Story

The year is 2021—or maybe 1602? Hamlet the Younger has just tragically died and Fortinbras the Younger, King of Norway and newly-conquered Denmark, has a lot of cleaning up to do. Elsinore: After Hamlet is an interactive fiction exploration of William Shakespeare's Hamlet as a plague text and a reckoning of Asian American identity during these trying times. Also contains bad puns and glowing text.

Rated T for mild language and depictions of blood & violence.

Features

Play as an Asian American university student juggling society, schoolwork, and mental health under the pressure of a global pandemic and mounting anti-Asian violence.

  • Create a customizable character, selecting:
    • Gender and pronouns (male, female, and nonbinary options)
    • Name
  • Explore the world of Elsinore and make branching choices that directly influence gameplay and how the story unfolds
  • Navigate one of Shakespeare’s most famous plays from an unique perspective and experience the spring of 2021 through someone else’s eyes
  • Befriend or antagonize your favorite characters from Shakespeare’s Hamlet, and earn new allies or make new enemies
  • Discover hidden story content and collect lore about the strange, suspended state of Elsinore
  • Unlock 7 unique endings, some good, some bad, and some...secret
  • Enjoy over 15,000 words of gameplay that offer replayable experiences and story

Credits & Contact

Written and coded by Jinx.  You can follow my future projects (and find more info about the making of this game) on my development blog

Special thanks to Philip Lorenz for four years of his expert guidance through Shakespeare's hand and, as one Danish prince put it so well, the power of words, words, words, and to Elisha Cohn for her tireless support and brilliant advising, as well as the original opportunity that led to the development of this game.

Thank you for playing! Elsinore: After Hamlet is an independent passion project and my first foray into interactive fiction. Your feedback and support means the world to me, and helps me continue working on this game and more to come!

Development log

Comments

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I have no idea what I'm supposed to do once the MC actually starts writing. There is no more interactable text.

(1 edit)

Thanks for playing! The essay section runs on a set of timers. More (interactable) text will appear after a set amount of time; the HTML counter does have a weird reaction if you click away from the game tab after loading the passage, so that may have thrown off the timer. If the rest of the essay passage still doesn't show up, please let me know (preferably with screenshots) here, or on tumblr @lapinlunaire-games :) 

Huh, ok, so I guess my frantic clicking on literally everything to find hidden interactables is what caused it. It does show up if I just wait. Maybe you should reduce the wait time? Also, what's the reason for the wait time?

(+1)

I'll look into it, but the wait time is deliberately an inconveniently long period. It's intended to force the player to re-read the single line and let it sink in, rather than quickly going to the next chunk of text. The discomfort and inescapability of that stasis is meant to convey an alternate flavor of how last spring felt for many Asian Americans.

Hm. Well, there is a part of the game where an ellipsis shows up slowly, one dot at a time, to let the readers know that something else is coming. Maybe you could do that in that section too?

(+1)

How long of a wait period is there? Because I've waited a while multiple times, and still nothing is loading for me. 

Hi there, so sorry for the delay! 

I've tested the updated build on a few different browsers and it seems to be working...you may need to refresh the tab/hit back and then "run manuscript" again. The longest delay is hardcoded at 5 seconds, so it definitely shouldn't be taking too long. Also, if you've previously played and have an old save file from before November/December 2021, please make sure you refresh before starting the game! Sometimes browsers won't load the newest version without that.

Thanks for playing!

Pray tell how long will the wait take?

Hello and thank you for playing! So sorry for the delay in my response - my raven must have gotten waylaid. 

The longest delay in this essay passage is hardcoded at 5 seconds - if you're stuck waiting, try exiting the game with the back button on your browser or refreshing the page. It'll begin the passage again, but that seemed to fix any timing problems when I tested it. Also, if you've previously played and have an old save file from before November/December 2021, please make sure you refresh before starting the game! Sometimes browsers won't load the newest version without that.

Thank you for playing!

I like this story a lot! But I've ran into a bug: I get to the message "Fortinbras raises his chin..." and then the game just stops.

Thanks for playing! It looks like there's an issue with how the game is recording certain player choices leading up to that scene. Could you tell me what you chose to do when you first met Fortinbras and when you saw the bodies

First met Fortinbras: beg

saw the bodies: go back to your room

Thanks! I'm working on getting it ironed out now.