Thursday 28 February 2013

Game 29: Leisure Suit Larry III - Reality Bites

Larry Laffer Journal Entry 5: “I should have known better! Am I really that stupid that I thought the gorgeous Patti would really be in love with me?! She showed so much interest, especially after I spent so long working on my new body, and we spent such an amazing time together in her penthouse suite. As usual though, it all turned out to be a lie, and she was thinking of another man the whole time. I don’t know who this Arnold is, but I hope he realises how lucky he is. Oh well...I’ve had it with women! It always ends in pain and embarrassment! I’m going to spend some time away from the world. I don’t even care where I end up. As long as it’s far from women...particularly Patti!!!”

Ditto Bambi...ditto!

One of the biggest risks I face while writing this blog is making a fool of myself in front of hundreds of readers. Thankfully, this doesn’t bother me too much. In fact, I think all adventure gamers have moments where they miss something right in front of their face or make a really bad decision, so if anything I’d like to think these instances are bonding experiences rather than distancing ones. I actually had the choice of whether or not to tell you all about my locker 69 troubles, since I’d already figured out where I’d gone wrong before I wrote the post, but not to do so would have felt very disingenuous. The fact is that I was completely on track while trying to find the combination to the locker. I just screwed up! The business names on the back of Suzi Cheatem’s Fat City membership card did indeed represent page numbers in the tourist manual. I was correct that Bippi’s Island Liquors was 10 and Dewey, Cheatem & Howe was 16, but I’d failed to see that there was an ad for Nontoonyt Community Centre on page 9. This was a big facepalm moment for me, as I’d wasted quite a bit of time wandering around and trying random combinations based on ridiculous theories.

About bloody time too!

So the code to the locker ended up being 10-9-16, and inside was a “photo of a scantily-clad Tom Selleck, some spray deodorant, and a set of woman’s sweats.” (100 points) I put on the sweats in preparation to enter the gym (2 points) and made my way over to the second exit from the locker room. I’d inadvertently found out while researching Larry III that there was a pretty significant technical issue that arises when trying to get through the gym scene on modern computers. The problem occurs because Al Lowe wrote what he thought was a pretty clever piece of code that makes the number of repetitions Larry needs to do on each exercise directly proportional to the clock frequency of the computer’s processor. On a 16 MHz 386, this resulted in 21 repetitions on each of the four exercises. On a Pentium 233, each exercise had to be repeated 510 times! On my Alienware laptop…well, someone else would have to do the math. I really hoped that playing the game in SCUMMVM was going to avoid the problem.

A few months in the gym and these women won't be able to refuse me

It did! I hopped onto the pull up equipment and used the arrow keys to lift and lower myself. Interestingly I was able to view myself doing this on the equipment at normal size, as well as a close up version of the action in the upper screen.  I repeated the movement until I received a message saying “Congratulations! You’ve done 12 pull ups.” I then completed 12 bench presses, 12 bar pulls and 12 leg raises, after which I was told “Boy, oh boy! This exercise stuff really works! Why, you look and feel like a new man!” Before my very eyes my body began to bulge all over the place, at first making me appear like some mutant hunchback, before eventually covering my frame with huge muscles. Just a few of these exercises and I could now compete with Mr Universe! Of course this new physique was too good to be true and I soon sprang a leak and shrank back to a more normal, albeit toned, size. (100 points)

Or maybe just a few minutes!!!

“Oh, well. Who would want to be that pumped up anyway? At least you’re no longer overweight; why, just take a look at yourself. That gut of yours is gone and just look at those muscles! What a hunk!!” I stood Larry sideways and admired his new fitter physique. Surely Bambi and Patti wouldn’t be able to resist me now! I walked back to the locker, took off the sweats, covered myself with a towel, and then made my way to the showers. I’d expected a similar scene to the Police Quest showers, where any sign of nudity was hidden by walls. I should have known better! The shower screen was viewed from below the tiles, meaning I was forced to look up at Larry’s butt crack and...other bits...while moving him into the necessary parts of the room. I turned on the water and then used the soap on a rope that I’d been carrying around for a while. I’d noticed earlier that the soap had a circular hole in the centre, so it wasn’t surprising when Larry washed himself very well indeed. “Some parts longer than others!” (60 points)

Aaaaggghhhh my eyes!!!!!!

All cleaned up, I made my way back to the locker and used the deodorant (49 points), and then put my leisure suit back on. Since Bambi was just next door, I decided she would be my next conquest. This time when I offered to help her make her video, Larry said: “Bambi! I’ve got it! I know just the angle that will sell that video of yours! Sex!” (99 points) Bambi thought this was a brilliant idea, realising that nothing would sell aerobics like sex. I asked her whether she could make sex positions interesting enough for the video, after which she showed me numerous raunchy moves onstage. By this stage Bambi was getting really horny and demanded we stop rehearsing and get down to “show time”! She led me out of the studio and into the tanning room. (3 points) Apparently the tanning bed had been broken since the late eighties (wasn’t this game made in the late eighties?), so no-one would disturb us there.

You really don't need to convince me Bambi. Can we go now!

I moved over to the tanning bed to “audition” for a role in Bambi’s video. We got straight to it, with Larry once again keeping his suit on for all the action. A few thrusts in and something rather dramatic occurred. The lid of the tanning machine came crashing down on us and began heating up! After a few humorous innuendos from both Bambi and Larry, such as “I can’t get it up!” and “that’s your problem Larry, I’d just like to raise the lid of this tanning booth!”, Bambi slipped out of the machine and left me to ponder why it’s so difficult to get an even tan! So once again Larry’s seemingly successful attempts at getting laid had been thwarted by unfortunate and unforeseen circumstances. The quest for satisfaction would have to continue, and I had a pretty good feeling that my quest would be fulfilled just around the corner. It was time to go see Patti again!

Final Destination 3: The Adventure Game

With my new physique, I gave Patti a freshly made lei once again. This time she responded with “Oh Larry, thank you! You’re such a charmer! I’m ready. What do you want to do?” (100 points) All I could think to say was “ask about room”, to which she said “Yes, Larry, I do live in the penthouse here.” (100 points) After further questioning she said “It’s getting late, I’m ready to quit for the night, and you’re looking better all the time. Here, Larry, take the key to my suite. I’ll slip out the back way and use the service elevator. Just wait a few minutes before you come upstairs, as I’d like to slip into something more comfortable…” (25 points)  Patti then made a real point of reminding me that she refuses “to make love to a man without something to drink first!” I didn’t have any form of alcohol in my inventory, and couldn’t think of anywhere specific that I might be able to get some. Time to put the thinking cap on!

Quite possibly the most romantic thing anyone has ever said to me!

The first thing I tried to do, simply because it was on the way out of the casino, was to ask the obnoxious man at the desk in the hotel about wine. I thought maybe I could order some from the hotel. He wasn’t able to assist, so I looked at my map to see if any locations popped out as potentials. I’d not yet been able to enter Chip ‘n’ Dales. Perhaps it would now be open and I could find some wine in there? Well the answer was no, as it was still locked with a “CLOSED” sign on the door. My next thought was that there might have been a bottle on one of the tables in The Comedy Hut, and since it was very close to Chip ‘n’ Dales, I wandered over to have a look. Yes, there was a bottle right in the middle of the table I sat at originally! I walked over to it and picked it up! Excellent! (15 points)

Well it was a lot easier to get than in Indiana Jones

Before I took the wine back to Patti, I wondered what else I might have missed in The Comedy Hut. I really hadn’t given it much attention during my mapping period of the game, but I’d not had any need to come back until now. Ever since my first visit, I’d wondered what would happen if I managed to let Paul Paul go through his entire comedy routine. I decided to find out, but after a few minutes of jokes, I started to wonder whether it would ever end. For the first time in Larry III, I turned to game speed up to max and watched as he flew through joke after joke after joke at high speed. Finally, he stopped, and said “and now, because you’ve been so patient, I’d like to do my famous impersonation of a duck!” He then did the best impersonation of a duck imaginable (i.e. he changed into a duck) for a short amount of time and then disappeared off stage. (100 points)

Now that's what I call talent!

I then turned my attention to the rest of the room, looking at each of the tables and people in turn. When I came to the lower left table, I received the following description. “Sitting at this table are Bill Skirvin and Al Lowe, deep in an esoteric discussion about 3-D animated graphic adventure game design.” I was then given an opportunity to say something, so I simply typed “Hi Al”. Al then remarked: “Hey! I’ve got an idea. How about if you and I sit in a comedy club and we make Larry walk up to us and say something like, “Hi Al”” Bill responded with ““Hi Al”, eh? Are you crazy? No way. That’s so lame! Larry would never say that!” Al seemed to agree: “Yeah, I suppose you’re right. This is not a good idea. Let’s get out of here. “Hi Al” Really!!” The two game designers then disappeared! (5 points) I’m fairly used to Sierra games referencing each other and even the designers behind them, but this…this was awesome! Very funny indeed!

These guys really had fun making these games, which I can't imagine happens all that often these days.

Right, it was time to go to Patti’s penthouse! I hopped into the hotel lift that had appeared unusable to me previously. I’d been dreading this part due to my failed attempts at choosing a floor, but typing “go to penthouse” was all I needed to do now that I had the key that Patti gave me. (4 points) When the lift finally reached the top floor, I stepped out into Patti’s amazing pad, taking in her reclining form on the circular bed. I typed “pour wine” and Larry placed the bottle on the silver tray alongside two empty glasses. (500 points!) I then witnessed a very long sequence that held much banter between the two characters, with Larry seductively sliding onto the bed and pouring the wine. The animation is rather smooth and impressive during this scene, suggesting great effort was made to give this climactic scene extra resonance. We drank…and then…


…we made love! Unlike the other humorous sex scenes in the game, this one wasn’t actually shown on screen. After moving in for some kissing action, the screen went black, and the only sign that anything was going on at all was numerous “ooohhhsss” and “aaaahhhhs” and lines such as “Oh yes, THAT! Yes, THAT! Please, more of that!!” Eventually I was shown a screen of Patti in apparent ecstasy, with two temperature gauges representing the lovers peaking climaxes. With a final united “YES!”, Larry and Patti collapsed to the bed and panted, both of them pondering how the other was the lover they’d always wanted. While all this romantic stuff was going on, Al still managed to get a few cracking lines in. Larry thinking: “The woman of my dreams…” Patti thinking: “The man of my dreams…” Both thinking: “I’m in love!” “Larry thinking: There’ll never be another woman for me!” Patti thinking: “How I wish I still smoked!” That one had me laughing out loud!

Or hot for that matter! Do you have air con?!

However, as is usually the case, not everything goes Larry’s way! As Patti is drifting off to sleep, she thinks about her life, promising herself that “Tomorrow I must call my boy friend and tell him I’m breaking off our relationship for good. Sorry, Arnold.” She then murmured Arnolds name as she lost consciousness, just loud enough for Larry to hear. This causes Larry to doubt everything that has just happened, believing that Patti has been thinking of another man all along. He gets up, gets dressed, and departs the room, “going where no woman will ever frustrate me again!” When Patti wakes up, she realises Larry has gone, and after finding him entering the bamboo forest through her telescope, decides to set off in pursuit. This means that I now take control of Patti and go in Pursuit of the Pulsating Pectorals! I look forward to seeing how this plays out.

I knew it! That bamboo section wasn't for nothing!

Session Time: 1 hours 00 minutes
Total Time: 4 hours 30 minutes

Note Regarding Spoilers and Companion Assist Points: I've written a set of rules regarding spoilers and companion assist points. Please read it here before making any comments that could be considered a spoiler in any way. The short of it is that no points will be given for hints or spoilers given in advance of me requiring one. Please...try not to spoil any part of the game for me...unless I really obviously need the help...or I specifically request assistance. In this instance, I've not made any requests for assistance. Thanks!

Sunday 24 February 2013

Game 29: Leisure Suit Larry III - Pandering to Passionate Patti

Larry Laffer Journal Entry 4: “I’ve met the woman of my dreams! Her name is Passionate Patti, she’s a keyboard player at the casino bar, and I simply must have her! Unfortunately, she’s playing a bit harder to get than some of the other women around here, including Cherri Tart, who didn’t hang around after I managed to have sex with her. That little episode ended more than a little embarrassingly, with me dressed in feathers and dancing in front of hundreds of spectators, but I managed to make the most of the situation. In fact, the $500 I made was very useful; being just the amount I needed to get the divorce papers Patti demanded to see. Sadly, now it appears she’s not entirely impressed by my relaxed physique. Nor is Bambi, a chick I met at the gym. I’ll show soon as I can figure out the combination to this damn locker!”

It took me ages to find this place! It better be worth it!

So I’d finally found Dewey, Cheatem & Howe! It was time to go in and see if I could get this land deed. Inside there was a male receptionist who I asked if there was a lawyer available to see me. He asked me what in particular I needed a lawyer for, to which I answered “land deed”. (20 points) Two of the three lawyers were currently preoccupied, but the third one, Ms. Cheatem, was readily available. I entered her office, and took a seat on the couch at her instruction. I “looked” at Suzi Cheatem, who of course turned out to be a stunner! While I hadn’t entered the room expecting to do anything other than get the papers I needed, I was now thinking that there might be another opportunity to get some action here. Before I could make any moves, Suzi informed me that the first consultation would be free, but that any further work would come at a price.

Suzi Cheatem: Very worth it!

I spent quite a few minutes trying to figure out what it was that might impress Suzi enough to get her naked, but she just wouldn’t give me anything. I noticed there were TV guides on the shelf alongside the text books, so I thought perhaps she would like an invitation to the park with the TV (hey, it was worth a try), but that didn’t get anywhere. In the end I simply asked her about the deed, and Suzi explained the ancient island custom. “Any land owned by either or both spouses upon dissolution of the marriage becomes the exclusive property of the male member of the household.” This meant I was now the owner of “a considerable chunk of Nonoonyt real estate”, and she asked her secretary (Roger) to get the papers organised for me. (30 points) I had one last unsuccessful attempt at seducing Suzi, and then left her office to go see Roger. He told me to come back in a few minutes, which typically for a Sierra adventure game, meant stepping outside and coming back in.

Why don't you tell me what you really think!

I collected the deed, but not before Roger told me how worthless the land was, being so isolated from the main tourist areas. (20 points) I rushed back to the casino showroom and knocked on the door. Cherri was there as promised, and she asked if I had the deed. “I’ve got it right here, sweetheart, and I think you know just how much I’d like to give it to you! Now you can give up show business and move to your own little place out in the country.” (25 points) Her response proved that not everything was as it seemed: “640 acres of virgin Nontoonyt rain forest, perfectly suited for slash burning and typical agricultural pillage”, but she did invite me backstage to allow her to express her appreciation. Score! Cherri and I walked behind some sort of half transparent prop, causing our bodies to be nothing more than silhouettes. We then took off our clothes and got down to business! Just as things were really heating up, the lights went out!

Somehow I don't think Larry could...

It soon became apparent that the second show was about to begin, so both Larry and Cherri rushed to get their clothes back on in the darkness. Of course, when the lights came on, I found myself in Cherri’s show costume, standing in front of a packed audience! Larry decided to do his best Cherri impersonation, and went through all the shimmies, shakes and spins. Funny stuff to be sure, although the quality of the graphics don’t really allow for much discernible difference between Cherri or Larry onstage at such a distance. “The audience must also appreciate your talents as they begin the throw dollar bills - - at you!” After the show was over, Larry collected no less than five hundred dollar bills! (43 points) I went backstage again to change back into my suit (25 points) and then made my way down the corridor to the bar. This time Patti was there, seated at the keyboard!

Well, it seemed funny when I came up with it.

I walked over, sat myself on a stool, and introduced myself. (5 points) Her response came as a bit of a surprise, given how unused I am to women trying to pick up Larry in return. “And hello to you, Larry. I’m the girl of your dreams, Passionate Patti!” I got a close up look of Patti, and immediately turned to the art of seduction. Unfortunately, Patti wouldn’t give me much in the way of interests, only telling me that “you won’t get much out of life if you don’t go for it.” I didn’t have much in my inventory, but I thought I would try giving the lei I’d made out of flowers. “Patti, here. Take these wilted, old flowers.” Well that wasn’t quite how I would have sold it, and not surprisingly, she responded with “No way Larry. Although I have a soft spot in my heart for orchids, I could never accept these tired old things. Is that all you think of me? Dead flowers, indeed!”

Where have you been all my life?

Well that might not have gone too well, but it told me the flowers were the key. There must be some sort of timer that takes the orchids from nice and fresh to old and wilted. I made my way back to the cave and collected a new bunch of flowers, then made a fresh lei for Patti. I took them straight to Patti, confident that we’d be horizontal in no time. “No, Larry, not now. Although I have a soft spot in my heart for orchids and I am growing more fond of you every moment we’re together, I could never date a married man!” Married? I’m divorced! I guessed that I was going to have to prove that Kalalau and I were no longer married, which would probably mean paying another visit to Suzi Cheatem. Oh well, at least that would give me another opportunity to bed her too! Not that I’ve used a bed at any stage in the game so far.

Yes, I tried everything! Needless to say, it didn't impress her.

Arriving back at DCH, I walked up to Roger and typed “ask about divorce”. He informed me that Suzi would be happy to meet with me again, but that this time it would cost me $500. Well, it’s hardly a coincidence that $500 is exactly the amount I picked up while on-stage in the casino showroom, so I handed it over. (10 points) I spent another ten minutes or so trying to seduce Suzi, but I just couldn’t find the trick to it. Perhaps there isn’t one?! Or perhaps there’ll be another opportunity down the track. Forgetting that for now, I asked her about the divorce, and she told me she would “get started on it right away. It’s a fairly straightforward agreement; it shouldn’t take long to prepare.” (40 points) As usual, all I had to do to get the papers was walk out of DCH and then back in, collecting them from Roger at the front desk. (20 points)

Come on Suzi. Just tell me what you want so we can get it on on the couch!

I rushed back to Patti, collecting fresh flowers for a new lei on the way. Surely she’d be mine now! “Patti, look! I did it! My divorce is finalized. Here, take it. Frame this thing and mount it here on your piano!” As I handed the papers to Patti, Suzi’s membership to Fat City fell out. Excellent! That means I can get into the gym, and it also might just give me a way to get Suzi to be very “grateful”. That would all have to wait though, or so I thought! (100 points) “Congratulations, Larry. Did I mention how much I love single men? Suddenly you’ve become a lot more interesting to me. We should get together some time.” What do you mean by “some time”? I’m ready to go now Patti! Confused, I tried talking to Patti again and all she would say is “Larry, I believe in the old saying: a good man is hard to find... but a hard man is good to find!” The gym membership! I was going to have to tone up for Patti to be truly interested. Man, she really is playing hard to get!

Well then I'm the catch of the century!

Taking Suzi’s membership card to Fat City, I realised I had three doors to choose from once there. I chose the one on the left, which led to the most daunting locker room I’ve ever come across! (3 points) I have to admit that just seeing this screen suggested whatever was about to happen was likely to be challenging, but I had little idea as to how. I could see what appeared to be naked women in the distance, but there didn’t seem to be any way of getting to them. What initially looked like a bitch of a maze turned out to be a very limited pathway through about 50 lockers! There were two doors at the back of the room, the first one leading to the showers and the second to the gym itself. I wasn’t able to enter either of them, as I was still in my suit. Clearly I was going to have to get changed, but which was Suzi’s locker??!!

My heart sank as soon as I entered this screen. Looks scary as hell!

I was suddenly reminded of that horrible Police Quest 2 puzzle where the locker combination I needed was on the back of my own business card. I tried looking at the back of Suzi’s membership card. Eureka!!! “Well, well. Look at this! Suzi wrote her locker number plus some words on the back of her spa keycard.” The locker number was 69, and the words were “Bippi’s Island Liquors, Nontoonyt Community Centre and Dewey, Cheatem & Howe.” (65 points) I began looking at the numbers on all the lockers until I found what appeared to be locker 69. When I tried to open it, I found that it required a combination to get into. Clearly the three business names on the back of the membership card were the key to figuring out the combination, but I couldn’t immediately see how. My first thought was that the manual was likely to be of assistance, so I opened it up.

Well at least that part of Police Quest 2 helped me out eventually

The first thing I came across was the ad for Dewey, Cheatem & Howe. I immediately noticed that the address at the bottom was 555 Hibiscus. Could the third number in the combination be 555? I looked up ad for Bippi’s Island Liquors, and was disappointed to find there was no address at all on that ad. In fact, there were no numbers whatsoever in the ad! Clearly I was going to have to take a different approach. I began to wonder whether the combination might have something to do with the page numbers that the ads were found on in the manual. Bippi’s Island Liquors was on page 10. Dewey, Cheatem & Howe was on page 16. However, the article that covered the different craft alternatives at Nontoonyt Community Centre started on page 6 and crossed over to page 7. I tried both 10, 6, 16 and 10, 7, 16 as the combination for the locker. Neither worked!

I couldn't find any hints in the Bippi's ad. Surely it's the page numbers!

A little bit confused, I decided to check out the other two doors in Fat City. Maybe there was a hint behind one of them, although I doubted it. The door to the right was my next choice, but when I tried to open it, the man behind the counter yelled “You can’t go in there! The tanning booth is out of order. We’ll get it fixed real soon now.” I therefore tried the third door, which I was able to enter! (3 points) Inside was a sort of studio, with monitors, speakers, a microphone and a camera set up. More importantly though, there was a bikini clad woman doing various gym exercises. I wandered over and talked to her, forgetting about Patti and lockers altogether. It’s nice to meet you, Larry Laffer. From the looks of that stomach, you’ve come to the right place!” I was then given the customary facial close-up and I have to say that in this instance I wasn’t all that impressed.

Fawning over Bambi (sorry!)

Reminding me of Cyndi Lauper, Bambi’s bleached hair, eighties style, and overuse of makeup just isn’t my thing. That wouldn’t stop Larry though, so I set about trying to discover what makes her purr. “My, my! Your body is certainly ready for one of my workouts!” While honesty is a fine trait, this woman is downright brutal! I asked her about this workout, and she responded with “maybe after I finish this aerobics video project, Larry.” Not to be put off, I then typed “help with video”, to which she said “not from you, Mr. Husky! What could a tub-o like you know about fitness?” Well, it seemed to me that both Patti and Bambi were not going to have sex with me until I lost a few pounds, so I had no option but to head back to the locker room and try to figure out the combination. This is actually where I finished my second session of Larry III, and it’s taken me close to a week to catch up on the posting side. I’ve played one further session since then, which I’ll report on in the coming days.

I'm pretty sure she just wants to have fun!

Session Time: 1 hours 00 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 30 minutes

Note Regarding Spoilers and Companion Assist Points: I've written a set of rules regarding spoilers and companion assist points. Please read it here before making any comments that could be considered a spoiler in any way. The short of it is that no points will be given for hints or spoilers given in advance of me requiring one. Please...try not to spoil any part of the game for me...unless I really obviously need the help...or I specifically request assistance. In this instance, I've not made any requests for assistance. Thanks!

Thursday 21 February 2013

Game 29: Leisure Suit Larry III - A Taste of Cherri Tart

Larry Laffer Journal Entry 3: “I haven’t got laid since I last wrote! However, I have laid the groundwork for what I figure will be an awesome score! Cherri Tart is a seriously hot performer, and she totally dug me. She invited me backstage and all I have to do to get some of that fine booty is hand over a piece of my land! OK, that does seem a little bit excessive, but I'm sure it will be totally worth it! Plus I'm feeling more than a little bit horny after my activities with Tawni were crustaceanally interrupted. Speaking of Tawni, I managed to scam the last twenty dollar bill off her, which I used to bribe my way into Cherri's show. I'm not going to say that my actions are all entirely honourable, but I’ll do what it takes to find myself a woman!”

Where we left off: The Comedy Hut

So I'm coming to the end of my initial exploration of Nontoonyt Island. By the end of my last post, the only place I knew I hadn't visited yet was the cave near Chip ‘n’ Dales. That would obviously be my next location, but I also felt like there was quite a bit of unfinished business. I’d not yet been able to do anything at Fat City, the Casino, Chip ‘n’ Dales, the Comedy Hut or the park with the TV. As for outstanding tasks, I was feeling pretty certain that sharpening the knife was going to be key to getting the grass, and that in turn would allow me to disguise myself as a salesman to trick Tawni. I couldn't think of why I might do that though (surely not to have sex with her again), but I didn't really have anything else to go off. First thing first though, I set off to see where this cave entrance led.

The downside of open adventure environments is locations that are inexplicably closed until needed to push the story forward

The answer turned out to be nowhere! While at first it looked like I’d gained access to a lovely looking beach, any attempts to walk over to it resulted in me falling off a ledge to my death (depth perception wasn't one of the highlights of the SCI0 engine). I tried looking around in the cave and eventually hit on the fact there were wild orchids growing on the walls. When I tried to pick them I was told to “move closer to the flowers near the cave opening (presumably it saved time to create the flower picking animation in one spot only), so that’s what I did. Larry then picked several of the flowers and put them away with the ginsu knife, the soap-on-a-rope, and the granadilla wood shaped like a giant black penis. (25 points) With the map fully explored, I set out to find something to sharpen the knife on.


While I expected it to take a long time to find the correct place to do this, it actually took about a minute. My first thought was that the fountain might be a good place to sharpen it, but “the fountain’s rough surface would only dull your knife.” At least it proved to me that I was on the right track!  I then tried sharpening it on the stairs to the casino, not really expecting it work, but it did! (50 points) I bee-lined back to the grassy patch near Chip ‘n’ Dales and successfully used the knife to collect some of the native grass. (20 points) Things were starting to move along at a rapid rate, and I hoped my instincts would continue to work for me. I typed “make skirt”, and was thrilled when Larry weaved “the wild grass into what you hope will pass for a primitive, island native outfit.” (30 points) I’d literally gone from 128 to 253 points in under five minutes and was on a roll! I knew exactly what I’d need to do next as well, so set out for the cabana.

Patrick Bateman knew someone was watching him...

I entered the first cubicle and typed “wear skirt”, which did indeed cause Larry to strip out of his leisure suit and put on the makeshift native skirt. (10 points) I then realised that I might also be able to carve the granadilla wood with the sharpened knife too, and this train of thought also turned out to be correct. (50 points) I wasn't certain if I would need anything else to complete the native salesman disguise, but I decided to go back to the beach where Tawni was to see what would happen. As soon as I arrived, Larry started calling out “souvenirs” and Tawni was completely fooled. “Genuine native-islander designer-labelled erotic carvings for only twenty dollars!” As you can tell by Tawni’s response below, she was fairly impressed by the small statue with the huge phallus, and she handed over her last twenty bucks. (25 points)

She knows what she likes!

I had a think about what I might do next, and figured the twenty dollars would likely play a role. Where better to spend some cash than the casino! I went to the cabana and changed back into my suit, with Larry throwing the skirt away in the process. I then made my way to the casino and I actually spent a bit more time trying to use the lift at this point. When I was once again unsuccessful, I made my way up to the showroom to see whether I would now be able to get into the show with my free pass. I still wasn't able to, but tried giving the maître d’ the twenty dollars. “Well, well, look at this! I seem to have found a nice, front row seat available here. Allow me to show you to your seat!” (50 points) My roll continued and I’d now gained 270 points in a little over fifteen minutes! Part of me wondered whether that twenty dollars might have had an alternate use elsewhere, but the Leisure Suit Larry series isn't really known for alternate puzzle solution. Bonus points for sure, but not alternate solutions.

I see how it works around here!

The view I had of the show certainly didn't suggest that I had a front row seat, but I could see well enough. After a few dancing girls did their stuff on stage, they made way for the real attraction. “And now, lady and gentlemen, the moment you've all been waiting for: the star of our show, Miss Cherri Tart!” The lights went out and then a spotlight fell upon a scantily dressed woman with feathers attached, gyrating and spinning on a pedestal. The audience showed their appreciation for Cherri by throwing dollar bills on-stage  After mere seconds, the pedestal was lowered into the stage and the lights came back on. “That concludes tonight’s two-hour spectacle, “Nontoonyt For You!” You must clear the auditorium now, as our second show begins shortly.” I was then informed that I’d come in late, so had only witnessed the last minute of what was a two hour show all up.

"Lady" and gentlemen! I didn't even notice that while I was playing!

I knew that Cherri would play a further role in the game, since she is mentioned a few times in the tourist manual, but I couldn't think of how I might benefit from having witnessed the show. While I was standing outside the showroom, the answer became very obvious. A woman came out of the locked door and made a phone call. I walked over to her and introduced myself. “Hello yourself, Larry, I'm Cherri Tart.” (5 points) I was then given the close up view of the “bathrobed beauty”, and began the usual “talk” in an attempt to find out what she might respond to. Larry asked her what she wanted to do with her life, to which she responded “I’d love to quit show business, get a little farm some place far out in the country where I could be alone, and raise organically-grown vegetables, fruits and herbs.” Larry then joked that he was in the opposite situation: “I have hundreds of acres of land coming into mu possession but I’d love to be in show business.”

I'm not sure whether Cherri is hot, or whether she looks like Linda Blair at the peak of her possession

This of course made the solution obvious. I typed “give land to Cherri” and got the result I expected. “Why, Larry, I’d do ANYTHING for a little piece of land.” (25 points) Unfortunately, Cherri had to run to another show, so she excused herself, telling me to come back and knock on the door when I have the deed to the land. OK, so I needed to get the deed to the land. How exactly was I going to do that? I looked over my map, wondering who might be able to assist with such a thing. My first thought was that there might be something in the mailbox at Larry’s old house, so that’s where I went. There wasn't anything there, so I had a good long think about it. I picked up the Tourist Manual and took a look through for anything that might give me a hint. There was an article on page 16 for “Attorneys at Law” named Dewey, Cheatem and Howe! The address listed on the ad was 555 Hibiscus, but of course that didn't mean anything to me. Had I missed a location entirely???

Oh, Cherri, I can just picture your naked body on top of me!

The map I’d produced looked pretty complete, and there were really only a few locations where I might have missed something. I began by visiting the strange park with the hanging lights and TV. I couldn't find any paths out of there that I’d missed, but there was a newspaper sitting on the side table that wasn't there previously. I picked it up and read it: “Coming Soon! Here! At our own Lounge and Piano Bar! Passionate Patti at the Keyboard. Watch for her – you won’t regret it!” Maybe this meant that Patti could now be seen at the bar in the casino? That wasn't my goal right now, but I was keen to find out whether I was right. I made my way to the bar in the casino, and was disappointed to find it was still completely empty. I did figure something out while I was standing in the foyer though. The manual described making leis (native flower arrangement), and since I had some flowers in my inventory, I tried typing “make lei”. It worked, and Larry weaved the wild orchards into a lei. (50 points)

Here! As in right here!?

I continued on my search for a hidden location. I walked from screen to screen, looking for any hidden pathways that I might have missed. When I reached the beach screen where Tawni had previously been, she surprisingly wasn't there any more  Her towel was still lying on the beach though, so I picked it up. (2 points) Interestingly, I noticed that as soon as I picked up the towel, a red lizard began scampering back and forth on the rocks in the foreground. I wasn't able to pick it up or do anything with it that I could figure out, but it can’t have just appeared for no reason. I started just trying things, and eventually came across the solution by blind luck. When I typed “use towel on lizard”, Larry said “OK”, then lay the towel down on the sand, took all his clothes off, and lay down to sunbake. This was all done in such a way that no private parts were shown, and once he was completely horizontal, the lizard stood up on the rock in a way to appear...well...just take a look at the image below! (30 points) While this gave me one of the biggest belly laughs in the game so far, I couldn't help feeling like I’d merely fluked it.

Seriously...who came up with this visual joke!

I can only assume that the tan will be necessary for something (or someone) later on, but I'm not sure what. So I wasn’t having much luck finding the lawyer I needed, but my exploration was bearing fruit. I made my way back to the two jungle areas, as they seemed to be the most likely places for a hidden pathway. It’s here that I found what I was after! In the top right corner of one of the jungle screens, I was able to twist my way upwards and to the right until I came out on a new screen. I have to say that the pathway is pretty much indiscernible unless you know it’s there, which is only partly due to the low quality graphics in the jungle. I thought I’d been pretty thorough while map-making and I know I'm not the only person to struggle to find it. Anyway, the company logo outside the building on the new screen was DCH. Dewey, Cheatem and Howe! I’d found the lawyer I needed and could now get the deed to the land and most likely score with Cherri! Despite having so much trouble finding DCH, this session was an incredibly productive one. I guess it was really just the pay-off session after completing (well almost) the early introduction and exploratory part of the game, but I enjoyed it a lot!

I wonder how many players never found this place and gave up?

Session Time: 1 hours 00 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

Note Regarding Spoilers and Companion Assist Points: I've written a set of rules regarding spoilers and companion assist points. Please read it here before making any comments that could be considered a spoiler in any way. The short of it is that no points will be given for hints or spoilers given in advance of me requiring one. Please...try not to spoil any part of the game for me...unless I really obviously need the help...or I specifically request assistance. In this instance, I've not made any requests for assistance. Thanks!

Tuesday 19 February 2013

What's Your Story? - Laukku

Every time it appears I'm finally about to run out of What's Your Story responses, someone sends their answers through in the nick of time. This time it's Laukku that has come to the rescue! Another reader from that "traditionally forgotten land between Sweden and Russia", Laukku is already proving to be a welcome and knowledgable (particularly when it comes to audio) member of The Adventure Gamer community. So without further ado...

Laukku: No comment would do this image justice

My home country is… Finland, a very fine land indeed :-)

My age is… 20. I was born on the 2nd of April, just after April Fool's day.

The first adventure game I played was… Probably Monkey Island 1 or 2, but I was so young that I don't really remember. Heck, I didn't even understand English back then and still they were some of my favourite games!

My favourite adventure game is… Gabriel Knight 1. I just really like exiting thriller-type mystery stories, especially in adventure games. GK1 in particular has so many exiting, memorable moments! I would talk more about them but then I'd have to spoil you.

After the "best games ever" discussions this week, I want to play this game more than ever!

When I’m not playing games I like to… Draw and play the violin.

The one TV show I never miss is… Sherlock. Can't wait for the next season. In the meantime I'm watching Elementary, currently airing in Finland as Holmes NYC. It's another Sherlock Holmes set in modern times, in New York, if you didn't guess. ;-) What really got me interested in it was reading a description of its version of Watson: A young female Asian living in the US, and is apparently smart enough to do her own deductions and research. It made me think instantly of Grace Nakimura from the Gabriel Knight series!

I like my games in (a box, digital format)… copied to my hard disk, but just for the sake of convenience. I do have the original boxes of Legend of Kyrandia 1 and Kings' Quest V around, though.

King's Quest V: Would anyone really willingly go back to this?

The thing I miss about old games is… the many completely different audio and video technologies. For music especially, there were FM synthesis (AdLib and the Sound Blasters, Sega Genesis), low-fi PCM samples (SNES, Amiga, Macintosh), and MIDI (MT-32 and General MIDI). Sometimes I go to YouTube to compare the various ports of old games, or try out a game with a different video or audio card selected (well, the ones that DOSBox emulates). I like fiddling with the original configuration programs and it's one of the reasons I prefer playing games in DOSBox instead of ScummVM.

The best thing about modern games is… 3D environments. I've been playing the Frogwares Sherlock Holmes games recently, and the ability to actually explore things in detail and in first-person greatly adds to the immersion.

I rarely look at modern games these days, so I'm always surprised when I see the quality of the graphics

If I could see any band live it would be… The Beatles, I guess. I'm not much of a fan of any modern bands or even pop music in general, and the whole Beatles appearing alive today would be a miracle worth attending. (No, I didn't misunderstand what you meant by "live". ;-)  I know English well enough.)

My favourite movie is… Mad Max 2, currently. I'm not even much of an action film fan, but the first time I saw it several months ago, I was absolutely awed throughout the film by how well made it was. I tend to watch films very analytically, and pick out any weaknesses in them (such as violations of "show don't tell", pacing problems...). There weren't any major flaws in that film that I could recognise. It was super entertaining. The characters were smart and believable. It was stylish, with good music and writing. Even just the opening narration is awesome.

I seriously don't think I've seen this movie since I was about 14. Your comment has made me want to revisit it!

One interesting thing about me is… I guess I'll use this section for random trivia that didn't fit anywhere else. Ilmari wanted to know the story behind my username, so here goes: My first name IRL is Lauri, and my family calls me with various nicknames that share the first syllable, such as simply "Lau", or random Finnish nouns such as "Laukku" (bag, case) or "Laukaus" (gunshot). I decided to use "Laukku" as my standard Internet username. I also have a YouTube account ( with various random videos of DOS games.

I really am out of responses now, so if anyone else wants to send theirs through and get 20 CAPs in the process, please send them to

Monday 18 February 2013

Game 29: Leisure Suit Larry III - Pediculosis Gargantuous

Larry Laffer Journal Entry 2: “I scored big time today! I came across (so to speak) a really hot blonde on the beach named Tawni. She wasn’t the smartest girl I’ve ever met, but she had no defence against my natural charm and sex appeal. Oh, and my credit card helped too, but I’m sure it was more of the former and less of the latter. If it wasn’t for those damn sand crabs that got in my clothes, I might have made more of the opportunity. Oh well, it took me no time at all to get into her pants, so surely I can have more success around here. Since that experience I’ve checked out the casino and the comedy hut, and pretty much know my way around this whole island. Now that I’ve got my bearings, it's time to go back on the prowl. Perhaps being single again is not as bad as I thought it would be!”

Well...I've had worse!

The previous post finished with me losing my job at Natives Inc. That left me with no home, no job, and no woman! It was time to do something about it, and the screen to the south of the fountain seemed the perfect place to start. Lying on a towel was a fine looking blonde, topless yet lying face down. As soon as I arrived, a native appeared out of nowhere, trying to sell “genuine Nontoonyt souvenirs”. This captured the woman’s attention, and it was revealed that her name was Tawni. When she asked the native what he was selling, he responded with “genuine plastic souvenirs handmade in the city of rsubfqsdf.” Clearly confused by his response, she asked him to repeat the origin of the items, to which he said “Hong Kong” under his breath. I couldn’t help have a chuckle at this, particularly as it reminded me of that awesome scene in Army of Darkness (Google "army of darkness klaatu barada nikto" if you don’t know what I’m referring to).


Instead of realising the “native” was a crank, Tawni showed her intelligence level by responding with “As long as they’re genuine, give me several.” She then happily handed over US$300! I asked the seller whether he had a permit to sell souvenirs as he walked away, but he told me to beat it. “Can’t you see I’m just trying to make a quick buck off the Americano here?” I turned my attention to Tawni, introducing myself as “Larry; Larry Laffer.” I was then given a full screen view of her body and while I don’t want to come off as creepy, I wouldn’t be doing my duty if I didn’t report this as the finest representation of a woman in adventure games to this point. It’s a scene that had quite the effect on me as a young boy, and there’s no doubt I spent quite a bit of time trying to get Tawni to do the business with Larry (although now I wonder what took me so long). After a couple of typically suggestive comments from Al, I was shown a different perspective of her, being her face. Just like in Larry 1, all the persuading would be done face to face with my potential lovers.

Come have to admit...Tawni makes EGA look like VGA!

For those of you not aware of the mechanics of these conversations, the idea is simply to “talk” to the women you meet in the hope of getting a clue as to what gift they might like to receive. When I talked to Tawni, Larry began by informing her that he “will soon be coming into a major real-estate holding”, but her response of “is it a shopping mall” made it clear she wasn’t going to be that easily impressed. I didn’t have much in my inventory to offer her, but the credit card stood out as something a greedy bitch might want. I saved my game and gave it to her, and it was quickly apparent that this was the key to getting in her insubstantial pants. “Oh, Larry, it’s the perfect gift; the right size, the right shape, and the right color: gold! And I think I know the perfect way to express my appreciation to you, too. Come here, big boy!” Well that was easier than I remembered! (50 points)

Well she does look a lot hotter than that hooker I slept with in game 1.

The scene that follows is actually more humorous than anything else, as Tawni jumps on Larry and rapidly humps away, with no suggestion that any of his clothes are removed. While this was going on, the damn souvenir guy came back for another shot. “I have some fine ginsu knives” was all it took to distract Tawni from our embrace. “Excuse me for a moment, will you? Something else has popped up.” She then got into a lengthy conversation about the knives while I lay on the ground waiting. Eventually she paid using the credit card I’d just given her, handing me the knife to hold while she finished the necessaries. (40 points) It’s here that Larry paused to consider whether Tawni’s rude behaviour was too offensive for him to continue making love to her, but quickly decided nothing really could be. Unfortunately, the action was quickly halted anyway, as “hundreds of tiny sand crabs” crawled inside Larry’s suit pants. I’m sure you can imagine how the scene unfolded as Larry ran around shouting that he had crabs!

When you're having a bad day...

Interestingly, my attempts to recapture Tawni’s attention hinted that it may be possible given the right circumstances. “Obviously she still remembers you, Larry. If only you had some sort of disguise.” Heading back north to the fountain (with Tawni's knife still in my possession), I figured the next place I’d check out was the casino. Within the strikingly pink building, I was given the option of heading straight up into the casino proper, or walking right to the hotel lobby. I decided to check out the lobby, and found myself face to face with a particularly unhelpful clerk. He continuously told me that this was a “private hotel” and that only those with a reservation are welcome. When I asked to rent a room, he told me he knew who I was, and that my "money is no good here"! I chose to ignore him and hopped in the lift to see what the other floors held, but this didn’t work out very well. While the keyhole on the panel next to the floor buttons suggests I can’t yet go to any other floors, the parser simply didn’t seem to understand any of my attempts to do so anyway. I tried “press button two”, “press the second button”, “press button for floor two” etc., but it was all met with comments like “Congratulations! You have dumbfounded this game!”

Lifts always seem to be a problem in Sierra games. I seem to recall having similar problems in another Quest. Maybe Police Quest? Or was it Larry 2?

Hoping it might become clear later, I left the lobby behind to explore the rest of the casino. There are two locations of interest in the north section, being a showroom to the left and a bar to the right. Both of them are accessed by passing rather neat walkways, where the casino action is shown to the player in mirror reflections. The designers could just have easily used a more obvious perspective, so I think these otherwise unimportant screens hint at the creativity of the artistic individuals involved in making the game. I chose to check out the showroom first, which had a locked door, a phone I couldn’t use, and a maître d’ waiting to accept tickets to the shows. This reminded me of one of the articles I'd read in the Tourist Manual! “Now appearing bi-nightly, the lovely and talented star of stage, screen and backstages everywhere, Cherri Tart, in the Nontoonyt Casino Showroom. Just show your pass to the maître d’ for an evening you’ll never forget! PASS NUMBER 25695”

!flesrouy htiw yppah yrev leef ouy teb I

I typed “show pass”, to which the maître d’ told me he would only accept free passes from page 12 tonight. I opened up the manual and found an image of a ticket at the bottom of page 12, containing the numbers 00993, so I typed that in. It looked like it would work, but then I was told that the maitre d' “must have made a mistake. It appears there are no more seats available for this show. I’m so, so sorry. But, perhaps something will open up later.” Noting that down as another location to revisit later in the game, I set out for the bar. That also turned out to be rather unproductive, as the bar was completely empty! I sat at the bar, but simply couldn’t find anything to do there, eventually deciding to leave the casino and continue my exploration of the island. Walking back outside to the fountain, I realised it might be possible to walk to the north east of the casino itself, and that instinct turned out to be right.

I make sitting alone in an empty bar look cool!

Round the back was a cabana, presumably where hotel residents get changed to go down to the beach. There were three cubicles, yet one of the doors was locked. I entered both of the others and read the graffiti on the wall. In one cubicle was the word “ZAX”, but while I feel like I should recognise what that means, I don’t. The second cubicle contained the words “Two Guys from Clovis”, which is obviously a reference to The Two Guys from Andromeda. I then searched through the garbage can alongside the cabana, but only came up with a postcard that read “The weather is here; wish you were beautiful”, which Larry returned to the can. None of this really helped, but looking at the sink on the wall at the side did. I found an unusually shaped “soap on a rope” hanging there, so I added it to my inventory (12 points). With nothing else to do there, I moved on.

I kind of expected to find George Michael hanging out around here

Since the early parts of the game were spent following the big pink pointer, I started backtracking through all the screens I’d visited, looking for pathways I hadn’t yet taken. Making my way back into the jungle screen where the phone booth had appeared, I took a north east path I’d ignored the first time around, reappearing on a dirt path in front of a club called Chip ‘n’ Dales (apparently a famous striptease joint). Typing look highlighted an entrance in the wall to my left, as well as a patch of indigenous grass on the path. I tried getting some of the grass, but the “tough tropical island grass slices your hands to ribbons and refuses to budge”. I then tried using the knife on the grass. “Good idea! You try and try to cut the grass with your dull knife, but it is just not sharp enough!” Hmmm…I hadn’t expected that! I began to wonder how I might sharpen the knife and decided to check every screen thoroughly for something appropriate as I travelled through them.

Grass is normally easier to get on island resorts. Or so I hear!

Leaving the grass for now, I tried to enter Chip ‘n’ Dales, only to find that “Nontoonyt’s finest Adult Entertainment” was currently closed. I then had a choice of checking out the cave or seeing what was off to the right of screen. I chose the latter, and found myself standing outside the “world-famous Comedy Hut”. I entered and took a seat at the only available table. I was then subjected to mildly humorous stand-up comedy by a dude by the name of Paul Paul. Leisure Suit Larry has never been particularly politically correct, but allowing the player to type in the name of their “three favourite ethnic groups” so that Paul can make jokes about them is off the scale. I can’t even include screenshots of many of the jokes Paul Paul told in my presence, because they make fun of ethnic groups I personally chose. Here’s a non-racist example of the joke quality though: “Why did the chicken cross the basketball court? He heard the referee was blowing fouls.” I watched Paul Paul for about two minutes, but he just didn’t seem to run out of material. Eventually I got up and left the club, ignoring his taunts about me getting a sense of humour.

You have no one to talk to when you're having an orgasm!!! Get it!?

I then explored the area outside the Comedy Hut, but all I found was a path leading off in the top right corner. Following it took me to a cliff, with some bamboo in the distance. Strangely, I was unable to walk very far, and kept being told that “there is nothing before you but limitless jungle. There’s no need for a guy like you to lose himself in that forsaken wilderness. You’d better head back to the bright lights of the city, Larry!” I’m very sceptical that this little area would have been built into the game if it didn’t serve any purpose. In fact, there’s a big hint in the manual that this will be the case. In Jungle Joe’s “Tips on Hiking on Nontoonyt” article, he writes “If you wander into the bamboo, it may be you never come out again. If this happens, I hope you picked lots of juicy Nontoonyt Nectarines to nourish you.” Time will tell whether I’m reading too far into things. I’ll stop here, but this is by no means as far as I’ve gone in the game. In fact, I’ve increased my score to 906 points (they start coming thick and fast from this point onwards). I’m still really enjoying the game too, but have to admit that I’m a little bit stuck right now. I’ll post again in the next couple of days, and hopefully by then I've figured out how to proceed.

Yeah, like you'd go to the effort for no reason. I know you better than that Mr. Lowe!

Session Time: 0 hours 45 minutes
Total Time: 1 hours 30 minutes

Note Regarding Spoilers and Companion Assist Points: I've written a set of rules regarding spoilers and companion assist points. Please read it here before making any comments that could be considered a spoiler in any way. The short of it is that no points will be given for hints or spoilers given in advance of me requiring one. Please...try not to spoil any part of the game for me...unless I really obviously need the help...or I specifically request assistance. In this instance, I've not made any requests for assistance. Thanks!