Roofed starts out with you in a precarious position: you're dangling from a chimney on a rooftop six stories above ground, looking for spider silk. Your brother's making sure the door to the stairs back down stays open. When he appears below you looking nonchalant, you get a deep sinking feeling.
Like other entries in Casual Gameplay Design Competition #7, Jim Munroe's Roofed is a work of interactive fiction in which you enter commands after a prompt to examine your environment and solve puzzles, moving the story forward. For old hands at interactive fiction, it'll be easy to pick up, but for people playing IF for the first time, it might have a bit of a learning curve. Anton, your brother, provides a simple help system in the form of the verbs and syntax you'll need to complete the story, but the logic of the puzzles isn't always immediately clear.
Analysis: In terms of the writing, Roofed really stands out. The far-future setting comes across clearly just through casual mentions and Anton's quips. He's a compelling character, and an excellent example of a well-implemented NPC sidekick: although he doesn't interact with the environment in any permanent way, his bits of stage business feel authentic and in-character. Unlike some NPCs in other IF games who stand passively and wait for you to do something, Anton wanders around the rooftop, yells for help to no avail, and stares off into the distance, lost in his own head. He feels real, which is impressive considering the limited scope and timeframe of the CGDC.
Sometimes, though, he falls down. Although Anton prompts you to ask him about things, there are very few working topics for him to answer, and his 'I don't understand what you mean' message is actually 'I don't think you're ready to know about that yet.' It fits Anton's character, because he's trying to look like he knows what he's doing, but it comes across more harshly and can make an already frustrated player feel like they're being mocked. I also ran across some other implementation problems when I examined the containment unit: the dynamic description had broken somehow, so it ended mid-sentence. Aside from that, the implementation of the puzzles is solid, and the solutions are creative and reward lateral thinking.
Overall, my only real problem with this game is that I didn't want it to end. I want to know more about Anton and his brother and about the world that they live in. If you're a pro at IF, then it's a nice coffee break diversion; if you're new to the world of text adventures, then it'll take a bit of effort to get used to the interface, but it's well worth it to check out the writing. Roofed is a taste of quality IF that will get you hungry for more.