Saturday, 27 August 2016

EcoQuest - Anemone and Octopus

Written by Reiko

Adam Greene Journal #5: "Time to explore farther! I've done all I can in the city for now. It's too bad everywhere else is so full of trash too. And something nearby is wayyy worse than just trash! All the plants near one cave are dead. It must be that poison that's threatening the city. I've got to get in there and find out what it is without killing myself."

We're on the next stage of the quest to find Cetus, which seems to involve actually leaving the city to start searching. I swim down out of the city and find myself back on the overlook screen where I first saw the city after emerging from the kelp maze. This time I have full control, though, and plenty of time to look around.

Statue pieces don't count as trash, fortunately.

I notice a giant statue head off to one side that looks intriguing. As I approach it, the view shifts over to the next screen and I can look at it more closely. Apparently there's a "flashlight fish" stuck in the statue's ear.

I also find some trash to dispose of [10] (a doll, a plastic flamingo, an old teddy bear, and a pair of polka-dot shorts), plus a little mirror, which I pocket [2]. I need to catch that fish in the statue, though. I thought initially the mirror might lure it out if I reflected some of its light, but no. I think I need to catch the fish in the glass jar I have, but the problem is that the lid is stuck tightly on the jar. I tried to get it open earlier by using it on the fisherman, but nothing happened. There must be another way, but I don't see it yet, so I keep exploring.

Farther to the right of the stone head, there's a screen full of healthy fish and sponges and anemones and stuff. At the moment it seems to just be an excuse for some more educational descriptions, so I move on into the narrow hole leading upwards. Oddly enough, I break the surface and discover a skeleton. I thought I was deeper than that. It looks like the sky isn't far above, anyway, but it's described as an air pocket.

Good work, Mr. Greene, you've found cause of death.
(5 CAPs for the first person to get the reference.)

The skeleton, dressed as a pirate, is transfixed with a pike. The skeleton's belt holds a skeleton key which is also pierced by the pike. I don't seem to need it yet because the treasure chest next to the skeleton readily opens [5], but all I find is a lazy crab that scuttles away. I try pulling on the pike next [2]. First I yank too hard and tumble back into the water, but the second time I pull [2], the pike shatters and the key falls into the water.

This isn't a timed mini-game or anything. It doesn't matter how fast I follow the fish.

I dive back down, but when I reach for the key, a red fish swoops in and swallows it! I chase it three screens east and back, but when I get back to the screen with the hole, the fish has disappeared and an anemone is looking very uncomfortable. Delphineus said anemones will eat anything but spit out whatever isn't digestible, so I assume it will spit out the key eventually. So while I'm waiting for that, I wander off to investigate the screens I went through while chasing the fish.

This time it's Adam lecturing about the environmental danger.

Immediately, though, I hear a cry for help from above. I swim up and find a huge net full of bones of various sea animals, plus one very trapped lobster who Delphineus names as Persephone, daughter of Demeter. I free her by cutting the net with my sharp shell [5] and she swims off again. Delphineus says this must be the net of bones mentioned in the prophecy. So I'm on the right track, I guess.

We have a conversation about how these nets are death traps for all sorts of animals, even ones as large as dolphins. In fact, Delphineus's family disappeared and the Oracle told him she saw a net like this, so it's likely they too were caught in one. Too bad I can't do anything about this one. (Ecological message +1)

This screen looks terrible. Yuck.

I swim back down and check on the anemone. It burps but doesn't seem ready to spit out the key yet. Maybe I have to help it along with something, but I don't see what yet, so I'll give it some time. I swim farther east and find some kind of derelict maintenance vehicle crashed on the ocean floor, plus some glowing dead fish and a fishing lure. This whole area looks rather dead, due to spilled oil from an abandoned drilling rig (Ecological message + 1).

The lure might be useful, so I take it [2]. Then I check out the access panel in the vehicle. First I find a pair of lovebird fish or something, which sheepishly swim away for more privacy. The storage compartment holds tools - an old hammer disintegrates when I pick it up, but under that there's a steel saw [2]. Hmm, that's some heavy-duty cutting there. Maybe I can take down that net now?

Another use for the trident.

But first, I notice that there's a toilet half-buried in the sea floor too, with its tank stuck shut. I'm not sure why I care, but I get out the trident and use the blunt end to pry it open. I find the round float from the toilet mechanism to be in good shape. Then Adam points out that the prophecy calls for a floating orb. Well, this seems to fit the bill, although it's hardly the first thing you might think of for that.

I can't use the steel saw on the huge net, unfortunately, so I go back to the anemone and try waving the fishing lure at it [10]. It gets greedy, thinking it's another little fish, and snaps it up, belching out the bones of the previous fish in the meantime, including the key it ate, which I recover [2]. "Adam tries not to think about where it's been." Heh.

No watching tentacles do anything in this game.

On the screen below the net, there's an octopus hiding in a small opening in the coral. He almost seems to be fishing, with a coiled wire leading out of his hiding place. If I pull on the wire, the octopus grabs me with a strong grip. Hmm. I need a strong grip to open my jar. I leave the jar within reach of the octopus, but apparently he's really antisocial, so I swim to the next screen and back. Now my jar is open [2]!

I go back to the flashlight fish and hold up the open jar to the stone head's ear. The fish swims right in, and now I've got my glowing light [10], another piece of the prophecy. I check the Oracle's description and find that I still need some armor and a silver wire.

I wonder what would happen if you did this before getting the jar open.
 Does the octopus come back later?

Well, the octopus has a wire. I go back to him and look through my inventory for a bit before trying the mirror [10]. It works: he thinks he sees another octopus, which he charges out to fight, but then he sees me and flees. Now I can swipe his cable [2].

I haven't seen any armor yet, so I go check out the dark cave to the east of the derelict vehicle. Delphineus says it's very cold in there too, and very dark, of course. I take out the flashlight fish and release it, which lights up the cave enough to see what I'm doing.

Pulling over a dozen stones gets a bit repetitive.

In the back, there's an opening blocked off by a number of small stones. Apparently that's the "wall of stones" mentioned in the prophecy. I start pulling stones free, revealing a green light coming from the passage beyond. There's no puzzle here, though; I just have to keep pulling stones free one by one. After ten stones, Delphineus complains that he feels funny and his sonar feels off.

After fourteen stones [5], I find a metal box [5] that had been concealed within the wall. The box is labeled "Joe's Dumping - You Pump it, We Dump it." Ugh. I try the skeleton key on it, but the lock's stuck. I poke around in my inventory, but nothing helps until I try the oily rag on the lock [5]: that helps get the salt free so I can open it with the key [5].

Treasure! Except...not really.

Inside I find something that's basically a hazmat suit to protect against chemical exposure. Perfect "armor for a modern knight" to protect against whatever poison's in the water behind that wall. Apparently it was affecting Adam also. Now I'm ready to face it - I've got everything the Oracle mentioned, and I'm up to 534 points out of 725.

Inventory: oily rag, trident, sharp shell, fishbone tweezers, water pump, lionfish spine, healing potion, mirror, skeleton key, shielded cable, toilet bulb, steel saw, transmitter, prophecy scroll
Ecological messages: 2 (15 total)

Session Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time: 6 hours 15 minutes

Note Regarding Spoilers and Companion Assist Points: There’s 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!


  1. Thankfully, the skeleton is not considered waste as it is bio degradable.

  2. The line about "cause of death" sounds like something David Caruso would say on CSI: Miami.

    1. I'd really like to know what the reference is. I do recall something like this from a movie or TV show or something...

      "He was stabbed to death with a sword"
      "How do you know that?"
      First character moves to show skeleton with sword wedged between ribs

    2. Nobody's gotten it yet...

  3. Thought you guys might like to hear that they just added a bunch of Sierra games to Steam! Here's the list (courtesy of Polygon):

    Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers ($5.99)
    The Beast Within: A Gabriel Knight Mystery ($5.99)
    Gabriel Knight 3: Blood of the Sacred, Blood of the Damned ($5.99)
    Phantasmagoria ($9.99)
    Phantasmagoria 2 ($9.99)
    Police Quest Collection ($9.99)
    Quest for Glory 1-5 ($9.99)

    I think most (if not all) of these were already on GoG, but still, pretty cool!

    1. The original version of Gabriel Knight 1 coming is nice, as I didn't like the remake that much - worse art and voice acting.

      I think the only adventure game remake (ignoring the ones of Sierra's AGI games) that looks arguably better than the original is Monkey Island 2.

      On a side note, I just noticed that apparently steam has merged the "point & click" and "hidden object" tags. AARGH!

    2. Nice find, Paul.

      Also King's Quest Collection is back on Steam(but not in my region) - they took it away when the new King's Quest was near release - probably to avoid confusion.

      I did like the Gabriel Knight remake, but still rate the original more - but I suspect in my case that's largely nostalgia talking.


  4. By taking the lid off the toilet, didn't you just turn one piece of rubbish into two pieces? (Ecological message -1)

    1. Haha! And given all the other crap he picks up, I don't know why I can't recycle the whole darn toilet, for that matter.

  5. Answering your question, yes: the octopus comes back later so you can still open the jar. It sits on top of the rock instead