Sunday, 10 March 2013

Game 29: Leisure Suit Larry III - Won!

Passionate Patti Journal Entry 2: “I found Larry! It’s just as well I did too, as he’d been captured by cannibal lesbians and was about to cooked and eaten. It looked like we would both go out the same way too if I hadn’t found the magic marker in the piano bar. It turned out to be magic indeed, and I was able to literally draw a door which we bother escaped through. We then found ourselves in a studio owned by a company called Sierra and eventually came across a woman named Roberta Williams. She was making a video game called King’s Quest IV, and once she realised how exciting Larry and my adventures had been, agreed to give us our own shack in the mountains where the two of us can spend our time making love and computer games. Surely life can't get better than that!”


Onwards we shall go, despite my reservations.

Having decided to continue playing, despite the unsettling feeling that I was already dead ended, I persisted with Patti’s search for the missing Larry. I’d just managed to cross the ravine with the rope I made out of marijuana, so the first thing I tried doing was picking it back up. I wasn’t able to, so all that was left to do was take the exit to the northwest, with nothing in my possession other than my panties, my bra, my dress, two coconuts, and the key to my apartment. The next screen looked fairly innocuous at first, but as soon as I walked along the path a little way, I was confronted by a very angry feral pig! It launched into the air and landed right on top of me, killing me in the process. It had come at me so fast that I’d not had any chance to try anything at all, so I restored with a significant amount of trepidation.


Such is life!

After restoring, I approached the upper part of the screen much more slowly this time. The pig appeared again, but as long as I didn’t get too close to it, would remain at a distance. This allowed me to try things with the few items I had, and as soon as I looked at my inventory, I knew what to do. I took off my bra (5 points) and put the two coconuts into it (45 points). I then threw them at the pig, and watched with great satisfaction as he flew into the stream and away. (100 points) So far so good! Perhaps I was imagining the dead end feeling I was having?! Leaving that screen behind, I found myself standing at the edge of the stream, which was more like a roaring river at this point. The description stated that it was “too deep to wade across and too rapid to swim”, meaning I was going to have to find a clever way of negotiating it.


Surely I could just lie on my back and float to safety!

I could see a log in the river, which I waded out to and hopped on top of. Unfortunately it was firmly attached to the riverbed, meaning I just sat there on the log doing nothing. I hopped back off and typed “pull log” (10 points) to get it going, then jumped back on. (20 points) What happened next shouldn’t have surprised me, but I was a little unprepared for it nonetheless. An overhead view showed the river running around a jungle landmass, and my makeshift boat was a tiny dot at the southern end of it. More importantly, there was a small secondary window towards the centre of the screen that showed Patti on the log, and obstacles were coming at her thick and fast! As I mentioned, I wasn’t quite prepared for it, and the game speed was clearly set too high to avoid contact with the debris floating in the water. I lasted only a few seconds before my mini game was cut short, and subsequently my game.


Even Patti's worst nightmate came down that river...children!

As with the majority of Sierra arcade mini games, playing this one at Normal speed may be possible, but it’s certainly difficult, and would require stacks of saves and restores to get through. I chose to make things a bit easier, and set my game at one of the slower speeds (not the slowest though) and set out to get all the way through the river. I’m happy to admit that I had to restore about fifteen times, and saved my progress a handful of times on the way, but eventually I made it! (150 points) Just when I thought the worst was over and that I was now drifting out of harm’s way, a net came out of nowhere and entrapped me! Two women then emerged from the river and carried my ensnared body out. I was informed that these women were part of Nontoonyt’s famous tribe of Amazonian women lesbian cannibal natives (the woman that stole Larry’s wife was from the very same tribe)!


10 CAPs to the first person that names the reference here.

After a quick look at the rather primitive looking people going about their daily lives, I was shown Patti locked up in a cage. She wasn’t alone though! Larry was in there with her!!! Relieved conversation and kissing ensued, after which Larry asked Patti to explain why she mentioned the name Arnold after they’d finished making love the other night. She did so, and both of them promised to be with each other for the rest of their lives. Unfortunately, that didn’t appear to be a very long time at all, as the cage was dangling above a cauldron of boiling liquid. These cannibal lesbians intended to eat our protagonists! I still had control of Patti, and it was left to me to figure out how to escape from our predicament. The cage was made of bamboo and leather, and the only door was securely tied shut. Any thoughts of taking my time to take everything in were squashed when a witchdoctor appeared out of nowhere and the cage lowered into the boiling liquid at her gesture.


Well at least we went out together!

Before I restored, I took note of the game over screen, which said “Mark my words, Patti: sometimes you must fight magic with magic!” What did that mean? I didn’t have anything in my possession that might allow me to do anything magical. Was I supposed to assume that Patti and Larry’s love was “magical” and so the key was to somehow utilise that? I tried getting the couple to...um...do things, but soon gave up on that way of thinking. I used everything I had on everything I could think of, which wasn’t particularly easy given the limited time I had before death arrived. Eventually I was forced to accept that I was in all likelihood dead ended. It seemed very harsh that the game would let me take this path and get all the way to the final puzzle having missed something hours back, but at this stage I had to assume that whatever I needed was to be found in Chip ‘n’ Dales. I restored back to first leaving the casino as Patty, and tried to figure out how I was going to get my hands on $42.50.


Patti Potter and the Pursuit of the Pulsating Pectorals

I looked at my map, and there were really only two places that stood out as possibilities. I went for the first, which was the park with the TV in it. I couldn’t think of any way that I might be able to get some money there, but since it was the only place where nothing significant had happened in the game so far, thought it was worth a shot. It wasn’t! Not only did nothing happen there, but I wasn’t even able to read the newspaper. I therefore went for the second location, which was the bar where Larry originally picked up Patti. I figured perhaps I could get paid for my work at the piano. It seemed a long shot, but I was out of ideas. I was disappointed that the bar was empty on my arrival, but decided to hunt around anyway. I looked at the board out the front, and was surprised that there was a “marker pen lying in the tray of the announcement board”. I picked it up, but couldn’t think how that would help me down the track. That is, until I looked at it! (75 points)


Except when she's already seen what happens later in the game and then restored

This wasn’t any old marker pen. This was a “magic” marker pen! Since I needed magic to get out of the cage at the end of the game, this would have to be the solution! I could have just headed straight for the bamboo forest and forgotten all about the money and Chip ‘n’ Dales, but it was still bugging me. I walked over to the piano and looked at the cup. “Let’s see; did we have a good night tonight? Oh, well; a few bucks is better than nothing. Where you’re going you’re not going to need a lot of money anyway.” (25 points) Tips! Of course! I could have sworn that I’d looked at both the cup and the board earlier in the game when playing as Larry, but then now I was playing as Patti. I guess I learnt a valuable lesson with both of these puzzles, which is not to assume that what occurs for one character will always be the same for another. Not that many games have multiple characters to play.


Finally I can get into this strip joint!!

I still didn’t know how much money I’d actually collected, but assumed it would cover the entrance fee at Chip ‘n’ Dales. Once I handed it to the maitre‘d, I found out that It added up to $43.00, which was just 50 cents more than was required. (43 points) I sat down at a table inside and watched the club’s owner, Dale, strut his stuff on stage. It seemed Al Lowe found yet another way to present what could have been an excessively smutty scene (Dale strips down to a G string and thrusts about) in a humorous and inoffensive way. Watching from above, the player can’t see all that much, but the shadow behind Dale is suggestive enough. When Dale took off his clothes, he threw them onto the table in front of Patti, so I looked at them. “Perhaps Dale finds you interesting. Maybe his clothes are a clue...” I tried picking them up, but couldn’t. I tried searching through them, but couldn’t do that either. The only other thing I could think to do was return the favour, so I removed my panties and threw them at him. Success! (100 points)


This guy must be seriously hot to get Patti's panties in her current state!

Once the show was over, Dale approached me and asked if it was I “that threw that lovely little pair of panties at me”. He then told me I looked lonely and asked if I would like a little company. How could I refuse a man that looked like a young Tom Jones?! (1 point) Since the game was giving me hints that Dale might be able to help me find Larry, I asked him about the forest. “Patti, all I can say is: when all else fails, read your manual!” A couple of readers had already suggested to me that the manual hinted as to how to navigate the forest, but since I’d already mapped it out, didn’t really require the assistance. I tried asking him various other things, but the only success I had was when I typed “help”, to which he responded “Patti, I’m no pathfinder, but I know this: the answer doesn’t lie with anyone here in this village!” So it seemed to me that the only purpose of Dale, and therefore Chip ‘n’ Dales, was to tell the player to look through the manual to figure out how to navigate the maze.


Oh...perhaps the game designers wanted to believe this guy would pull the chicks!

OK, so I had what I needed to finish the game (at least I hoped I did). I then spent the next twelve minutes getting back to the cage in the cannibal village, which included using my map to get through the maze, climbing over the ravine, getting past the angry pig and negotiating the river arcade mini-game. The only thing I did differently this time was to follow Ilmari’s suggestion and smoke the marijuana I collected on the cliff ledge. This led to a very funny scene where Patti prepares the pot, uses some rocks to light it up and then smoked it. This causes her to literally float in the air and to “see visions of Daventry!” Thankfully I saved my game just prior to smoking the joint as the effect ran out just as I was floating above the ravine itself, causing me to fall to my death. If this was Al’s way of saying “drugs are bad for you kids”, I’m not sure it got the message across, but it sure was funny!


Thanks for the tip Ilmari.

As soon as Patti and Larry were reunited in the cage, I typed in “use marker”. “Larry, I don’t know if this will work or not, but the only thing I can think of is this Magic marking pen I picked up back at the lounge. Let me see if I can draw us a way out of this mess!” Patti then drew a door, opened it and crawled through it! (500 points) Larry then followed, and I watched as they both fell through the darkness reminiscent of Alice going through the rabbit hole to Wonderland. This all seemed very silly to me of course and I had to wonder whether Al Lowe had perhaps smoked a bit too much pot himself during the making of this game. I should have trusted him more though, as the proceeding scenes are right up there with the highlights of my blogging experience so far. Patti and Larry didn’t just appear back in the piano bar or in Patti’s penthouse suite. No...they reappeared on the set of the Police Quest movie!


Well really? Were they on drugs?

It’s going to be difficult for me to explain just how cool this ending is. There are simply too many fantastic Sierra game references to mention, and it shows that Al and his helpers knew exactly how their audience thinks and what they would find amusing. After the movie director calls in the music (the exact music that was playing in the car sequences in Police Quest), lights and camera, two men walk beneath a large table with a model of Lytton. They both have sticks in their hands with police cars on the end, which they move around the streets while the camera above pans across to capture the action. I seriously laughed out loud while this was going on, despite my wife and daughter being asleep close by. While everything appeared to be going well with the filming, suddenly Patti came falling from out of nowhere and crashed through the table onto the floor beneath.


This was adventure game gold!

Larry then fell onto the table, where he lurched about Godzilla style, crashing through buildings and into the electricity wires, before finally falling on top of Patti. Larry was obviously concerned for Patti’s well-being, but she eventually got up, complaining that she was going to end up flat-chested if she continued to do her own stunts. They both walked out from beneath the table, and I was given back control of Patti. I took the only path available to us and reappeared in a storage area containing numerous Sierra adventure game memorabilia. There were targets from Police Quest, the title screen from King’s Quest, the monk’s outfit worn by the Murry brothers in Manhunter, the car that was used to “film” the Leisure Suit Larry 1 driving scenes, among other treasures. There didn’t appear to be any purpose to any of it other than enjoyment, so we walked through to the next screen.


Larry II attempted this when Larry died, but this takes it to a whole new level.

The next screen was also extremely familiar, being the set used for the opening of Space Quest II. There was some sort of anti-gravity machine built around a large magnet that caused both Patti and Larry to float around the screen. There was a large plug in the floor next to it, and as soon as Patti started floating towards it, the solution became obvious. Once she was upside down just above it, I typed “take out plug”, which of course resulted in both of us crashing to the floor with our asses literally in the air. Just when I thought things couldn’t get any better / funnier, the next scene had me in stitches! Patti and Larry walked in on Roberta Williams filming the whale scene from King’s Quest IV! Long time readers will know that I despised everything to do with this puzzle (I rated it most unsolvable of 1988), so watching Al take to the piss out of it gave me great delight!


By this stage I'd fully forgiven Al for such a bizarre puzzle solution

After directing her crew around, Roberta calls action and Rosella begins the torturous task of climbing the whale’s tongue. “Now, Rosella, what do you say we take it again from the top, and this time really show me some emotion!” Just as when I played the game, as much as she tried, Rosella continuously failed to reach the top and fell down. An increasingly frustrated Roberta demanded she try harder until the pig tailed blonde blew up. “This just isn’t right! It’s too humid in here. This wool skirt keeps soaking up water. That goo you spread on the tongue is too slippery. You haven’t given me my motivation for this scene yet...” Roberta’s cranky response was interrupted when both women noticed Larry and Patti on the set, with the director demanded to know who the intruders were.


It's great to know that others realised how irritating this whole section of King's Quest IV really was.

Patti introduced herself and Larry to Roberta and proclaimed how much of an honor it was to finally meet her “software hero”. Patti then described everything that had occurred, which didn’t impress Roberta all that much. Larry’s story did however and she asked him whether he felt his experiences could form the basis of an adventure game. “Of course, it would, Bert! If you could just set us up with a little place to work (up to my reasonable standards, of course) we would write a whole series of adventure games for you!” This of course is exactly what Roberta did, and the Leisure Suit Larry adventure game series was born! Larry III ends with our happy couple lounging around in a “simple programmer’s shack in the mountains”, with Larry spending his time telling the world his life story through adventure games. I imagine all of this would have be extremely confusing for players that have litte to no history with previous Sierra games, but surely the inexperienced would have been a minority. As for me, I loved it, and have an even greater respect for Mr Lowe because of it! I’ll leave the rest of my ramblings for the Final Rating post.


What? I could explore the island in the showgirl costume? Why would I do that?

Session Time: 2 hours 00 minutes
Total Time: 8 hours 30 minutes

24 comments:

  1. Mage's Initiation has been funded. It really does seem that pretty much all adventure games with a reasonable budget will get funding on Kickstarter, which is fine by me.

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  2. Why, Galaxy Quest of course!

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  3. What a delightful ending! The idea of the movie sets is genius. That Lytton map!! I never finished this game, but I wonder how many of the references I would have got at the time.

    I spy a couple of Vohaul's salesmen from SQ2, and I also got a chuckle at the "Acme Roman Numerals" stand; a necessity for the production of all those sequels!

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    1. There's also the big "M" sign from Space Quest 3's Monolith Burger!

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  4. The section with Patti was extremely frustrating to me. I ended up resorting to a walkthrough. Missing just one piece of her clothing meant a dead end. And fuck you, magic marker. Freaking impossible to find and used for a completely illogical puzzle.

    At least the ending was funny. :-) Never played KQ4 (planning to), but I had heard of the infamous whale puzzle so I still understood the joke.

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    1. I've gotta admit that I remembered it from my first playthrough as a young'un. Every single time it came down to walking in that room (as Larry, unfortunately, as I just remembered 'use it at the end') I repeatedly looked for and attempted to grab it. Not out of some in-game reasoning, just because I remembered it, haha.

      Also, on my replay, I realised much to my chagrin that Patti actually wore a bra. (It was somewhat difficult to realise, given it was rather pixellated, and.. well, if anyone would go without a bra, it'd probably be Patti. Given she didn't even wear the panties you gave her.)

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    2. She does wear the panties. She took them off to throw them at Dale. At least that's how I understood what happened.

      Yeah, the magic marker thing is pretty unfair. I feel genuinely lucky to have looked at the board again when I went back to the bar, and can't really explain why I did.

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    3. Magic pen impossible to find? When you enter the piano room as Patti something starts glittering below the board. How could you missed it? It is not a game fault that you are not good observant. What's more you can notice different text on the board. I thought it is obvious for adventure Player to re-examine the object then.
      If you ask me why should I enter this room I have another obvious answer for you :) At some point playing as Larry (certainly when Patti appears in the room) you can find green object. If you examine it you can find that it is a snifter filled with tips. However, you are unable to take it because as the game states they are Patti's. Well, the first thing I did after leaving her appartment was grabbing my hard-earned money.

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  5. What a fantastic ending. This whole game was great to read through!

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  6. Yes, you have ascertained my secret identity. I am really Grapthar. an omnipowerful, highly intelligent and drop dead gorgeous pan-galactic being who is quite handy at inserting nails.

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  7. Man, I am so behind: Anyway, There is an Ask Me Anything ongoing with the creator of Dreamfall: http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/1a0klp/i_am_ragnar_t%C3%B8rnquist_creator_of_dreamfall/

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  8. Just thought I'd finally find a place to chime in. I found this blog maybe a month ago and just spent all this time catching up with a whole slew of childhood/teenage memories playing pretty much every one of these Sierra games.

    Like everyone here, I thought I was their biggest fan. I look forward to more of your journeys back through the adventure age.

    Can safely say I learned to type by playing all these games. Thanks for the memories, I hope to contribute here on your next playthrough.

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    1. I kind of agree with your type comment, except I just learnt to type really quickly with 2 fingers

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    2. I too learned to type quickly from Sierra games (and using DOS). Took me a long time to properly touch-type though.

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    3. Welcome Josh! Always stoked to see new readers on the blog. :)

      I look forward to reading about your experiences for future games.

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  9. Yay! I finally caught up! Some good postings! I'm really looking forward to the next few games. Science Fiction AHOYYYYYYYYYYYyyy!

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  10. My understanding is that Leisure Suit Larry II's ending had to be cut short by time constraints, so I think Al wanted to make sure that this time the game finished with a bang. I missed a few of the references because I hadn't played Space Quest yet, but I had finished Police Quest and was playing King's Quest IV at the time, so I laughed like crazy when I got to the ending.

    I was thinking of saying something when you were playing through the Cherri part of the game that you'd missed a good bit, but seeing as the game has already mentioned it.... ;o)

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    1. Question: "What? I could explore the island in the showgirl costume? Why would I do that?"

      Because you can, isn't that usually enough reason to do something in an adventure games. :) Well, I also missed this when I was playing for the first time as I thought the costume had already served it's purpose. See also my comment in the introduction post..

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  11. I too had the exact same message at the end of my playthrough of LSL3. I never did go back and see what people would say while Larry was wearing the showgirl outfit. I can only think of one other Sierra game that gave hints about what you missed (Colonel's Bequest)

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    1. LSL 5 did it also (although not as explicitly).

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  12. That ending sounded so interesting I had to see if for myself even though I'm not a big Sierra fan.

    If anyone else wants to see it, skip to the 3 minute mark here...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0AMgpNx8DMU

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  13. I found this blog through The CRPG Addict. I was researching RPGs to make a list to play through for a historical perspective on the genre. I discovered that I would have to divide my list into two — one for Western RPGs and one for Japanese RPGs — but I digress...

    I already did a list for a historical play through of Adventure Games, but I limited mine to only games still accessable through digital distribution services like Steam or GOG. I wish you good luck with your work, keep it up.

    I can't wait to see when you start games in the era of The Adventure Company. I consider them to be the big name in modern Adventure Games, picking up from where Sierra On-Line left off. And then there is Phoenix Online Studios, pretty much what I consider to be the spiritual successor to Sierra. When you get into contemporary games you should definitely check them out.

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    1. ... this was supposed to go on the comments for the most recent blog post. How it ended up here, I have no idea.

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