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The text adventure has been quietly thriving for years, most notably through IFComp and Twine but also in fascinating titles like Counterfeit Monkey, Hadean Lands, or the recent illustrated re-release of Anchorhead. The Pilgrimage, currently seeking funds on Kickstarter, looks to be another promising addition to the genre, promising a sarcastically-toned journey through the places and peoples of a dying sun-scorched Earth.
You’re a Pilgrim, on a journey a thousand years in the future, across a shattered planet drifting around a sea of sun fire. Whatever your goal was, it may have been important, but unfortunately, you’ve awakened from a drunken hangover with no money and a dead body that the local authorities suspect you of murdering. That’s how your journey starts in The Pilgrimage, and by the game’s own descriptions, things are only going to get worse.
As a text adventure, The Pilgrimage is familiar, given its parser-based nature, but playing the demo demonstrates a charmingly entertaining world with a quite lenient verb system and a dialogue system akin to classic RPGs where you can choose responses (or just ask directly about directions to locations or about items in your pockets). Characters’ dialogue, humorous reactions to your actions (and repeat actions), and myriad details and descriptions fleshing on the lore of this weird world makes The Pilgrimage a text adventure to keep on, both for genre veterans and newcomers thanks to its quality-of-life aspects and less strict design.