This is a screenshot of Kentucky Route 0 Act I. It features a gas station named "Equus Oils" and a truck driving up to the gas station.

Kentucky Route 0 Act I Review

Genre | Adventure, Interactive Fiction, Art
Developer | Cardboard Computer
Platforms | PC, Linux, OSX

Kentucky Route 0 is an adventure game set in the Southern United States with elements of magical realism. The player controls various characters and at certain points no character by choosing dialog options and exploring the world. This is a review of Act I.

Act I of Kentucky Route 0 introduces the setting of the game and introduces many of the main characters. The player mainly controls Conway in act I. Conway is a delivery driver for an antiques shop and is looking for an address that he cannot locate.  The player controls Conway and other characters by clicking on the spot that they wish him and others to move to. Sometimes the characters drive Conway’s truck, at which point the player is able to explore various parts of a map and discover locations, including hidden locations.

Conway has a dog that the player is able to name, or refuse to name if they so choose. The player has access to dialog options and actions that go beyond what Conway himself would be able to choose: for instance, Conway must guess a computer password which is in the form of a poem, and the player is able to compose the poem, thus allowing Conway to guess the password because the player has decided what the password is.

The game has flat shaded polygonal graphics. There are moments in game where as the characters move, the game highlights different areas of the screen to reveal things that were at one point shrouded in silhouette. The soundtrack is a mixture of electronic music and bluegrass music. There are ambient sounds. The game is often silent or close to silent.

The dialog in the game is naturalistic and presented in a manner that suggests a play. The names of each character appear before each line of dialog and the font chosen is similar to a play’s script. The dialog sometimes also lists stage directions. Sometimes the player’s control shifts away from Conway entirely.