Let's All Calm Down... (Spoilers in the comments!)
The game makes a good case for Video Games As Art. It's intriguing and makes you want to find out what happens next. And... That's about it.
I read quite a few reviews for this game citing it as the most rewarding and thought-provoking game ever made. They say nothing can match its variety and storytelling-intensity. These people are either 1) lying, or 2) too easily impressed.
The story is vaguely thought-provoking, but it's been done before... The shocking part isn't so much the twist itself as the fact that the game is able to tell a coherent narrative at all through its short, staccato bits of text. Certain things are left unexplained in a good way, others in a bad way, but I shan't say which is which because saying anything at all would spoil everything.
The visuals are simplistic in perhaps the worst way possible. I'm all for minimalism, but come on, using actual letters and keyboard-symbols for the characters? It's kinda distracting and makes everything a bit dense, since you have to figure out what every letter means. Dots and squares would have made much more sense.
The gameplay has three aspects to it, which all feed into each other. They're simple, but somewhat engaging, even if the first aspect is too slow-paced after a while. The simplicity of them is good for the "Video Games As Art" case, since I imagine just about anyone could figure them out, but for anyone who has played a fair share of video games and is already convinced that they are art, there isn't much to see.
Honestly, the only reason this game gets any attention at all is because of what's unlocked when you beat the game. Again, I won't spoil it, but I will say (again) that it presents a strong argument for "Video Games As Art". Is it worth spending two hours playing the game to see? Eh. If you've got nothing better to do, no other artful games to play, books to read, movies to see, or music to listen to, you might as well go ahead. But don't let all the hype fool you into believing this is some grand, magical experience. It's artful, but not special.
Want to know what's unlocked after beating the game? I'll spoil it for you in the comments. If you want to keep the mystery alive? DON'T READ THE FIRST COMMENT. Thank you.