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Slouching Towards Bedlam
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last, slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?
William Butler Yeats, "The Second Coming"

And the Lord said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.
—Genesis 11:6 (the Tower of Babel chapter)

Set in an alternate universe version of Victorian England, Slouching Towards Bedlam casts the player as Dr. Thomas Xavier, an employee of Bedlam Asylum. When the game opens, he's dealing with the recent suicide of one of his patients, a severely delusional case named Cleve Anderson who spoke in tongues during his sleep, claimed to be "infected" by something that altered the very nature of his being, and had ties to an underground group of mystics. As the game unfolds, he learns that perhaps Cleve was not so delusional after all...

An Interactive Fiction game, and winner of the 2003 IF Competition, the game is notable for its extremely immersive and thought-provoking writing. You can play it online here.


This game provides examples of:


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