Author Topic: Grim Fandango and Day of the Tentacle remastered versions ing cheap on PS4 store  (Read 7056 times)

Jerzy Bondov

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I'm pretty sure the number of people who've completed Grim Fandango without consulting a walkthrough or such is in single figures.

It's fucking great, though, isn't it? I can't remember how I first played it, but at some point my girlfriend of the time made me a copy of hers and, apart from it crashing quite a bit (the PC version was notoriously buggy in places), I enjoyed every second exploring the world of the dead. Great stuff.
When it came out I played right up to the puzzle where you have to (Year 4 Rubacava puzzle solution spoiler) get Glottis to vomit jelly into a garage and then freeze it without a walkthrough, and then didn't need it again for the rest of the game. When I played the Remaster I somehow got stuck on the same bit. I could remember the solution but not how to get it all to come together.

The voice acting in Grim Fandango is (I think) the best in any game ever. Voicing the main character of an adventure game must be a pretty thankless task, standing there for hours saying shit like 'Hmm, I don't think that's right' and 'I can't reach it', but Tony Plana nails it. Here's a fact for you fact fans: He's in Seinfeld, playing another Manny

For anyone interested in playing some decent adventure games, here's a list of some of my absolute favourites...

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* Day of the Tentacle Remastered - Lots has been said already.  My absolute favourite adventure game of all time.  Play it!

* The Monkey Island series (1-3.  I wouldn't really bother with 4 and 5) - The most renowned series of adventure games out there and with good reason.  Genuine classics of the genre.  The most fun you'll ever have pretending to be a pirate, whilst cooing at the second largest monkey head you've ever seen!

* The Gabriel Knight Series (play the original VGA version for the first game, as opposed to the iffy remake) - A trilogy of games revolving around the paranormal.  There's some quality writing to be found here from genre favourite Jane Jensen.  It's interesting to play through the series in order, as the technology of each game reflects the standards of when they were produced - VGA for the first game, FMV for the second and 3D for the third.

* The Longest Journey - A beautifully written adventure game, one of the best ever in fact and featuring an incredibly rich fantasy world to explore, full of interesting characters.

* What Remains of Edith Finch - A stunning, albeit short experience.  It takes a couple of hours to complete but the memories will last a lifetime.  Art.  Pure art.

* Thimbleweed Park - Ron Gilbert's (of Monkey Island fame) triumphant return to the adventure game genre.  A colourful cast of characters investigate a murder in this comedic adventure of epic proportions.  The developers have updated the game several times since its initial release, adding such things as a fully functional arcade.  A real labour of love from a couple of pioneers of the genre.

* The Tex Murphy series (start with the third game in the series; Under a Killing Moon - skip the first two. They've aged badly and you don't need to play them to understand the third game) - One of the few FMV games which actually benefits from the technology and a vastly underappreciated series in general.  This series has a real cult following (of whom I count myself among - I pledged £150 to the Kickstarter for the 5th game in the series).  Those who've played the series, love it.  Everyone else remains sadly unaware of what they're missing out on.  Please do allow me in indoctrinate you into the cult.  The series revolves around a future noir series of investigations into shady goings on, by a gumshoe (played brilliantly by co-developer Chris Jones) living in a post apocalyptic LA.  Part comedic, part dramatic, all brilliant.  Featuring a groundbreaking for its time 3D engine.  As fun today as it was back when it first came out.

* Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis - The real Indiana Jones 4!  Nuff said.

* Fran Bow (and its spiritual followup Little Misfortune) - A tale of psychologically scarred little girls going on an adventure seeping with darkness, as they tread the thin line between reality and the fantastical.

* The King's Quest series (play the free lovingly made, fan produced AGD remakes for the first 3 games in the series) - The jewel in Sierra's crown, if you'll pardon the pun.  Classic swords and dragons fantasy stuff.  The AGD remakes serve as a perfect introduction.  Part 4 is a bit of a headache with its old school typing interface but parts 5 and 6 return to point & click loveliness.  A word of warning though; save early, save often!  Oh, and avoid parts 7 and 8.  They are utter dogshit.  The rest are golden though!

* Beneath a Steel Sky (now freeware) - A marvelous science fiction tale, by British developer Revolution Games.  That Britishness pervades the game's world.  A flawed game in some respects, but also very memorable and brimming with personality.  A man with a secret past explores a dystopian city to investigate those who killed his tribe and kidnapped him.  Featuring one of the most lovably sardonic sidekicks ever; a little robot named Joey.

* The Broken Sword series (1, 2 & 5 - skip 3 & 4 - they're crap and you don't need to play them to understand 5) - I'd say that the Broken Sword series was adventure gaming's answer to Indiana Jones but the two official Indiana Jones adventure games already have that covered.  Still, this series of games is the next best thing.  Really fun and engaging globetrotting adventures with gorgeous hand-drawn art.

* Sam and Max Hit the Road - Bizarre, enthralling satirical lunacy featuring a dog and rabbit duo of freelance police, with a real penchant for violence and an unorthodox approach to solving cases.  An absolute must for any self-respecting adventure game player.

* The Dig - A dramatic sci-fi tale conceived by Steven Spielberg, about a team of astronauts flung into the farthest reaches of space and onto a seemingly dead alien planet.  One of the most atmospheric games of all time.

* Grim Fandango Remastered - Whilst the puzzles can be frustratingly obtuse; the world, story and characters ensure that this game is an absolute MUST PLAY.  If you a games player and you haven't played this game, then I tut at you.  This is gaming narrative at its absolute finest.

* The Last Door (seasons 1 & 2) - A loving homage to Lovecraft's works with a spellbinding minimalist approach to graphics, resulting in the player filling in the blanks within their own mind, much like reading a novel.  One of the most thought provoking horror games on the market and one which respects the player's intelligence to not have everything spelt out for them.  A genuinely creepy and unnerving game.

* I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream - An adaptation of Harlan Ellison's classic short story of a computer AI gone mad, ruling over the last five survivors of the human race; subjecting them to an eternity of reoccurring deaths at the hands of their worst nightmares.  As unforgettable as it is harrowing.  Harlan Ellison provides the voice of the malevolent AI and is superb in the role.  An absolute must for horror and science fiction fans.

* Full Throttle Remastered  - One of the coolest games ever made and with a rocking soundtrack to boot.  A tale of bikers, a world gone bad and exploding bunnies.

* The Blackwell series (starts with The Blackwell Legacy - the first of five games) - A charming and often moving tale of a woman and her ghostly pal, traveling the city and helping the conflicted specters of the recently deceased to move onto the other side in peace.  Great voice acting and well thought out puzzles ensure that you'll have a good time with this award winning series of games.

* The Ben Jordan Case Files (free independently made series of adventure games) - Seriously underappreciated series of games.  The first couple of games are very amateurish in production values but they get more and more professional as they go on and the developer gets more skilled at making them.  Really well designed puzzles abound within this thoroughly engaging series of paranormal cases to investigate. 

* Kathy Rain - Something of a homage to the Gabriel Knight series.  A short but sweet adventure game revolving around a young woman's investigation into strange happenings.  Gorgeous pixel art and well designed puzzles aplenty.

* Dropsy - A strange and colourful adventure game about a grotesque clown with a heart of gold.  Featuring a unique interface, whereby you have to interpret what characters are saying based upon symbolic pictures.  A stunning art style perfectly compliments the bizarre and charming world in which the characters exist.

* Machinarium - A dialogue free tale of a world inhabited exclusively by robots.  The puzzles can be very tricky in this game but the imagination on display is awe inspiring.

* Toonstruck - A sort of inverse Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, featuring a live action Christopher Lloyd being sucked into a cartoon world of his own creation, which is slowly being corrupted into perversion by a sinister villain voiced by Tim Curry.  Also featuring a sidekick voiced by Dan Castellaneta (Homer Simpson).  Puzzles are on the tougher side of things but it's worth persevering for the sheer joy of exploring this deranged and subversive cartoon world with its wicked sense of humour.

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I believe that near enough everything I've listed is available through GOG, so that's handy.  Seriously if you're looking for a adventure game to play, take your pick from above.  I wholeheartedly recommend them all.  Some of the absolute best adventure games that I've ever played and I've played a LOT of adventure games.

All great recommendations. I would like to add Sam and Max Save The World Remastered (out on Switch now) and the Space Quest and Police Quest collections.
Loved those games when I was younger.

Toonstruck is such a great recommendation. A weird and wonderful game. Difficult but somehow managed to finish it without a walkthrough years ago.

When it comes to recent games I quite enjoyed Blacksad even though it's quite buggy. Story and puzzles are pretty fun.

Eddie, have you ever played any of the Runaway Games? I remember these coming out years ago and they looked great but the reviews were all over the place.

I have a theory that Grim Fandango inadvertently killed the genre.

90s adventure games managed to hit a market that other video games didn't. Their gentle pace, simple but appealing graphics, straightforward mouse controls and the fact that you can't die or lose progress meant lots of non-gamers played them - people who otherwise found games stressful/inaccessible/annoying/whatever.

But Grim, with its keyboard controls, was fiddly and technical. It was the first LucasArts adventure my sister just didn't enjoy, and I am taking my sister as a barometer for the global adventure game market, OK, I think this is totally reasonable. And then for some reason they repeated the mistake with the next Monkey Island, which also sold poorly.

And then it was basically all over for adventure games.  I know they still exist, but they're sort of weird and niche, and very few of them, surprisingly, actually follow the LucasArts formula. (They're also, for the most part, not very good.)

Jerzy Bondov

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I was just thinking about how much I love the way in Monkey Island 2, if you inspect something boring and irrelevant, Guybrush always says it's nice. 'Nice bed' for example. It just tells you straight away that it's not worth arsing around with it.

Zetetic

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I've generally found stuff out of Wadjet Eye Games - the Blackwell series, Unavowed, Shardlight - is generally a lot more respectful of not fucking the player about with padding or uninteresting fiddly puzzles than stuff from previous decades.

I was just thinking about how much I love the way in Monkey Island 2, if you inspect something boring and irrelevant, Guybrush always says it's nice. 'Nice bed' for example. It just tells you straight away that it's not worth arsing around with it.

LucasArts developed an awful lot of interesting design patterns over the 90s, and established a formula that (as I say above) I'm surprised hasn't been used for dozens or hundreds of games since. The interesting thing with their formula is that no matter how bad or obtuse the puzzle design is, you can basically fix anything with the writing.

So take the infamous "use the monkey on the pump" puzzle in Monkey Island 2. IMO it's not a great puzzle (evidenced by the fact that almost no one figures it out alone), but it could have been, if Guybrush had said, when examining the pump, "If only I had some kind of monkey wrench", thereby allowing the player to establish the pun logic themselves.

Zetetic

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I know they still exist, but they're sort of weird and niche
I always find it difficult to compare stuff between 1985-2000 and now, because notable "niche" sales in 2021 are pretty much "Lucasfilm Games' target figures" in 1990.

Yes, well, this is another case where I am speculating out of my bumhole and could be wildly off, because by many metrics adventure games are alive and well and not niche or weird at all!

My biased, crappy, limited one-man perception was that in the 90s they were one of the "main" computer game genres, and I still meet many people who reminisce fondly about Monkey Island who haven't really touched a game since (and didn't touch much else at the time either) - whereas adventure games today feel a bit of a sideline and odd fractured genre.

i'm just going to bow out respectfully and acknowledge that I was doing was I honestly believed was a laughably obvious wind-up

Laughably obvious compared to your usual style of abruptly jumping into a thread to post a terse, brusque opinion in a "fuck you, I'm right" attitude? Hard to read satirisation of your usual behaviour by just repeating your usual behaviour.

madhair sitting down to play a game hoping he's going to have an absolutely fucking miserable time, literally rubbing his hands together with glee at the prospect he might play for six hours and have all his progress wiped out for some impossible-to-predict reason, that's his idea of pure bliss that is

I bet he rigs up the emulator so he has to actually physically swap floppy disks every 5 minutes and sit through loading screens, the more disks the better, even the later CD-Rom games, bring them in on punnets of floppy disks! They are his bread and butter, literally, ham and cheese between wedges of floppy disks, he's gone disturbed.. further disturbed.

Thimbleweed Park is easily one of the best adventure games of the last couple of decades, so you're in for a treat.  The ending is shite though, so be prepared for that.

After the Monkey Island 2 ending debacle, Ron Gilbert should have learned. He then back-tracked and said he had the real Secret Of Monkey Island worked out all along, though conveniently he can't tell you that now because Disney own the rights, and since they also own the Pirates Of The Caribbean franchise, not much likely they will launch a third proper Monkey Island based on the franchise their franchise rips off based on their original theme park ride.

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Saying that Broken Age is the best adventure game is like saying that Chex Quest is the best FPS game.  I find it difficult to comprehend that anyone who's played all (or even the majority) of the oft recognised classics of the genre would name Broken Age as being the best of the lot.

I backed Broken Age, but then didn't much like the art style in the updates, so I took a while to play it once it came out.. Meh it was alright, the two character in opposing worlds dynamic was sort of DOTT again but there wasn't much interaction between both characters aside from flipping between them in 'chapters' it would have been more interesting having puzzles that spanned between the two necessitating the character switch or at least clues appearing in one world helping you in the other like in DOTT. The 'twist' I honestly didn't see coming but it was probably obvious, I thought it was a nice detail. And yeah, that puzzle where you had to physically write shit down was super annoying, there should have been a thing in your inventory for putting down the details, the puzzle itself was obvious and easy, just you had to remember a load of information because the computer would ask you for random details. That really wasn't on for a modern puzzler.

moon logic wank.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cat_hair_mustache_puzzle

Basically there can only be two types of puzzles, logical puzzles, like use the key with the door, or puzzles that make sense in the logic of that world.. use rubber chicken with a pulley in the middle on rope. The second one I only got from faffing around because at the age I played Monkey Island I didn't know what a pulley was, and I still don't know if it was some kind of French pun on chicken being poulet. Puzzles that don't lead you along with some inherent element of logic are just arse though, I remember I got stuck getting past the troll on Melee island and having to pay the 'troll toll' I just kept handing him things, eventually he accepted the red herring, in fact if I paid attention he did ask for something "that would attract attention, but of no real importance". As has been said though the monkey wrench puzzle is wank because there's no clue like that.

I have a theory that Grim Fandango inadvertently killed the genre.

It most certainly did, it was because at the time it came out all of gaming was going through the problem that 3d Gfx cards were becoming the standard because of Quake et al and those types of 1st person games were obviously selling like hot cakes. So developers started trying to all change to 3d even if it didn't serve the game, having a 3d engine for a static camera adventure game is just insane, replacing all that nice hand drawn art with flat textures and simplified character models. Full Throttle sort of had it right in that they used elements of 3d for vehicles and things like that. It was a stupid decision to go 3d but what was even stupider was ditching the point-and-click interface, I literally don't know what possessed them. It was the first Lucas adventure game I didn't buy based purely off that shitty interface and I really wasn't keen on the sharp-depature overly cartoony art on Curse Of Monkey Island and a lot of the humour seemed to be missing, I never played any of the later Monkey series but on seeing bits of them years later they looked fuck-awful.

Anyway, what with sales of Lucasarts adventure games going down the pan, Sam & Max 2 and Full Throttle 2 were cancelled, and with them being arguably the best producer of games of the genre obviously a lot of smaller developers and publishers thought it would be a lost cause shoveling any money into an adventure game when 1st person shooters was where it was at.

Exactly the same thing happened at roughly the same time in the movie industry with animated features all moving to 3d after Toy Story, it pretty much killed the chances of any smaller studios creating a big hit with a traditionally animated cartoon because all the kids liked 3d now. I think adventures were also hampered by the console market as a controller just isn't a good interface for point-and-click obviously, and they've all but taken over the games market.

It was exactly the same as when games jumped to the CD medium, every game had to shove in FLV now, adventure game characters have to now feature a badly bluescreened and cut out actor walking around a set like in Knightmare and every 2 minutes we need a full FLV cutscene, because y'know, we NEED to fill up the disc. Just because the technology is there doesn't mean you have to abuse it.

Discworld was alright I suppose, helped immensely by the voice cast obviously but I didn't get on with the puzzles and I thought maybe you had to be a Pratchett fan to really get it, I'd never read anything by him.

A few games that haven't been mentioned, Darkseed and Darkseed 2, any fans of those? I never played them beyond the demo but even though I liked Giger's art I was put off by how monochrome it was. There was also a few HP Lovecraft one sThe Shadow Of The Comet and Prisoner of Ice I never got round to playing, seemed a similar atmosphere if you're into that kind of thing.

There was a game called Dylan Dog (think there might have been more than one) based on an Italian comic book that I got off some bloke at a carboot sale when I was a kid, it was a noir detective type deal, though I got to a certain point and it asked for disk 2, there was no disk 2.. rather than being a Ron Gilbert style ending I think the carboot guy had just fucked up.

I remember quite liking the original Dune game, I played it years after it came out though, Dune 2 is another story as that pretty much started an entirely other genre of game.

There was the first adventure talkie I played on CD-Rom, Companions of Xanth, I got it on some magazine cover after I got my first CD-Rom in the mid-90s and thought it was just a demo except I kept playing longer and longer into the game until I completed it and realised it was the full thing. I think it was based on a book series, it's very much bloke gets sucked into a computer fantasy land of Dungeons & Dragons, but it's all a bit wacky but I remember the puzzles being pretty logical.

Incidentally having just got through Hollow Knight (aside from bits and pieces of the DLC stuff I'm still tidying up on) I think the world it inhabits would make a good adventure game, solving puzzles deep underground amongst a dark world of bugs and weird Lovecraftian insect Gods etc.

Anybody played Gibbous: A Cthulhu Adventure? Looks like a nice noirey art style and seems to be parodying Monkey Island a bit:



“Gibbous includes everything I love about classic point-and-click adventures.”
Kotaku

“Thanks to its witty writing and engaging puzzles, Gibbous - A Cthulhu Adventure stands out as one of the best point and click games of recent years.”
8 – Gamespew

“I haven’t shouted, cheered, or laughed this much at a point and click adventure in a very, very long time.”
9.2 – Powerup Gaming
« Last Edit: February 11, 2021, 05:10:29 PM by Hand Solo »

Thimbleweed Park is easily one of the best adventure games of the last couple of decades, so you're in for a treat.


I didn't think it was a patch on the 90s LucasArts material.

I really liked the premise of having a Twin Peasky murder mystery setting, but it spread itself too thin. The detectives immediately start saying stuff like "I need to solve this murder so I can focus on my secret agenda", which is of course deliberately nudge-nudge-wink-wink, but I found it irritating when my goal, initially, really was to solve the murder. I wanted them to play it straight for longer.

And so many characters! Why have Mulder and Scully and then give them literally identical dialogue? There's no focus.

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The ending is shite though, so be prepared for that.

I really do live in opposites world, I suppose, because that was the bit that won be back right at the end after I'd got fed up with it.

madhair60

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Laughably obvious compared to your usual style of abruptly jumping into a thread to post a terse, brusque opinion in a "fuck you, I'm right" attitude? Hard to read satirisation of your usual behaviour by just repeating your usual behaviour.

I'm really sorry and I will try to be a better poster and human being from now on.

bgmnts

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Is Book of Unwritten Tales 2 actually good? I played a fair bit of it and got to the bit where I'm a little drawn wizard bloke but it wasn't gripping me much.

Coincidentally, after bringing up Syberia in another thread, I noticed that it's free on Inidiegala at the moment. Seems to have a good rep.

St_Eddie

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All great recommendations. I would like to add Sam and Max Save The World Remastered (out on Switch now) and the Space Quest and Police Quest collections.
Loved those games when I was younger.

My list was made with one eye to recommending games to those who've yet to play them, with that in mind it's why I recommended the excellent Sam and Max Hit the Road over the rather so-so Telltale series.

It's also why I didn't recommend the Space Quest and Police Quest collections; I can easily see new players being turned off my the game design in those two series.  Particularly in the case of Police Quest, where if the player doesn't follow police procedural to the book, the game will happily screw them over.  It's perfectly possible to end up in a game ending position mid-way through simply because the player failed to do a spot check on their police car's tires at the very start of the game.  Police Quest is an adventure game for masochists and Jeremy Dewitte.

I have a theory that Grim Fandango inadvertently killed the genre.

It's more commonly presumed that Gabriel Knight 3 killed the genre, due to its notorious cat-hair mustache puzzle.  In reality, no single game "killed" the genre, it was simply a case of adventure games not really having a place within the technologically more advanced 3D gaming age which was occurring around the turn of the century.

Interestingly, Ron Gilbert has said that the audience for adventure games has never diminished; that there's still the same number of players that there ever was.  He said that the issue is that the industry expanded, with things like the Playstation introducing a whole new demographic of people into the medium, but that that the number of adventure game players never increased alongside that growth in the market.  Hence, what was once a mainstream genre is now a niche.

I've generally found stuff out of Wadjet Eye Games - the Blackwell series, Unavowed, Shardlight - is generally a lot more respectful of not fucking the player about with padding or uninteresting fiddly puzzles than stuff from previous decades.

I'll second this.

St_Eddie

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After the Monkey Island 2 ending debacle, Ron Gilbert should have learned. He then back-tracked and said he had the real Secret Of Monkey Island worked out all along, though conveniently he can't tell you that now because Disney own the rights, and since they also own the Pirates Of The Caribbean franchise, not much likely they will launch a third proper Monkey Island based on the franchise their franchise rips off based on their original theme park ride.

This is half correct.  There's a lot of revisionism going on with Ron Gilbert and the "secret" and collaborators for the first two games, such as Dave Grossman, have outright said that Gilbert never had a secret in mind beyond either the island's location and the supernatural lava pit beneath it in the first game or the carnival ending of the second.  However, it would appear that in the intervening years, Ron Gilbert has come up with a third secret and that would be the ending to his theoretical third game.

What's not true is your assertation that Ron Gilbert doesn't want to make another Monkey Island game.  By all accounts he does.  Back when Darrell Rodriguez was President of LucasArts and as a fan of the genre, he had relaunched the adventure games the company was most famous for (the two Monkey Island Special Editions), he had heavily hinted that he planned to go on to greenlight a remake of Maniac Mansion and to then have Ron Gilbert design his own third Monkey Island game.  However, then Rodriguez was booted from his position and replaced with a suit more happy to focus on Star Wars games because apparently we can't have nice things in this life.  Ron Gilbert was quoted at the time as saying [I'm paraphrasing here] "it was a real shame.  Looking back on the first two games with the special editions really made me want to jump back into that world with a third game but then the people in charge of the company were switched".

Then of course, years down the line, Disney acquired LucasArts as a part of Lucasfilm and the issue as it stands now is that Gilbert wants to make a third Monkey Island game on his terms and if he simply licenses the property from Disney, he fears that they'll impose restrictions upon his vision.  He wants to own the IP outright.


Quote from: Ron Gilbert
"It's kind of sad in a way. Yeah, I wish I owned Monkey Island and Maniac Mansion, you know? The fact that Lucasfilm owned them, I guess I was kind of OK with that, right? Because I made them there. But now that they're owned by someone else--that kind of sits weird with me. It's like, 'Well, if someone else is going to own Monkey Island, it should be me that owns Monkey Island.'"

I pointed out that certain developers have reacquired the rights to their franchises, using Kickstarter to fund sequels, but Gilbert doesn't imagine Disney would be easy to negotiate with.

"My only fear with Disney is that they don't need the money. It's not like I could ever offer them enough money to make it worth their while for them. They just seem to be a company that hoards IP, and that kind of worries me. If it had been anyone else but Disney that bought them, I would try to go put together some money and buy them back. But because it's Disney, maybe not. But we'll see, you never know."

Also, here's an interesting article by Ron on the approach he would take for a "Monkey Island 3a"
« Last Edit: February 11, 2021, 10:03:46 PM by St_Eddie »

Also, here's an interesting article by Ron on the approach he would take for a "Monkey Island 3a"

I love Curse of Monkey Island, but that game sounds pretty good too.

I'm with him when he says verbs are cruft, but in that case why did he resurrect them for Thimbleweed?

St_Eddie

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I'm with him when he says verbs are cruft, but in that case why did he resurrect them for Thimbleweed?

The entire mission brief and design philosophy behind Thimbleweed Park was "what if you opened a drawer and discovered a long lost, hitherto unknown LucasArts adventure game from the mid-90s", hence the verbs.  Thimbleweed Park was a love letter to a bygone era from two of the pioneers from said era.

The thing is, it sounds like his idea for MI3a was kind of like that too, keeping more or less the same approach (and most of the same limitations) as the old 90s MI games. Part of what I like about his pitch is that it sounds like he'd keep the classic fundamentals but update them with modern quality-of-life stuff. A lot of the really old-school stuff in Thimbleweed was a drag imo.

St_Eddie

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I backed Broken Age, but then didn't much like the art style in the updates, so I took a while to play it once it came out.. Meh it was alright, the two character in opposing worlds dynamic was sort of DOTT again but there wasn't much interaction between both characters aside from flipping between them in 'chapters' it would have been more interesting having puzzles that spanned between the two necessitating the character switch or at least clues appearing in one world helping you in the other like in DOTT.

There actually was a puzzle like this in Broken Age.  The problem is it involved solving a puzzle with Character A by using information gained though Character B, even though there was no way for Character A to have access to that information in-universe.  It also didn't help that it was the one and only time that information from one character was required to solve a puzzle involving the other character.  The game allows the player to complete one character's entire quest and only then switch over to the second character to begin their quest; aside from this one single instance, with no clue given to the player that it would ever be the case.  That's bad game design.

St_Eddie

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A few games that haven't been mentioned, Darkseed and Darkseed 2, any fans of those? I never played them beyond the demo but even though I liked Giger's art I was put off by how monochrome it was.

Don't bother.  They're terrible games.  H.R. Giger's art isn't even original art.  It's just previous works of his cut and pasted into the environment.  If you are curious in seeing what they're like as games I can recommend the hilarious playthrough commentary by retsupurae....

Darkseed

Darkseed 2

There was also a few HP Lovecraft one sThe Shadow Of The Comet and Prisoner of Ice I never got round to playing, seemed a similar atmosphere if you're into that kind of thing.

I recently purchased both titles through GOG.  I've yet to play them though.

Anybody played Gibbous: A Cthulhu Adventure? Looks like a nice noirey art style and seems to be parodying Monkey Island a bit

The art style does look lovely but I've avoided purchasing a copy because the concept of a comedic take on Lovecraft's works doesn't really do much for me.

madhair60

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Particularly in the case of Police Quest, where if the player doesn't follow police procedural to the book, the game will happily screw them over.  It's perfectly possible to end up in a game ending position mid-way through simply because the player failed to do a spot check on their police car's tires at the very start of the game.  Police Quest is an adventure game for masochists and Jeremy Dewitte.

I absolutely fucking love this - it's INCREDIBLY un-fun but it's such a unique, bizarre thing to exist that I can't help adore it. I wrote a little thing about it a while back: https://retronauts.com/article/1324/reconsidered-police-quest-in-pursuit-of-the-death-angel

Great article! And i absolutely agree.

If I remember correctly the "new"  version of Police Quest (the point and click one) removed this. The game is less fun.

Loved the genre years ago but nowadays I dont have the patience for them anymore. Tried Thimbleweed Park and it was fine but didnt enjoy it as much as the old days.

That said after Eddie mentiones Toonstruck I am definitely going to buy and play that this weekend. Loved that game.

What's not true is your assertation that Ron Gilbert doesn't want to make another Monkey Island game.  By all accounts he does.

I didn't say he didn't, I said it was convenient that he started talking about having an actual game outline/story and resolution to what the secret was for his version of Monkey Island 3 when the rights were passing to Disney so there looked like fuck all chance of him actually making it. It sounded like a load of revisionist hot air in order to get 'fans' to to pressure Disney into hiring him to produce a third game or selling him the IP rights or whatever.

There actually was a puzzle like this in Broken Age.  The problem is it involved solving a puzzle with Character A by using information gained though Character B, even though there was no way for Character A to have access to that information in-universe.  It also didn't help that it was the one and only time that information from one character was required to solve a puzzle involving the other character.  The game allows the player to complete one character's entire quest and only then switch over to the second character to begin their quest; aside from this one single instance, with no clue given to the player that it would ever be the case.  That's bad game design.

I don't remember enough about it but yeah there was barely any interaction and it would have been much more dynamic to flit between characters to solve puzzles. The fact Character A solves a puzzle with information fed to Character B happened all the time in DOTT, it works because the player is omniscient to both characters worlds and controlling the character's actions, so the other character isn't supernaturally acquiring that info, you are, and you can make use of it. Since Schaffer helped make DOTT it was rather insane he didn't make similar use of having two contemporaneous characters with puzzles spanning between worlds, whether it be through actions or information, that would necessitate switching between them often and help relieve boredom when you get stuck in one story you can respite in the other.

The art style does look lovely but I've avoided purchasing a copy because the concept of a comedic take on Lovecraft's works doesn't really do much for me.


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I didn't say he didn't, I said it was convenient that he started talking about having an actual game outline/story and resolution to what the secret was for his version of Monkey Island 3 when the rights were passing to Disney so there looked like fuck all chance of him actually making it.

Apologies for misinterpreting your words.  Still though, Ron Gilbert didn't first start talking about having ideas of what he'd like to do for a Monkey Island 3a when Disney acquired the rights to LucasArts back catalogue.  He had been talking about it on and off for ages before that.  Anytime he did an interview in fact, as you can imagine; when a journalist interviews Ron Gilbert, they inevitably ask about the possibility of him returning to make another Monkey Island game.  He's stated he'd like to, time and time again over the decades but that the issue has always been one of rights because he can't just up and decide to make a new game in the series, as he doesn't own the IP.

It sounded like a load of revisionist hot air in order to get 'fans' to to pressure Disney into hiring him to produce a third game or selling him the IP rights or whatever.

Ron Gilbert has actually said the exact opposite; he's told fans not to start online petitions and told them not to hound Disney about selling him back the IP, because "it's the absolute worst thing you can do. An online petition isn't going to encourage Disney to sell the rights back to me, but it may just let them know that the IP which they're not even aware that they own, is actually worth something and that will only cause them to further tighten their grip upon it".

I don't remember enough about it but yeah there was barely any interaction and it would have been much more dynamic to flit between characters to solve puzzles. The fact Character A solves a puzzle with information fed to Character B happened all the time in DOTT, it works because the player is omniscient to both characters worlds and controlling the character's actions, so the other character isn't supernaturally acquiring that info, you are, and you can make use of it.

There's an in-universe explanation for how the characters within different timelines are acquiring that knowledge though; items and words can travel through time via the Chron-O-Johns.  Whenever you click on item on another character's portrait, what's actually happening in-universe is that the character is flushing the item down the Chron-O-John, through time and to their pal.  That's established the first time you do so in the game.  It's also established that words can pass through time between characters, again via the Chron-O-John.  It's not a stretch to imagine that whenever one character flushed an item to another, they'd also exchange helpful words and hints with each other, based upon what they've learned within their respective timelines.



I did very much enjoy that South Park story.  However, for me there's a big difference between a show like South Park doing a one-off story involving Cartman treating Cthulhu as his own personal pet and an entire adventure game narrative built around poking fun at the entire mythos of Cthulhu.  It's fine if other people enjoy that latter, it's just not for me.  If I'm going to play an adventure game dealing with the works of H.P. Lovecraft, then I want it to be a serious adaptation of the source material, not a parody of it.

I'd feel the same way if a developer announced a new Alien game and it was a straight up parody of the entire franchise; mocking Giger's Starbeast and the entire universe and lore.  I wouldn't care to play it personally because I unironically love the darkness and history of the series and wouldn't care to see it be turned into one big joke.  Yet, I'll gladly laugh at an Alien appearing in an episode of South Park (which it has).  There's a clear distinction there, for me at least.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2021, 04:04:32 AM by St_Eddie »

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For anyone interested in playing some decent adventure games, here's a list of some of my absolute favourites...

Some great stuff in there. I'd also recommend The Last Express, a first-person rotoscoped adventure set on a train that I really should finish sometime, and Ben There, Dan That, a genuinely funny love letter to LucasArts' comedy adventure games by a couple of British amateur developers. Haven't played the sequel, Time, Gentlemen, Please! yet, though.

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Well, if this has become a general point-and-click thread, then Delphine need a look in.

Future Wars was amazing looking for the time, and was reasonably steady in terms of puzzles-taking-the-pissingness.  The plot is weak, but it's mechanically great, as the environments you find yourself in vary so wildly you always want to press on to see what they serve up next.

Aside:  For me, this was much of the appeal of seeing Point & Clicks back then.  Most games pretty much showed you what they had to offer in the early stages - a football pitch or a shooty starfield - and while that was great, PnCs had the feeling that you'd continue unpeeling them and seeing new things until you got to the end.  Value for money.

Operation StealthFantastic Bond rip-off with some amazingly stupid design decisions:  an annoying maze mini-game, and a Sierre-style purgatory arrangement that meant if you didn't pick up a rubber band stuck to a reed early in the game you couldn't complete it.  Still ace, mind.

Cruise for a CorpseBit of the Agathas on a boat, and notable for its graphical newness.  Never clicked for me as a story but it is very well done.  Absolutely murdered by technology on the Amiga, as moving from point to point is the point, but that meant that 90% of your time was spent swapping discs.

For the record, Personal Nightmare is the best ever adventure game.


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Some great stuff in there. I'd also recommend The Last Express, a first-person rotoscoped adventure set on a train that I really should finish sometime

I too must finish this game (designed by Jordan Mechner of Prince of Persia fame, incidentally) at some point.  I played it for around an hour a while back but never went back to it for reasons which escape my memory now.  The rotoscoped characters are lovely, though the lack of animation frames is a pity.  With the increased storage space of today's media and the relative ease of rotoscoping live action actors these days, the game would look absolutely stellar had it been developed more recently.

, and Ben There, Dan That, a genuinely funny love letter to LucasArts' comedy adventure games by a couple of British amateur developers. Haven't played the sequel, Time, Gentlemen, Please! yet, though.

I wasn't a fan of the constant fan wankery towards the LucasArts games in Ben There, Dan That!.  It was too on the nose, to the point where if the player had no knowledge of the LucasArts back catalogue, they'd be baffled by what's going on half the time.  It's the gaming equivalent of Family Guy; "hey, 'member this nostalgic piece of pop culture?! I don't have anything interesting to say about it, but clap and holler if you recognise the reference!".  It led to a game which often lacked its own sense of identity, or at least it did in my opinion.

, and Ben Haven't played the sequel, Time, Gentlemen, Please! yet, though.

There's actually a further two sequels beyond Time, Gentlemen, Please!; Devil's Kiss and Lair of the Clockwork God, though they're both less conventional adventure games to the ones which proceeded them (one is a Japanese style visual novel and the other is an adventure/platformer hybrid).

Operation StealthFantastic Bond rip-off with some amazingly stupid design decisions:  an annoying maze mini-game, and a Sierre-style purgatory arrangement that meant if you didn't pick up a rubber band stuck to a reed early in the game you couldn't complete it.  Still ace, mind.

FUN FACT: Operation Stealth actually got rebranded as a James Bond game by Interplay for the North American release.

For the record, Personal Nightmare is the best ever adventure game.

Admit it, you just liked looking at Elvira's pixelated cleavage during the intro.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2021, 04:17:55 AM by St_Eddie »

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Damn. The upscaled graphics matched with the same number of animation frames - along with some weirdly smoother bits of background detail - make Day of the Tentacle Remastered look downright cheap and nasty. Thankfully you can smash that F1 button to get the original graphics back.

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