Autumn’s Daughter is a work of interactive fiction about a middle eastern girl, most likely a teenager or young adult, who wants to be educated and live independently, but is forced into an arranged marriage. You are asked to make choices in hopes of helping the girl gain independence from the patriarchy that entraps her.
The story moves quickly, but the narration quickly pulls you into the story and the underlying conflict. When it becomes apparent that it was even difficult for the girl who you are playing as to convince her father to let her go to school, the desire fills you instantly to help this girl become independent of the patriarchy that is so deeply imbedded in her society. While it claims that the smallest choices in this game can have a big effect, I interpreted this to mean that the bolder or bigger the choice the better. This interpretation, I soon found out, was incorrect. I found that choosing bigger, bolder moves had a more negative impact on the direction of the story. Directly defying what was asked of you and taking drastic measures in hopes of gaining independence ultimately only offered freedom in less than pleasing ways, such as committing suicide.
When I made choices that were much more in line with what was expected and only contained subtle moves to break away, I seemed to make the biggest differences. Although I never did become fully independent, my end results hinted that eventually the girl would be able to free herself of the patriarchal constraints of her society.
This work of interactive fiction provides an interesting and possibly different solution to what could be considered a major issue for women in the middle east. Often times people think that the only way to break free from the patriarchy is to take drastic measure and make bold moves. However, by playing this game, we see that the bold moves don’t really get you anywhere and it is the clever, more subtly disobedient choices that elicit the bigger, more optimistic results for this young girl and her future.