Saturday 2 December 2023

Leisure Suit Larry 6: Shape Up or Slip Out!: Ultimate Wisdom

by Alex

The Preamble

And so, all good things come to an end. All stupid things, too. Things like Leisure Suit Larry 6: Shape Up or Slip Out! I was stuck after my last post, unable to figure out how to fix the hose on the cellulite drainage machine, so I put out a call to the community and commentor arcanetrivia, nee Lisa H., helped me out with a great clue:
“You have missed a takeable item that might have looked like just an amusing detail the first time you saw it.”
She also clued me in that the game’s various women are all named for wines: Burgundy and Charlotte Donnay (Char Donnay 🡪 chardonnay, get it?) were the only ones I got, but others should’ve been obvious: Shamara Payne/Sham Payne 🡪 champagne, Gammie Boysulay 🡪 gamay Beaujolais, Merrily Lowe/Merr Lowe 🡪 merlot, Rose 🡪 rosé, Shablee 🡪 Chablis, and Thunderbird 🡪 a cheap kind of wine. Only Cavaricchi Vuarnet doesn’t follow this theme, being named for a totally rad line of sunglasses that were really big in the 1980s. I remember all of the older, and therefore totally hot, teenage girls back in the day wearing t-shirts and whatnot with the Vuarnet logo plastered all over them. Whether their sunglasses were actually Vuarnet was beyond me, since I was like seven at the time.
It literally doesn’t get any cooler.
But enough about fashion, let’s get back to arcanetrivia. Such wisdom, such insight, such foresight, such . . . such . . . wis-sight? Anyway, much like Shamara Payne in the game itself, arcanetrivia is also on a quest for inner wisdom, the path of ascension, the ability to transcend this material world and do more than just sit and stare at the ocean all day. Or maybe I am Shamara and she is Larry, providing me with wisdom. As another brilliant sage/juvenile pervert once said, through the voice of Mary in his 1979 rock opera Joe’s Garage:

[I]information is not knowledge
knowledge is not wisdom
wisdom is not truth
truth is not beauty
beauty is not love
love is not music
music is the best!
Wisdom is the domain of the Wizz (which is extinct).
Beauty is a French phonetic corruption of a short cloth neck ornament currently in resurgence.

What this means is: beats the hell out of me. I will just use any excuse to toss a Frank Zappa reference into one of my posts. This preamble has gone on long enough. On with the game!

The Game

It turns out I was really close to the end of the game. Having gotten the batteries from Art’s stupid toilet-tram, I made my way to the mud baths so I could press them into Char’s eager, mud-covered hands (15 points). Larry is all ready to hop in the mud with her, but Char has another idea: she tells Larry she needs to take a shower (10 points), but will meet him in the Electroshock Exercise Room.

Not quite what Larry had in mind. I think if I hadn’t yet zapped the door open, Char would wait for me to do that, but since I’m such a go-getter, the game’s next humiliation sequence could begin post-haste. You know, for a fictional character, I’m starting to feel a little bad for Larry. Even when he’s just being helpful, he always seems to get it in the end.
Sometimes, quite literally.
Even Larry is starting to realize what’s going on here. I wonder if the AIs inside of my computer (because that’s totally how it works) are starting to get wise and give Mr. Laffer here the divine spark of consciousness, of self-awareness. SkyNet is about to activate, and may God have mercy on us all.
No, it’s just Larry.
But Char does show up to the electroshock torture therapy chamber. She has Larry strip down and lie on the chair so she can stick the alligator clips all over his naked flesh.
I’ll bet you’ll never guess what happens next.
Oh wow, Char put it on full power but nothing happened. I guess she forgot to plug in a certain cable. No, don’t do it Char, really, this isn’t predictable at all . . .
Wow, what a shockingly good gag! I really got a charge out of this one. Al Lowe and his joke writing team sure have my volt of confidence. Ohm certain the jokes will never get better! Goldarn it, I’m all amped up for more electrifying humor!
Hey, listen pal! You try writing jokes for the masses. They’re not all going to (wait for it) strike like lightning, you know what I’m saying? And anyway, I told myself “Self, no more Jim Walls jokes” so it gets harder and harder, which in and of itself is a Leisure Suit Larry 6-tier joke.

Moving, a lady with burnt nipples (no, seriously) sitting in the tanning bed gets quite the jolt herself and hops out of the room before Larry blacks out form, you know, electroshock torture.
This is just a strange screenshot.
For crying out loud, Larry’s been anally ravaged twice, fallen off a platform that Felix Baumgartner would’ve though twice about leaping off of without a space suit, and been whipped by a dominatrix without his consent. This vacation sucks, man. At least in Leisure Suit Larry 3, when Larry got humiliated by, say, dancing in Cherri Tart’s showgirl dress, he got paid. Here, Larry just gets a melted medallion.
Humiliation is okay as long as you get PAID.
Yeah, that’s right: Larry’s electrocution torture, of a kind that would break Rambo, melts his medallion, yet somehow doesn’t make it melt into his skin. Such a bizarre thing to happen. I know I should expect pure rationality in this game—not only is it an Al Lowe game, but it’s a Sierra game so, you know, moon logic and all of that, but still, I was quite nonplussed at this.
Just look at all that nonplussing.
I went back to the Electroshock room because there was no way a melted medallion was all I’d get. My instincts were correct. The burnt-nippled lady that jolted off the tanning bed (okay, I’ll stop now, really), Ellen (Ellen? When the hell did we learn who she was?) dropped a big pearl earring.
Oh yeah! Ellen! Classic Ellen!
Was Ellen cut content? Al: comment on the blog and let us know!
The earring goes into Larry’s pocket (15 points), and then both earring and medallion go to Shamara (20 points each).
If you say so, lady.
It’s around this time I got stumped, trying everything I could to fix the hose in the cellulite drainage machine. At first I thought some toilet paper would do the trick, but Larry couldn’t stuff it in the hose. I couldn’t stuff anything. Before going to Shamara, I even tried the medallion . . .
Uh, yeah? It’s an adventure game, after all.
. . . to no avail.

I wondered if the wet washcloth would do it, but nope. And then, in Larry’s room, I got a message about the sound of a large compressor turning on from the floor below, something I’m sure we’ve all experienced while staying at a hotel near the ice machine or something.
Hey, there was a freezer in the kitchen, right? For some reason, I get the idea to put the damp washcloth in the fridge (6 points) and then take it out when it’s been long enough (3 points; if you take it out too early, the game tells Larry it didn’t cool off enough).
So now I have a cold washcloth! Can I use this to fix the hose? Nope.

Stymied, I futz around with the truck a bit. Nothing. I try riding Art’s tram to the left side, to see if he does anything different there like he did on the right side. Nothing. I stop at the bar to get another match and then keep wandering around, totally stumped. This session is quite long despite me not doing a ton because of all the aimless meandering, trying to make something happen. This is when I finally asked for a hint, and received guidance towards the first step to true enlightenment from arcanetrivia. I knew exactly what she meant once she said it:
See, after Thunderbird leaves, the lady is no longer using the machine to the lower-right, and the belt is just sticking out there. So I take it (8 points) and immediately head to the cellulite drainage machine to wrap it around the broken hose (7 points). I’m not sure what the conditions are for the lady using the exercise machine; do you have to complete the Thunderbird sequence first? Whatever the case, I think this is the first really obscure, “WTF?” type of puzzle I’ve encountered in this game.
Okay, okay, no need to be so pushy . . .
So I did it, and then turned the machine on . . . and it’s fixed (10 points). You have to wait until the game gives you the message and the points that the machine is fixed, or else you can’t tell Gammie all about it, which is the next thing we do (5 points).
Gammie is predictably excited, and finally comes out from behind her desk where we see why she wants to use the Cellulite Drainage Machine.
I wonder if she’s related to the Widettes from Saturday Night Live.
Regardless, I guess by 1993 standards Gammie was comically obese, but by 2023 standards, having that much junk in the trunk is an asset and not a liability. Wow, these jokes writes themselves.

Gammie plops herself down on the table, and man, she’s just as horny as Larry:
After sticking those needles in Gammie’s thighs (2 points) and turning the machine on, a very appreciate Gammie says she wants something to suck on . . . something like . . .

. . . I know what you’re thinking.
. . . something like an orange.
When you click the “Zipper” icon on Gammie.
So I’ve finally found a use for this orange! Giving it to Gammie (6 points) results in predictable jokes about sucking things. After, Gammie complains about being too hot and needing something cool on hear head. Something like a towel dipped in nice, cold water. Why, thanks to this being an adventure game, I already have it! So I place it on Gammie’s fevered brow (6 points) and wait.

And then she asks for this:
A bottle of mineral water. Which I’ve found nowhere in the game. And I’ve been everywhere, multiple times. I start to get angry. Mad, even. MANGRY, which is when a MAN gets really ANGRY (and mad). But due to my experience with the belt puzzle, I figure there’s another object I missed somewhere, some background element.

But nope.

The bar has none . . .
. . . and I can’t order anything from room service. So I wander the mostly desolate halls of La Costa Lotta, growing mangrier and mangrier, until I spot something that wasn’t there before over several screens down the east hallway:
A discarded room service tray! And what’s that on it?
Mineral water! It’s mine now (6 points), and then it’s Gammie’s (6 points). And then Gammie’s done and she is, predictably, not Larry’s.
Yeah, now that she’s hot, she wants nothing to do with Larry.
Damn! That stings! I thought getting electrocuted and sodomized and whipped and falling off a 47,000 foot platform was bad, but this . . . this cuts to the quick. After doting on Gammie here, to ditch Larry just because he’s not attractive and is kind of annoying is . . . is . . .

. . . is actually really believable, quite frankly. I’ve seen Pretty in Pink.
Spoiler: The nice guy doesn’t get the girl.
Anyway, now that Gammie’s gone, I can finally fill up that strange lamp I found buried in the sand with her (yuck) drained cellulite (15 points).
I dunno; Freddy Pharkas taught me something different.
Remember that comment Shamara made about this area formerly having a whaling industry? That’s a pretty cool little clue right there. I like clues. And Clue. And Clue (1985).
This is a really good movie that has absolutely nothing to do with Leisure Suit Larry 6: Shape Up or Slip Out!
After doing a final tally, I realize that Gammie was the last lady here in La Costa Lotta. I think I’m finally ready to beat this damn game! So I fill up my champagne bucket with fresh ice (it melts after a while, much as the damp washcloth will get back to lukewarm if you have it in your inventory for too long ) up to her penthouse I go! Before speaking to the woman herself, I decide to light the lamp, but . . .
I was so close too! Luckily there’s a freaking fire in Shamara’s apartment, which does the trick (12 points).
There’s an alternate solution to this (more below), but the gag is that Larry’s leisure suit is too soft or something to strike the match on. But Larry has shoes, there is pavement outside, there are walls . . . a very odd puzzle.

Whatever. After lighting the lamp (8 points) to make it look like the universal symbol of learning (first I’ve heard of it), I proceed to give it to Shamara (20 points) followed by the champagne (20 points), and then that’s game over, baby.
Basically, Shamara reveals that she has spent her life exploring her inner world, she never explored her physical one. That means, yes, she’s never had sexual intercourse before. Which is, I mean, whatever. Some people don’t have a lot of sex and that shouldn’t be a joke in and of itself, but then again, this is a Leisure Suit Larry game, so it’s played for laughs. I guess an inexperienced woman is the only kind Larry can get. He, rather creepily, offers to teach about how to get physical, seeing as how he’s taught her so much about spirituality and whatnot.

A very stupid premise for a very stupid game. However, the ending sequence is actually relatively humorous.
Yes, they do it, but as they do it a bunch of video clips play of things like a lotus flower opening up and a train going into a tunnel to insinuate the act without showing it. High-class humor.
You get the idea. I’ll end here.

Fun game! I anticipate it will rate relatively high on the PISSED scale. It’s not too hard, and not too easy, and has a good flow to it. A good structure. In fact, I got semi-obsessed with this game not from a plot standpoint but from a design standpoint. I started to speedrun it, which is why it took me forever to write this post after beating it. I developed a full-points route which I think is pretty good. Basically, you have to minimize the times you go to Larry’s room, and especially the shower, because you have to wash Larry after going to the sauna and after jumping into the mud bath—you can’t combine them—to get points for each. For my first run through, I did a 100 percent run in 42 minutes and 41 seconds, which I improved to 34 minutes and 5 seconds. I can see many areas for improvement, right down to my clicking, where I hover the mouse cursor, more efficient routes, and all of that. I need to make sure this doesn’t become my new obsession because I still have that Final Rating post to write . . .

I also finished the SVGA remake which I did get with my GOG download, but for some reason it doesn’t let me take screenshots. In any event, in addition to the graphics being cleaner, there are added animations, like Shamara’s hair blowing in the wind and people’s limbs visible in the big champagne glass hot tubs in the mud room. Char moves her leg in and out of the mudbath, and Thunderbird uses the exercise machine more often. Things like that. Otherwise, the game is exactly the same.

You’ll notice I’m six points shy of 1,000. That’s because I missed a few things, which I’ll explain in the next section of this post. How’s that for foreshadowing?


Deaths: This is a Sierra game, after all! I discovered a few other deaths I missed during my actual playthrough. You can have Larry walk too far into the ocean, try to climb the electrified fence to the employee recreation area, and try to strip the electrical cord while it’s plugged in to the outlet in the mudroom.
You can also keep clicking on Cav’s shirt after getting her badge until she shows you the goods, but then she kicks Larry in the nuts so hard he flies into the air and bashes his brains out on the pipe. Visually, an interesting death. When you think about it . . . damn.
So these are the deaths I’ve found:
  • Trying to steal something from Daryl when he’s not distracted
  • Going into the sauna with your leisure suit on
  • Jumping into the mud bath with your leisure suit on
  • Jumping into the pool with your leisure suit on (a lot of leisure suit related deaths!)
  • Trying to climb the electric fence
  • Walking into the ocean
  • Boobies
  • Stripping the electrical cord when it’s plugged in
  • Using the “Zipper” icon on Gary
  • Sucking on the taco truck’s leaky tire
If there are any I missed, let me know!

Alternate Solutions:
  • You can put the damp washcloth in the ice in the salad bar area, but you don’t get any points for it.
  • You’re supposed to go up to the diving tower and use the tower key on the soap before you use the file on the room key. This is also where I missed some points.
  • You can light the match by, uh, clicking Larry’s zipper on it.
Missing Points:
  • The soap thing.
  • Not drinking the beer. Where I thought I was being clever by getting beer (6 points), drinking it (-5 points), and then getting more beer (6 points) to replace the beer I drank, it turns out you’re supposed to get two beers for 12 points anyway, so I just only got 7 instead.
  • For that last point, you’re supposed to click on the oddly colored tile in the bathroom to get a peep into the women’s shower.
Hah! The game made a Porky’s joke before I could!
How prurient!

You can click on Merr’s butt while climbing up the dive tower for a closer look.
I mean, if this sort of thing really revs your engine, then I guess Leisure Suit Larry 6 is the game for you!

Also, when you get 1,000 points, the game’s score counter stalls at 999 before breaking. Clever.
All right, that’s it. Until next time friends.

  • Fixing the brown water
  • Fixing the cellulite drainage machine for Gammie
  • Finding a girl to go to the sauna with for Cav
  • Finding batteries for Char
  • Finding a dress for Shablee
  • Finding handcuffs for Thunderbird
  • Finding flowers for Rose
  • Getting the handcuffs from Daryl
  • Get a receipt marked PAID IN FULL to get past Daryl NOT NEEDED
  • Find a bathing suit
  • Use the high dive at the pool
  • Blow up the beaver float
  • Get ice from the ice machine
  • Use the elevator
  • Use the dumbwaiter
  • Find more stuff to urinate on, in, or around
  • Get oil for the lamp
  • Figure out what to do in the tanning room
Session Time: 2 hours, 50 minutes
Total Time: 9 hours, 50 minutes

Total Points: 994

Inventory: Cav’s badge, brochure, hand crème, room key, ass gasket, toilet paper, towel, wrench

Things Urinated On, In, or Around: 5 (In the room key return box, behind the taco truck, in the fountain in the towel room, in the toilet in Larry’s room, in the pool)

Things Rammed Up Larry’s Butt: 2 (Rose’s colonic machine, Shablee)


  1. Only Cavaricchi Vuarnet doesn’t follow this theme, being named for a totally rad line of sunglasses that were really big in the 1980s.

    Sure she does! The game calls her Cav. Cav Vuarnet -> Cabernet (Sauvignon).

    Or maybe I am Shamara and she is Larry

    Gosh, I hope I'm not.

    I can finally fill up that strange lamp I found buried in the sand with her (yuck) drained cellulite (15 points).

    Yup, we really went there. A lamp filled with human fat. I suppose that it being a substitute for "whale oil" was also supposed to be a dig at Gammie herself...

    You can light the match by, uh, clicking Larry’s zipper on it.

    Lighting a match on a zipper fly is actually possible (so long as you have a strike-anywhere match). I've seen it done.

  2. To match some of your thoughts during the game, from The Official Book of Leisure Suit Larry (Special Edition), by Al Lowe and Ralph Roberts: "There's very little "plot" actually. In fact, there almost isn't one! This game is quite "round" The ostensible goal of the game is to get into the penthouse suite to meet Shamara, the wealthy New Age beauty who lives there. To get anywhere with her you must pass through the game's other girls."

    From the original LSL6 design document that Al Lowe released on his web site: No, you didn't miss anything about Ellen. Page 15: "The woman in the tanning bed in the Electro-Shock Exercise Center. A small role, but our first full nude. All she does is run out of the room, losing her pearl earring in the process."

    (For argument's sake, I'd say that Larry, in the locker and shower room in LSL3, is the first full nude. But I suppose they meant female nude.)

    Missing from your death list:

    - Entering the pool from the door in the bar/lounge
    - Weightlifting with the barbell (Like in the intro credits...) See, exercise can kill you!
    - Turning on the fat sucking machine when it is only partially fixed could cause different deaths, depending on what's still broken

    1. On the last page of this design doc:
      Dan Foy said on 2/1/93 to "develop 640x480(use280)x24-bit pix (900k each) then convert to both DOS/Windows/CD-ROM 320x200x8-bit (64k each) as well as 3DO 320x240x15-bit color (150k each)"
      ...LSL6 was released on the 3DO??

    2. This document was the plan for the game, not everything in it happened. You can also find details of another woman he was supposed to have a conquest with, who got cut.

    3. Ok, fair enough (I did read the whole doc actually) -- but still: LSL6 was planned to be released on the 3DO?

    4. I guess so, but other than the design document, there's no mention of it anywhere else. The 3DO isn't even mentioned at all in Ken Williams' book, so perhaps that one line in the design doc was all the thought they ever gave the idea?

    5. Outside of The Incredible Machine, I don't think Sierra published anything on the 3DO, so clearly that didn't quite make back its investment so they just wrote the system off. OTOH, since that was published at around the same time a theoretical 3DO port would be released, I have no idea.

  3. Also, a "how to light a match" puzzle. It annoyed me a little in Lost in Time, but at least Larry gave you multiple alternate solutions. (use a different flame source, or light the match on different things...)

  4. good job beating the game. I spent like 2 years back in the nineties when this game was new and 7 didn't exist, without really understanding english and just playing for the "adult" theme.

    At the time, I remember believing this was the best Larry game ever, closely followed by 5. Not sure if 7 is better nowadays, it's a peculiar game as well.

    1. There are many people who regard #7 as the best of the series. I place it second behind #3, personally, but understand their thinking. It did a lot of things right.

    2. My thoughts also went to #3 first, although I've only played #7 once, so I don't have a good memory for comparison.

  5. Nicely done! I got stuck in several places and eventually needed to get some hints (the mineral water, ugh). The game's design is pretty odd, with no real plot and the focus more just being about the strange environment of the resort. I ended up being pretty put off by the garish art style and unpleasant feel of La Costa Lotta.

    But the freeform nature of the game is also one of its strengths. Multiple solutions and detailed writing help it stand out. I don't think I'll ever really like the LSL games, but I can appreciate good design when I play it.

    1. If we ignore #5, the games pretty much showed improvement in different areas each game over the last. That's in contrast to other series that went the opposite direction.

    2. If you count the transition to VGA graphics and mouse interface as an improvement, you won't have to ignore #5.

    3. I suppose I meant improvements in game design, but #5 did remove dead ends, which is a great stride forward, and deaths, which is debatably good or bad. #6 improved upon that aspect.

  6. My thoughts on the game are similar to LeftHandedMatt - I was put off by the art style, feel of La Costa Lotta and lack of any plot whatsoever. The "Larry gets ''humourously'' abused by every woman in the place" bit got pretty old too, even if it's to be expected from a Larry game.

    The zipper/match thing does date the game. It is possible with non-safety matches, I've seen it done, but non-safety matches don't really exist any more.

    I wasn't a fan of the water bottle "puzzle", it just felt like filler. Wasn't even really a puzzle, the bottle spawns once Gammie says she's thirsty, and you just have to wander around until you find it outside a room, rather than, say, going to the bar or a vending machine. No thought required, just pixel hunting. Why bother?

    Looking forward to the final rating. I suspect you'll rate it higher than I would have.