Façade is an experimental AI game for Windows and Mac in which you’re cast as a friend of a yuppie couple, Trip and Grace. You’re invited to their apartment one evening for drinks, but it’s pretty obvious from the onset that they have a seriously troubled relationship. The tense atmosphere gets increasingly hostile as the evening progresses, and it’s not long before accusations start flying around and you’re caught in the middle of a heated argument.
The player has limited interaction with the environment via the mouse, but much of the gameplay is focused upon typing out statements, questions and responses. What you tell the couple and how they respond will directly influence whether or not they’ll reconcile, break-up or literally throw you out of the apartment in disgust.
Each time you play, the conditions will be different. Your responses to events might be interpreted differently and Grace or Trip may or may not have had past affairs. At the very beginning, you are given a chance to choose your name and gender from a predefined list, and this too will have correlation towards the game’s outcome, particularly if your actions are construed as flirtatious.
Occasionally, a title will pop up that will make you question just exactly what constitutes a “game”, and Façade is one such example. It’s surprisingly interesting to try to influence this obnoxious, bickering couple, even if most of the time you’ll just be testing how far you can go before you become so offensive that you get the boot.