. Will you be one of the lucky few to escape?
Contains brief strong language and some mature themes.
Parable • One hour • Parser-based • Glulx
You're way behind the last enemy pawn. The enemy king's close to yours. So it's over, right?
Puzzle/logic • Half an hour • Z-code • Download includes additional content