Looking for a new dark fantasy interactive fiction game to jump into? The Mask Of The Plague Doctor novel is a fantastic take on the Medieval era, and the plague.

“Stop a deadly plague in a medieval fantasy tale of swords and surgery! Unearth medical knowledge, prevent the town’s purge, or plot your own escape.”

The Mask Of The Plague Doctor novel is a 410,000-word story by Peter Parrish. Like other titles published by Choice Of Games, it’s completely text-based. There’s no graphics or sound effects.

For anyone that’s a huge fan of Medieval history, and in particular—the plague setting, this novel is an absolute delight. The bubonic plague has such great potential for amazing, gripping stories.

This novel takes place in the town of Thornback Hollow, which is currently under quarantine. People can’t sleep, they’re tormented by the disease known as the Waking Death… And the infection is spreading fast.

Your role in the story is a Plague Doctor, and you’ll be working with two others to try to stop the plague—even if that means the destruction of the town itself.

Here’s a list of features from the Steam Page:
  • Play as male, female, or non-binary; gay, straight, bisexual, or aromantic.
  • Select from a range of mask designs, or opt for one of your own.
  • Specialize in surgery, medical theory, or uncanny mysticism.
  • Unearth a cure for the Waking Death, apply traditional medicines, or explore more experimental methods.
  • Respect the local deity, or throw your support behind a banished sect.
  • Work with the Crown’s appointed mayor, aid a revolt, or do your best to avoid political intrigue altogether.
  • Find time for romance with one of your fellow plague doctors, or a dashing mercenary.
  • Recruit others to your medical cause and perhaps leave a lasting legacy.
  • Seek induction into the Fellowship of Royal Physicians, or be happy just to escape with your life.

Will you be able to ease the fear and paranoia of the citizens? What about your relationship with your fellow plague doctors? Will it turn to rivalry, love, or something in between?

Mask Of The Plague Doctor is such an underrated, interactive fiction gem. The writing is absolutely incredible, and it’s such a meaty story to bite into.

The worldbuilding is well fleshed out, and it’s easily one of THE best IF novels out there. The author did an incredible job with the atmosphere and tone. It also does an amazing choice with the replay value, and being choice-driven.

The plot itself is also well-developed, and a nice commentary on our current world of affairs with the pandemic. Already played Mask Of The Plague Doctor? We recommend V:TM—Sins Of The Sires.

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By Camellia Hao Ren

Camellia Hao Ren is an Australian journalist and editor. When they aren't writing, they are usually playing games or reading.

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