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Hyper Crab Tank
Feb 10, 2014

The 16-bit retro-future of crustacean-based transportation
Malcolm in the Middle: Let's play The Legend of Kyrandia 3: Malcolm's Revenge

Remember a company called Westwood Studios? Back in the late 80s and early 90s, they were mostly known for making licensed Dungeons & Dragons games, including Dragonstrike, Warriors of the Eternal Sun, and the first two Eye of the Beholder games. They also adapted Frank Herbert's Dune books into a game often credited with defining the real-time strategy genre for years to come: Dune II. Later on they would go on to refine that formula into the extremely popular Command & Conquer series of strategy games, until they were bought out by Electronic Arts in 1998 and began the customary slow death march towards obscurity and eventual shutdown in 2003.

In the middle of all this, they made a trilogy of point-and-click adventure games, starting with Fables & Fiends: The Legend of Kyrandia in 1992. We've had a good look at the first two games in the series (Thread links: Cliches & Clowns: Let's Play The Legend of Kyrandia and Potent Potables: Let's Play The Legend of Kyrandia 2: Hand of Fate). The time has now come to play the third and final game in the series, which came out in 1994.

The first two games were pretty standard for adventure games at the time, remarkable mostly because of their simplified interface and high production values. Both games featured high-quality pixel graphics in amazing 320x200 resolution, full voice acting, and music composed by the talented Frank Klepacki (perhaps most well known for his subsequent work on Command & Conquer). In the first game, we followed the young heir to the throne, Brandon, on a quest to defeat the evil jester Malcolm, who murdered Brandon's parents eighteen years ago. In the second, we played as Zanthia, a mystic sent on a quest to save Kyrandia from disappearing into the void for reasons that don't become clear until the endgame.

The second game ended with a cutscene showing Malcolm the jester breaking free of his stony prison, thus kicking off the plot of the third game. And boy, is this game different. Emboldened by their success and high on whatever crazy was going around in the mid-nineties that convinced everyone low-resolution pre-rendered 3D graphics was the way forward, Westwood Studios took this game in a totally different direction art-wise. Gone are the lovingly pixeled backgrounds, replaced by raytraced 3D renderings. The result is... questionable. The soundtrack is brand new and more modern, both in style and technology. Personally, I kind of like the music in this game. At the same time, they somehow managed a big step backwards in terms of puzzle quality, although thankfully it's not really possible to get stuck in this game the way you could in the first. The game also has a non-linear section at the start, though the rest of the game is on rails, much like the previous two. The story is probably the weirdest part of the entire game, and commits a few... well, you'll see.

Like before, exercise good judgment when it comes to spoilers. The games are over 20 years old by now, but try not to give away where the game is going. Just like the first two LPs, this one will have a combination of screenshots, transcribed dialogue, and video clips of significant events, especially when new characters are introduced. Instead of recording the audio and putting it on Tindeck like last time (which was quite a drag), I will link to a copy of the soundtrack someone already put on Youtube. The music in this game is pretty good, so I encourage you to listen to it when possible. My commentary will be in italics, and any other text can be assumed to be straight from the game, usually in the form of dialogue.

All right, let's go meet the third game head on. Kyrandia awaits.

Table of Contents

Chapter 0: Introduction
Chapter 1: Wherein Malcolm is Set Loose Once More
Chapter 2: Wherein Local Wildlife are Exploited for Fun and Profit
Chapter 3: Wherein Malcolm Gets Hopelessly Lost
- Interlude: Portals and Potions
Chapter 4: Wherein a Revolution is Staged
- Interlude: Jailbird
Chapter 5: Wherein Malcolm Sails to Kyrandia, and Falls off the Ends of the Earth
- Interlude: No Business Like Show Business
Chapter 6: Wherein Things Go South
- Interlude: Flight of the Pegasus, and Various Loose Ends
Chapter 7: Wherein Malcolm Goes to Hell
Chapter 8: Wherein an Old Friend Returns
Chapter 9: Wherein a Slight Feeling of Déjà Vu Sets In
- Interlude: A Matter of Conscience
Chapter 10: Wherein a Ghost Testifies, and Provides a Conclusion

Hyper Crab Tank fucked around with this message at 00:11 on Jun 12, 2015


Hyper Crab Tank
Feb 10, 2014

The 16-bit retro-future of crustacean-based transportation
Chapter 0: Introduction

Before we watch the introduction cutscene, let's take a minute to appreciate the title screen.

In particular, let's appreciate the music. Straight away you can tell the tone in this game is rather different from the relatively generic high fantasy we're used to from the previous games.

Other than that, the menu is the same as every other Kyrandia game, so let's get started.

:siren: :siren:

Ah, there she is: Kyrandia. She looks a little different this time around. More... soft around the edges. More... raytraced.

Oh, hello. You look familiar, too...

Augh, why

Brandywine: Whoops! Sorry. I didn't recognize you.

Gee, thanks. That's Brandywine, Darm the wizard's assistant/pet from the first game. Other than roasting the player in the introduction cutscene, her role in this game is relatively minor.

That's the name of the game, all right! All right, let's see what kind of new problem lurks in the new Kyrandia, then, shall we.

Narrator: Malcolm was a normal baby...

... or we could have a flashback to Malcolm as a toddler!

Narrator: He faced the same temptations as every child.

Levitating buttons are a common temptation faced by your average kid today.

Narrator: ... and like any other child, his conscience served to guide his actions.

Stewart: Don't pull that kitty's tail! You'll get punished!

Gunther: Pull it! It'll be fun!

These two impish figures are Stewart and Gunther, Malcolm's good and bad conscience, respectively.

Narrator: But resisting temptation was never easy for Malcolm.

Ah, the old lure-squirrels-with-a-nut-on-a-string. Classic.

Narrator: The moral balance was tested frequently during Malcolm's youth.

Stewart: Gunther! What did that squirrel ever do to you?

Gunther: Hey! Take a hike, Stewart! We're having fun here!

Narrator: A complete deterioration was inevitable.

At some point in Malcolm's adolescence, it seems Stewart and Gunther had a fight that resulted in Stewart getting crushed under a rock. Thus, Malcolm spent a significant portion of his life with only half a moral compass, with Gunther running rampant.

Narrator: As young Malcolm grew into manhood...

Narrator: ... he became famous and successful...

Can't see anything wrong with appointing a morally stunted arsonist to a position of trust near the royal couple. Nope. Nothing at all.

Narrator: ... in his own way.

Narrator: But Malcolm's path was never easy, and many setbacks disturbed his plans.

These last few papers depict the events of the first game. Prince Brandon, having finally tracked down Malcolm, defeats him by reflecting Malcolm's own petrification spell back at him, turning Malcolm to stone.

Yeah, that looks like something Brandon would find stylish.

Narrator: Finally, in the depths of his greatest humiliation...

Narrator: ... he is imprisoned in his own, stony form.

I guess the royal trash heap is a good as place as any to store the petrified homicidal maniac that killed your parents. I mean where else are you going to put him? The magically fortified dungeon we traversed in the first game?

Narrator: As the ignorant residents of Kyrandia sleep, their worst nightmare begins...

Narrator: ... and Malcolm prepares to greet the world again! Now, with your help, we can finally hear Malcolm's side of the story!

Surprise! If you hadn't figured yet, this game has you playing as Malcolm the jester, the deposed villain from the first game. The game takes place an unspecified amount of time after the first game - presumably several years, given the general state of things, as we are soon to discover - after a freak lightning strike dispels the petrification curse, and Malcolm is free to roam Kyrandia once more.

Hyper Crab Tank fucked around with this message at 14:03 on Mar 18, 2015

Hyper Crab Tank
Feb 10, 2014

The 16-bit retro-future of crustacean-based transportation
Chapter 1: Wherein Malcolm is Set Loose Once More

Ahh... free at last...

(Music: Kyrandia)

Malcolm crawls out of the trash heap where he's spent the last few god-knows-how-long, and wastes no time planning revenge. If you watched the introduction video above, you might have noticed that Malcolm has a new voice actor this time around. In the first game, he was voiced by Gary W. Hyatt, and had a rather squeaky voice. This time, he's voiced by Eric Randall and has a much deeper and more gravelly voice than before. Presumably, someone decided that listening to the first game's version of Malcolm for an entire game would get too annoying, because Gary W. Hyatt was certainly available if they'd wanted him - he voices a different character in the third game who we'll come across sooner or later.

(laugh track)

Oh, that's another thing. This game bizarrely enough has a laugh track. Whenever Malcolm says anything that could remotely be construed as humorous (which covers most of what comes out his mouth), there is a chance that a bit of laugh track will play. You can turn it off in the options, though.

Oh god who are you where did you come from.

Remember me? I'm Gunther, your bad conscience!

So, as you'll recall from the introduction, Malcolm once had a shoulder angel and a shoulder devil representing his good and bad conscience, respectively. However, Malcolm's good conscience, Stewart, was killed sometime in Malcolm's youth, leaving him to be guided solely by... well, this guy. He's going to pop up now and then to give us advice or comment on what we're doing, and his appearance changes slightly each time.

Now that you're free, I say we go kick some butt!

Sounds like a great idea, but first, we need to have a look around. The game functions more or less like the previous two games. All the backgrounds are now pre-rendered, but characters and items are still hand-pixeled sprites. You'll also notice our inventory is gone.

Just kidding, it's right here. The inventory is now hidden by default, which also means there's more space for bigger backgrounds and bigger characters. Mousing over the bar at the bottom opens up our inventory. We've gone back to the ten slots from the first game, but we really don't need more than that. We have our Options menu on the left there, and on the right are the two new unique gimmicks for this game, replacing the amulet from the first game or the potion-making gear from the second.

If Malcolm still had his jester's staff, this is where it would be. Sadly, we lost it at some point and need to recover it. More on that once we find it. Underneath are some numbers.

Yep. This game has points, another old adventure game staple - even though the first two didn't. The points really are just a joke, though - you get points for doing all kinds of random things, and they don't affect anything. In fact, the cited 911 point maximum is a blatant lie - it's not possible to get that many points. Thus, I won't be paying much attention to points, other than point out when the game rewards for something especially silly.

The thing on the right there is Malcolm's mood gauge, and it controls how we interact with other people. Right now, it's set to Normal. If we flip it to the left...

(... I might be able to get what I want.)

I'd better not see you be a suck-up wimp too often!

Setting the mood gauge to "Nice" causes Malcolm to treat people more nicely. Some puzzles require you to be friendly towards people.

That's the way to do it... lie to these idiots!

And setting it to "Lying" causes Malcolm to become a lying bastard. Some puzzles require you to lie to people. In general, the differences between Nice, Lying and Normal are fairly minor outside of puzzle-solving, but it never hurts to try. Sometimes you just get new lines. For most of the game, we'll have it on Normal.

... sarcastic, nasty-tempered, wonderful self.

With the user interface out of the way, let's see what the trash heap has to offer us. Trash, mostly. Also a squirrel!

You know what? That sounds like a great guinea pig for trying out some of that magic of ours. We haven't used it since Brandon imprisoned us in stone.

Hey, what's this? Alright, no more fun and games!

I don't understand. What happened to my magic?

That's right, no more magic.

Whelp, our magic's gone. That's a real bummer, and is going to make revenge more difficult for us. Let's take it out on the squirrel.

Just a warning.

Why? It's a squirrel. What could possibly go wrong?

Ha. I'm not afraid of any squirrel. Boo!

I told ya so.

Our first death! And we haven't even left the first screen yet! This game has two new features to make sudden death less painful. One, Gunther will generally warn you before letting you do something that's going to get you killed. Two, the game auto-saves before you do, and lets you reload if you gently caress up anyway. In addition, like in Hand of Fate, most items will respawn if you manage to lose them, usually in this very trash heap, so you pretty much can't permanently lose progress in this game.

Speaking of the trash heap, I wonder what treasures lie hidden within?

It's a rusty nail. I know Kyrandia's economy is strange and unfathomable, but I doubt there's much of a market for those.

This item is called "Brandon's Shoe" in our inventory.

The second game taught us bottles are always good to have on hand.

Basically, rummaging around the trash heap gives you a bunch of random items, and if you ever lose an item, you can usually find it back here sooner or later. Most of the random items we can pick up here are actually useful, too. The orange peel and a broken saw I picked up offscreen are useless as far as I know, but the shoe, bottle and nails will all be of use to us. Enough trash heap; let's see what's to the west.

Ah, the old castle. Our castle. Well, I guess it's Brandon's now.

I'd better go home. Doesn't look like they've kept any of MY things in the castle.

I know, right? We had these acid-spitting gargoyles and everything. Do take note though: Malcolm has another place to crash in mind.

They look like weird ducks. When I lived here, no one made fun of my ornaments.

That boat down there looks uncannily similar to the toy boat Malcolm was playing with in the Fountain of Magic in the first game. It also showed up randomly in Zanthia's cauldron in the second game. Anyway, we can't get through the gate, and the castle looks all boring now anyway, so let's move on.

What the hell is that thing? I sure don't remember that from any of the other games. It looks like it came straight out of a Persona game.

Transporters, huh. I wonder how Malcolm even knows what they are. I don't trust them. We're walking.

Looks like we've got a competitor horning in on the clowning business. Ugh, mimes. Don't trust them either.


Your shoe is untied.



Boy, this guy is good. He's completely unfazed by everything we throw at him.

Pffft, what do you know.

These actor types can be crazy.

Oh, I see. You're going to shoot me with an arrow.

I tried to tell him. These mimes are bizarre people.

Mimes are scary. Let's not bother the weirdo any further for now. Before we move on, let's take a quick look at whatever that building is behind him.

Kyrandians do have questionable taste.

The architecture around these parts does seem to have taken a turn for the crazier ever since Brandon became king.

Thanks, King Brandon.

Let's move on. The gate to the bath is locked, and we don't have any money, so we can only go east from here.

Kyrandia in general is a lot bigger than we've seen previously. Zanthia wasn't anywhere near the castle in the first place, and Brandon never saw this part of the island.

Good to know. We'll keep that in mind for later. There's not much else of interest here, but further progress is impeded by a giant frog. How do we solve this dastardly puzzle?

Clicking the frog turns out to be enough.

That's pretty funny. We should do it to someone else.

Grumble, grumble, stupid firewood. Let's put that back where it belongs. The mushroom-shaped building behind us is strange and mysterious, but we can also go west from here (or south, back to the arena). For now, let's continue west...

... to the town square. Wow, this place is weird.

Hmm. Downtown Kyrandia looks the same as always.

I'll take your word for it, Malcolm. This location kind of highlights how much the art direction changed between games two and three; previously, Kyrandia was much more generic high fantasy. I'm not quite sure how I'd describe this, and it's only going to get weirder. The other side of the transporter we saw earlier is here, too. We can use it to teleport between downtown and the bluff overlooking the castle.

Malcolm seems to know what the buildings are. From the left, they are the Town Hall, the Magician's Lodge, the... Fish Cream Parlor, whatever that's supposed to mean, and the Toy Factory. Most of them are locked.

There might be some way of circumventing the lock, but for now let's try the one building we can enter unimpeded: the Fish Cream Parlor.

(Music: Fish Cream Parlor)

Whoa nelly. That's a lot of people. Actually, most of them are cameos from Hand of Fate; see how many you can recognize. Fortunately, they all seem to be too busy to recognize the fugitive Malcolm.

The place is packed with these idiots! There's got to be some kind of distraction I could cause that would get rid of these jerks.

We don't really have any reason to clear these people out right now, so let's go back and try the toy factory again. We need to do something about that lock, and as a matter of fact, we do have the right thing on hand already.

A handsome rogue like Malcolm will surely know how to pick a lock, right?

He sure does. Picking the lock bent the nail in the process, but that's fine. We also got a bunch of Common Thug points. It's not easy to predict what will give points, but random acts of vandalism and mayhem are a good way. We didn't actually get 16 points, by the way; it shows how many points total you have each time, and I got some other points offscreen earlier. Anyway, let's go inside.

I hope they didn't close this place just because I lived here.

We seem to have stumbled upon Malcolm's home before he moved into the castle all those years ago - remember, he spent nearly eighteen years locked up in there after the mystics sealed him inside. The giant contraption in the middle of the room is a toy machine, but we lack the means to operate it right now. There is one obvious exit at the back of the room, so let's go there.

And there it is: Malcolm's pad. It has seen better days, though I have a sneaking suspicion that it was never in particularly good shape even at the best of times.

Yeop. What's in the second drawer?

I've got my copy of "Gardening for the Criminally Negligent" in there...

Oops. I guess not any more.

So that's where the moth collection went. What about drawer number three?

My favorite childhood toy!

You'll remember this from the introduction cutscene. Malcolm used it to lure that squirrel onto a branch. There's one more item we can get in here right now, and it's under the bed.

I thought I had lost this!

We've recovered the Jester's Staff. So what does it do? Here's what the manual has to say about it:

Okay, that's about as clear as mud (although the hint as to where to find it is appreciated). You use the staff on people to amuse them. It's not exactly clear what you're actually using the staff for - some interpret it as tickling, others as some kind of jester's routine. The point is, it makes people laugh. Sometimes you need to do that to solve puzzles, sometimes you get new lines for doing it, or just random points. It's quite a step down in terms of complexity compared to the previous game.

Boy, I don't know about you, but this has been a pretty trying day. Let's have a nap and consider our options for the future.

While Malcolm naps away, we have a decision to make.

You see, this game starts out with a nonlinear section. Malcolm wants revenge on Brandon and Kallak, but he's got no magic, and it's only a matter of time before someone recognizes him. Thus, the first goal of the game is to make it out of Kyrandia to somewhere safer where we can plot our revenge. The game offer us six different ways of getting off the island, and you're going to vote on which one we'll do. If possible, I'd like to eventually show them all off in bonus updates later on, but for now let's decide which way to go first. The rest of the game is the same regardless.

Please vote on one of these six options: Juggler, Mime, Portal, Pegasus, Convict, or Reality-Warpingly Terrible Pun. They're a little vague, I know, so just choose whichever you have the best feeling about. Some of them are slightly longer than the others, but that's all right. We'll see them all sooner or later, hopefully.

Zanzibar Ham
Mar 17, 2009

You giving me the cold shoulder? How cruel.

Grimey Drawer
Goony Malcolm must pun his way to freedom.

Dec 11, 2005

Blistering idiots.
I can't say no to terrible puns.

Yapping Eevee
Nov 12, 2011


Eevees play for free.
With an option like Reality-Warpingly Terrible Pun, do you really expect people to choose anything else?

Also, I like the fact we're playing an old man villain. That's relatively novel as far as main characters go. The rest of it is a little... surreal.

George Rouncewell
Jul 20, 2007

You think that's illegal? Heh, watch this.
This game is horrible and nonsensical and i love it. I actually beat the game without any walkthroughs and some of the puzzles work on absolutely insane moon logic.

I remember all the other escape methods but Horrible pun doesn't ring a bell so i'll go with that

George Rouncewell fucked around with this message at 14:41 on Mar 18, 2015

Red Mike
Jul 11, 2011
I remember convict, pegasus and portal, but I don't remember the horrible pun so it should be good.

e: This initial section is why I enjoy this game so much more than the others. So many things you can do that would help with one escape, but are unnecessary in the rest.

Oct 29, 2012
Boy, I played the hell out of this game when I was younger. I remember most of the ways, not sure what you mean by horrible pun though, so lets go with that.
Given that they don't influence each other the best would be to show of ALL the ways (well, except the last step each I guess), if you have the time.

Feb 17, 2014

But I say fuck the rain.

Grimey Drawer

Hyper Crab Tank posted:

Please vote on one of these six options: Juggler, Mime, Portal, Pegasus, Convict, or Reality-Warpingly Terrible Pun. They're a little vague, I know, so just choose whichever you have the best feeling about. Some of them are slightly longer than the others, but that's all right. We'll see them all sooner or later, hopefully.
Why is this even a vote?

Mr. Baps
Apr 16, 2008

Yo ho?

Voting convict just to be contrary. Also, fun fact: you can finish the game without ever finding Malcolm's staff. I somehow never thought to check under his bed for goodies :saddowns:

Mr. Baps fucked around with this message at 18:18 on Mar 18, 2015

Sep 14, 2013

Dunno about the rest of you, but the mime and his reality creating powers seems like our best bet.

May 26, 2001

God drat, the pre-rendered graphics in this game are hor-rif-fic. I thought they looked kind of cool at the time but now their super-sterile look makes me kind of uncomfortable. I think this also isn't supposed as good as the second game gameplay-wise? I vote for being punny, by the way.

Dec 22, 2007

It's gotta be the pun.

This is certainly a bit... different so far. I have played the other two games, but not this one, so it should be interesting.

Aug 23, 2007

It's okay if you have any questions.

Reality-Warpingly Terrible Pun.

Oct 11, 2012

RIP Screamy You were too good for this world.
Goons sure love their puns.

Dec 29, 2008

:h: :glomp: :h:

let's get on the wrong side of the law and go full Convict :cop:

Jan 2, 2008

Why, yes, I do like Kirby games.
I can't help but wonder if the reason everything looks so different is supposed to be that Malcolm just sees things... differently.

Seyser Koze
Dec 15, 2013

Mucho Mucho
Nap Ghost

fixelbrumpf posted:

God drat, the pre-rendered graphics in this game are hor-rif-fic. I thought they looked kind of cool at the time but now their super-sterile look makes me kind of uncomfortable.

Oh yeah, this was cutting-edge back in the day. Around the same time that this came out you had PC games like Creature Shock, Dragon Lore, etc.

And we thought they looked great.

Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?

Hyper Crab Tank posted:

Thanks, King Brandon.


Hyper Crab Tank posted:

Reality-Warpingly Terrible Pun

I don't there's really any option but this one.

Darth TNT
Sep 20, 2013
I don't think pun is winning this election yet.

Things make so much sense now that Brandon is king. :allears:

Oct 30, 2010
Pun is the only correct option.

And I wanted to play the game on my own first so much, but now that I've seen the new art design I'm glad I didn't :v:

Mar 28, 2010
Reality Warpingly Terrible Pun please.

Nov 4, 2014

I won this avatar on a technicality this thick.
Just found the thread. You should probably leave a link in the previous game thread.

Hyper Crab Tank
Feb 10, 2014

The 16-bit retro-future of crustacean-based transportation

Mraagvpeine posted:

Just found the thread. You should probably leave a link in the previous game thread.

Good idea. I shall do so post haste.

Regarding the graphics in this game: Yeah, they really haven't aged well. The pixelated look of the first two games is older, and technically less sophisticated, but pixel art is a craft that had been honed for many years already by the time those games were made, whereas raytraced background graphics were only just coming into vogue. Still, they're not the absolute worst, I guess. More interesting is how drastically the design of things changed from vaguely generic fantasy to houses that look like mushrooms and pumpkins.

Hyper Crab Tank fucked around with this message at 20:43 on Mar 19, 2015

Aug 4, 2007

Cultures thrive on their myths and legends...and snuggles!
I actually kind of like the backgrounds but pixel art probably would have been nicer. This is the only game in the series I never played so I'm interested to see it.

Oct 18, 2013
It's certainly not the ugliest game in the Westwood series. That honor goes to Lands of Lore 2.

I find the plot of this game to be completely all over the shop. Malcolm just seems to do random things for poorly explained reasons. The thing that's stuck with me the most about this game is how most of dialogue begins with "I..." and after hearing Malcolm say the same things a hundred times you'll be clicking to skip through it all which makes most of dialogue in this game come across as various inflections of "I.. I.. I.. I.. I.. I.. I.."

Apr 27, 2013

Reality Warpingly Terrible Pun.

And wow, I thought we would have to fight Malcolm again after the ending of the last game, I didn't expect to play as him. The concept sounds cool.

Nov 24, 2007

What? It seemed like
a good idea at the time.

Let's punch a hole in reality!

Silver Falcon
Dec 5, 2005

Two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight and barbecue your own drumsticks!

Since I think puns are the height of humor, I must see how one can warp reality!

Pelican Dunderhead
Jun 16, 2010

Ah! Hello Ershin!
There is only pun true way off the island.

Sep 21, 2002

Are... are you quite sure you really want to say that?
Taco Defender
I don't remember the pun way at all. Let's try that.

Mar 4, 2011
How is this even a question? Reality-warping pun it must be!

Jun 27, 2004

Tell your friends we're coming for them

Ah this game, I still remember the opening song.

I remember buying the trilogy when it came out, back when computer games were bought in CompUSA in oversize boxes and you had very little idea of a game's quality before purchase because internet walkthroughs and games sites hadn't developed yet.

I spent so much time on this game! Maybe because it's longer and more frustrating than the other two... but I did genuinely enjoy the goofiness of the setting and characters, and the odd puzzles. I like puns, though. I still turned off the laugh track. Also, Malcolm;s face is kind of horrifying.

The 'attitude' meter is a great addition, it's really enjoyable to mess around with even though it has no real impact on gameplay aside from a couple of puzzles.

Colander Crotch
Nov 24, 2005

I- I don't even know what you just called me!
This was actually the first of the games that I played, and I loved it to death.

If I remember right, you can use the orange peel on Malcolm and you get some points for it, because he does something goofy with it.

Hyper Crab Tank
Feb 10, 2014

The 16-bit retro-future of crustacean-based transportation
Well, it sounds like the people have spoken. We'll be doing the pun escape first. I'm kind of glad you voted for it (and suspected you might), because it's the least obvious of them all and a lot of people probably never knew it existed in the first place. Since we'll most likely be coming back to this part of the game a few times, I'll try to skip past or avoid as many irrelevant things as possible so we can highlight them better later. This first area actually has like twice as many rooms as we're going to actually see this update.

Chapter 2: Wherein Local Wildlife are Exploited for Fun and Profit

Last time, Malcolm had just broken free of his petrification and was getting re-acquainted with the land of Kyrandia. We didn't accomplish much; we went home, found our jester's staff, and had a nap. Now, it's time to move.

Right. Before we go though, there's one last thing in here we should have a look at.

More Malcolm backstory! Let's have a look inside, shall we?

Apparently Malcolm had white hair as a child, too. Which is strange, because his hair was brown in the intro, when he was in his teens. I suppose he must've dyed it.

Okay, that's a little unexpected. Apparently, Malcolm is royalty?

There's Malcolm's mom...

... and his dad. I guess that explains why even as a child, Malcolm was wearing the motley and ended up court jester despite his spotty criminal record.

And there's Kallak, Brandon's grandpa. Malcolm doesn't trust him. For good reason, I suppose, given that he and the other mystics locked Malcolm up in that castle for almost twenty years.

Alas, the poor royal couple. You know, the ones that Malcolm murdered. Which makes him a kinslayer in addition to a regicide.

The handsome prince Brandon, protagonist of the first game. Even as a kid he looks like a dweeb.

Ha! The seeds grew so quickly, they knocked over the tub with Kallak inside!

This is actually a hint for a puzzle we will not be bothering with in this update. It's for a different path. All right, that's the end of the album. That was kind of strange. Malcolm really doesn't like Kallak's side of the family for some reason. Oh well, back to the task at hand: getting off Kyrandia.

Before we do anything else, we need a disguise. People around these parts still remember Malcolm, and his costume is not exactly subtle. There are a couple different disguises you can get in this game, but we'll get the most basic one. To do that, we need some sesame. Where are we going to find sesame?

Remember the mushroom-shaped building just outside town?

Ahh. Smell that dairy air.

That's not the pun we came here for. The dairy is conspicuously absent any cows, but there's a huge bag of seeds sitting right there.

We can get unlimited seeds from the bag. We're going to need a whole bunch of them (nine in total), but we can't carry that many plus everything else we need, so I'm just going to come back here periodically whenever we need more.

Seeds in hand, we're back at the dump. The first half of our disguise is right here. Do you see it?

We use some sesame to lure the squirrel closer to us, and get some Here Boy points as a side effect. Now that the little critter is within arm's reach, we can...

... put our nut-on-a-string to good use. How, you ask?

Hypnotize it, of course!

I can't believe that old trick still works! I love this guy!

Hypnotizing the squirrel makes it safe to pick up. If you think there's anything weird about carrying around stunned wildlife in our pockets, well, we're actually going to need to do this two more times. Yes, this escape method requires a grand total of three paralyzed squirrels to pull off. Unfortunately, the game won't let us carry around more than two at a time, so we need to use one of them up before we can move on. As luck would have it, we can do that right now.

Perfect. Rodent-based headwear is all the fashion these days in Kyrandia. The squirrel is the first part of our masterful disguise. Following this, I went back and forth and hypnotized another two squirrels and stashed them away in our pants.

We're back at the bath house to steal ourselves the second half of our disguise. The door is locked, but perhaps we can just pick the lock with a nail like we could the other ones?

Not quite. The coin mechanism is too far down to access. How can we extend the range of our bent nail?

By tying it to the other end of the nut-on-a-string, of course! This also gives us some MacGyver points. The bent nail-on-a-string easily unlocks the door to the bath house, and in we go.

(Music: Public Baths)

If we'd gone in here without wearing the squirrel on our head, the attendant would've recognized us and bad stuff would've ensued. Now, the text is kind of covering it in that picture, but there's a leather jacket hanging in the window there, just waiting to be stolen.

Leave those clothes alone!

The attendant may not recognize us, but he's not going to let us just nick people's clothes. What we need is a diversion.

For instance, tampering with the temperature controls!

You're not messing with those controls, are you?

So what if I am?

Not that simple, unfortunately.

Do you have a problem with lying?

Gunther appears to offer a useful hint. Turns out, it's almost that simple after all.

All we need to do is lie to the bath attendant when he asks whether we're messing with the controls.

You're not messing with those controls, are you?

Hey, what's the ruckus?

The attendant is momentarily distracted. While his back is turned, we swipe the leather jacket from the window and make it out of here post haste.

The squirrel hat was enough to fool the bath attendant, but it's not going to cut it with anyone else. The jerkin completes the disguise.

Perfect. Like a completely different person. Now we can go wherever we wish with no risk of being discovered. Right now, that means the Fish Cream Parlor.

(Music: Fish Cream Parlor)

It's time to clear the place out.

Hmm. Maybe this squirrel will get the attention of these weirdos.

Kyrandian squirrels are vicious killers. Releasing one in the parlor should be enough to get people's attention. Of course, it's still stunned; using the nut-on-a-string (now bent nail-on-a-string, but it works as if it was either item) will unhypnotize it.

Okay, little buddy. Do your thing!

I'm not sure if that's a Sam & Max reference. Hit The Road came out the previous year and the devs must've played it.

And where'd everybody go?

What? I didn't see anything.

If we weren't wearing this magnificient disguise, the clerk would freak out right here and throw Malcolm out. That would be bad, because we need to get this guy to make us a sandwich. A fish cream sandwich, because apparently that's a thing in Kyrandia.

He wants a sandwich.

Malcolm is still set to "Lying", so that's what we're doing.

We sent four dozen to the castle already.

Well, he wants one more. So, where's my, er, his sandwich?

Can't you get some more?

I can't leave the store. You bring me some eels, sesame, and cream, and I'll make you a sandwich.

Well, we need that sandwich (you'll see why eventually), so we need to find some ingredients. We already know where to find sesame. The dairy should be able to produce some cream for us, if we can only get the cows to come home. As for eels, we'll worry about that in a minute.

Back in the dairy. You see that mechanism on the left there?

Must be the food gauge.

We need to fill that hopper up with enough feed so that the cows will come back and start producing some cream for us. The cows won't eat plain sesame seeds - we need to get those suckers to sprout.

The frog we displaced earlier contains an endless supply of water. All we need is a bottle to keep it in.

Pouring water on the seeds creates small sesame sprouts. For some reason sesame grows unreasonably fast in Kyrandia, but hey, we're not complaining. We need five of these to fill up the hopper.

Toss them all in, and...

The cows are home, and the container on the right is filling up with cream.

Malcolm is certainly not above petty vandalism.

Delicious cream. We'll snag some more sesame from the bag before we go, and we're two for three. Next, we need some fish.

What we need is in the town hall. The door is locked, but we can lockpick it same way we did with the toy factory.

I think I remember. Wasn't this the Voice of Reason? What's it doing in here?

I have no idea what Malcolm is on about. This statue is apparently called the Voice of Reason, but that's all we really know about it. It has not appeared in any of the other games and it's not important now, so let's just ignore it. The door in the back is likewise locked, and can likewise be lockpicked.

Welcome to the town hall basement. There's a weird rug, a spare bottle, and most importantly - a tiny little brook.

Time to fish! All we need is a fishing implement, and we just happen to have one on hand.

That bent nail-on-a-string sure is doing some good work. What a versatile tool. Fish in hand, we can get that sandwich. All we have to do is dump a sesame seed, the eel, and the bottle of cream into the hopper there.

Instant fish cream sandwich! Seriously though, fish cream? I can barely imagine what that must taste like. Malcolm, care to have a bite?

Are you nuts? Not a chance.

Malcolm has approximately thirty responses if you try to use the sandwich on him, all amounting to some variation of "jesus christ get that thing away from me". I can't say I blame him.

This update is running long already, so I'm not showing them all off right now. Maybe later. Now, you might be wondering why we went through all this trouble just to get a disgusting sandwich, since nothing in the game has prompted us to procure one. We're kind of doing things out of order, but it's all about to pay off.

Back in the cellar. Let's have a closer look at that rug.

Clicking the green apple makes it light up. After that, click the red apple on the other side of the rug, and...

(Music: Darm's Hut)

Hey, it's Darm and Brandywine, our pals from the first game! Well, Brandon's pals. Probably not Malcolm's. The disguise is working out for us here, too. Darm doesn't seem to recognize us.

Hello there, sonny. Did you bring me a sandwich?

As a matter of fact, we did!

Ah, thanks! What a wonderful new tradition.

Darm has been sufficiently buttered up. If you don't give him a sandwich, he won't talk to you about anything else. He doesn't have a lot to say to us even now, though.

Darm always liked my jokes. I never forget a good audience member.

Perhaps a good old whip of the jester's staff will put him in an even better mood.

Stop it! You're killing me.

Click Darm three times with the staff, and...

Darm gets up to leave, giving us a few Mischief points and leaving us alone with Brandywine.

Oh poo poo, Brandywine sees through our meticulously tailored disguise! She doesn't really seem to care, though. Okay, so at this point, if you keep talking to her, she will give you a few clues for a different escape method, so I won't show it now. To enable us to do the pun escape, we must offer her a bribe.

A stunned squirrel, to be precise.


Hey, what do you know, it actually worked!

And so, Malcolm clicked his 'eels together, wished really hard, and was whisked back home to Kansas. I mean, to the Isle of Cats. Presumably by the sheer force of how awful that pun is. The Isle of Cats is actually where we needed to go, though in this particular path it comes kind of out of left field. Next time, we'll try to figure out what the hell we're doing next.

Hyper Crab Tank fucked around with this message at 17:55 on Mar 21, 2015

Albu-quirky Guy
Nov 8, 2005

Still stuck in the Land of Entrapment
This is Kyrandia, Warping Reality is kind of what we do here.

Edit: See? It worked! The moment after I posted this reality warped itself to place your update right before mine!

Apr 6, 2011

Tomorrow, doom!
But now, tea.
An attitude meter for conversations? Wow, that was a huge flashback moment. I remember the expressions system in Return to Zork. There were a lot of RPGs around the mid-late 90s, all of them thinking 3DSMax and Poser were the height of technology and all of them trying strange and wonderful conversation systems.

They also all used weird little vegetable-shaped houses and buildings for some reason, probably artists struggling with the new technology and cartoon stylings (except the aforementioned RTZ, which put more effort into it and produced a futuristic but believable style of architecture).

Even so, a game where you play AS the psychotic killer jester/clown figure? With hints given by the crazy voice in your head? There's a lot of potential in that, and I'm guessing by its reputation that this game won't live up to it.

Zanzibar Ham
Mar 17, 2009

You giving me the cold shoulder? How cruel.

Grimey Drawer
This seems to be an easter egg for people who already played the game once and so know about the Isle of Cats. Was it mentioned anywhere earlier?


Hyper Crab Tank
Feb 10, 2014

The 16-bit retro-future of crustacean-based transportation

Mehuyael posted:

This seems to be an easter egg for people who already played the game once and so know about the Isle of Cats. Was it mentioned anywhere earlier?

Not the way I did it, but I purposefully avoided encountering anything leading to one of the other escape paths (except talking to Brandywine, because you have to do that before you can click your eels). It should be said though that three out of the remaining five escape methods are also easily accomplishable without ever encountering any mention of the Isle of Cats. That's just kind of where you end up.

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