Midnight. Swordfight.

This was really rich. Opulent. I guess games set at masquerade balls drawn on the Venetian carnival tradition tend to get that way. We have a duel at midnight, with a swordswoman much more capable than ourselves; we have outlandish costumes and, apparently, abilities that change with our costumes; we have references to Poe's "Masque of the Red Death", itself the setting of the masquerade to end all masquerades.... We're in a world where gender holds no meaning (in spite of standard pronouns, it seems a little unclear sometimes just who is male and who is female), where pigs fly, and where we can wander backwards and forwards through frozen moments in time.

I'm not sure what going "clockwise" and "anti-clockwise" in time means, but I'm okay with that.

And then there's the playscript. The whole game is presented as though we were improvising along a rough script, with different actions available to us depending on where we are and what we pretend to be. It's an original take on the format, on top of the time-travel conceit, and it impresses me.

I also like the descriptive prose. It conveys the sense of opulence well, but there's also an earthiness to it that makes profanity seem natural. Beauty does not come in the form of lily-white, delicate maiden poets here: it comes in the form of Shakespearan ribaldry and rich, red wine ... more laughing, less thinking.

But I think the thing I like the best is the wide variety of possible endings, depending on the circumstances you can set up for the duel and the single action you have time to take when you finally allow it to begin. You can pretty much do absolutely anything. Seriously. Anything.

Do I have any complaints? Let me think. I guess I could have done with some answers with regard to the death of Matilda, who was found drowned in the fountain at the previous masquerade. Getting to speak to her was a bit of a puzzle, but once we do, it seems completely pointless.

As a breakfast, this is ... eggs benedict with goose eggs and a hollandaise sauce you could stand a teaspoon up in; sides of toulouse sausages and honey-glazed bacon; clotted cream on fresh strawberries; Irish coffee with a shot of Swiss chocolate. Very rich, heady stuff.