Common Ground is a captivating and original work of IF that breaks new ground by introducing an intriguing concept previously unseen in the genre (and not seen again until J. Robinson Wheeler's Being Andrew Plotkin). Similar to 9:05, Common Ground starts with a typical, almost boring opener that belies its originality and innovation. You play Jeanie, an American female teenager who is getting dressed up to go out....|
It is not until the game shifts you unceremoniously into the minds of Jeanie's family members that you realize how original and clever Common Ground is. The game allows you to become multiple characters, each with his/her own perspectives that are cleverly communicated via conventional IF format. For example, room descriptions that result from a LOOK command will differ from character to character, each of whom will only see what he or she considers important. For example, Deb, the mother, will immediately recognize Frank's (the father) pair of dirty boots, while neither Frank nor Jeanie notices them (the boots don't show up the in room description when you look at it from either character's perspectives). Needless to say, most puzzles rely on these differences in perspectives, and the effect is quite memorable (even if the puzzles themselves are quite uninteresting). Overall, Common Ground is a fun, innovative IF that everyone should enjoy. Two thumbs up!
Reviewed by: Underdogs