The Experiment by Kieran Coghlan
Warning! Review may contain spoilers!
The Experiment is a minimalistic Windhammer Prize 2013 entry. It’s written by Kieran Coghlan who is a regular writer for the competition.
It’s a very short and strange entry that lives up to its title. It is a gamebook that contains neither game nor book. It is unique in that there is no plot and no fourth wall. It would probably work better as a blog post or a philosophical debate. As a gamebook it’s slightly tedious but mercifully short.
The doctor puts his hands into his jacket pockets and pulls out two packets of potato crisps.
‘Now these two packets of crisps,’ he begins, ‘are identical as to how many crisps they contain and
their nutritional value. The only difference is the flavour. The one in my left hand is prawn cocktail
while the one in my right is cheese and onion. Now, we are going to have a packet each. You choose
which one you want and I shall have the other. Which will you choose?’
I would describe this as basically the Matrix with all the cool bits removed. Read another gamebook or Sophie’s World instead.