Worst Infocom game....

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Ben Anderson

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Apr 11, 1994, 1:53:14 AM4/11/94
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Well, I've just bought Lost Treasures II - the main reason being it
contained the most adventures I hadn't solved back when I had my
trusty c64! Those were the days! Waiting for the disk drive to stop
spinning after each command etc Anyway I thought Lurking Horror was
one of the best Infocom games I played along with Planetfall. So I've
started to work my way through the games in this package and I have to
say Seastalker has to be one of the worst games I have played. It seemed to
be way to easy for a start and most of the game could be solved by answering
the prompts certain characters gave. For example, you were asked for a weapon
you could attach to the Scimitar. Now the weapon required was a bazooka
which one of the characters was meant to give to you. However, answering
the 'do you know of a weapon we could use' question set you up with the
bazooka even if you knew nothing about its existance. Way too much of the
plot was given away without doing much. I seem to remember Infocom grading
their adventures with a level eg 'standard level' I would think this game
had to be a beginners level - I was a bit disappointed. Cutthroats was
much better although not of the quality of some of the classics. What
would be the best game in the Lost Treasures II collection?

Ben

E. Kontei

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Apr 12, 1994, 5:55:11 PM4/12/94
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In article <2oaoka$c...@goanna.cs.rmit.oz.au>, b...@yallara.cs.rmit.OZ.AU (Ben Anderson) writes:
> Well, I've just bought Lost Treasures II -

Ditto. Same reason, too.

[Complaints about SeaStalker]

> I seem to remember Infocom grading their adventures with a level eg
> 'standard level' I would think this game had to be a beginners level

The opening screen proclaims "A junior-level adventure". It's
the easiest Infocom game ever, obviously meant for children.

> What would be the best game in the Lost Treasures II collection?

Define "good". Do you want hard puzzles,
interesting puzzles, or a good story?

I play Infocom games for the "joy of discovery", I want to
see what comes *after* the puzzle, not the puzzle itself.

Because of that, I like AMFV (*fascinating* concept) and what little I've
seen of Trinity. I can't stand Plundered Hearts, never could get past
the opening sequence (Harlequin romances *annoy* me). I like Nord & Bert,
but only because it's so unlike any other Infocom game.


P.S. It pisses me off that I have to go and get the Hollywood Hijinx
spoilers from Rice because they didn't photocopy the *back* of Uncle
Buddy's glossy. >_< Lord knows which other "surprises" I'll get when
I try the other games...
--
E n r i q u e C o n t y
"Conty is overrated" -- Various people
co...@cbnewsl.att.com jes...@ihlpm.att.com
Disclaimer: You're not dealing with AT&T

Richard Develyn

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Apr 13, 1994, 9:24:24 AM4/13/94
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> P.S. It pisses me off that I have to go and get the Hollywood Hijinx
> spoilers from Rice because they didn't photocopy the *back* of Uncle
> Buddy's glossy. >_< Lord knows which other "surprises" I'll get when
> I try the other games...

I've been sort of worried about missing bits of documentation in LTOI 1
and 2 since I bought them. I didn't realise there was something missing
for Hijinx, though I do know about the Moonmist letters and some bit
about Ballyhoo (which is in one of the IF FAQs).

Since the other missing stuff is available from the IF archive site,
could someone please provide a transcript of the Hijinx missing material
in a similar fashion?

Richard

--

Richard Develyn from Hastings, Sussex, England ( r...@cix.compulink.co.uk ).
Software engineer (datacomms) for Cray Network Systems. Married to Caroline.
Baby daughter Sophie (b. 3/11/92). Hobbies: Dr Who, FRPG, SF, Curry,
quality computer games, philanthropic discussions.

E. Kontei

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Apr 13, 1994, 6:27:05 PM4/13/94
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In article <1994Apr13...@skaro.demon.co.uk>, ric...@skaro.demon.co.uk (Richard Develyn) writes:
> I've been sort of worried about missing bits of documentation in LTOI 1
> and 2 since I bought them. I didn't realise there was something missing
> for Hijinx, though I do know about the Moonmist letters and some bit
> about Ballyhoo (which is in one of the IF FAQs).

My mistake. I hadn't started on Hijinx when the person told me this.
It turns out that what I needed was the poem on page 70 of the LToI II
manual, on top of the photo.

.

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Apr 14, 1994, 4:10:44 PM4/14/94
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Ben Anderson (b...@yallara.cs.rmit.OZ.AU) wrote:
: started to work my way through the games in this package and I have to

: say Seastalker has to be one of the worst games I have played.

The worst Infocom game EVER was by far, Leather Goddesses of Phobos II.
Talk about the worst sequel, EVER.

- Frank

Senator Stu Bushman

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Apr 15, 1994, 12:46:39 PM4/15/94
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That was after the activision destruction of the real infocom...if we want
to discuss graphical Infocom, anyone remember Circuit's Edge or Mines
of Titan? The ONLY quality graphical infocom game ever was Zork Zero,
and that's about as graphical as a text adventure should get...

-stu
--
Stewart S. Bushman | The more I study religions the more
sbsm...@uhura.cc.rochester.edu | convinced I become that man never
sbs...@uhura.cc.rochester.edu | worshipped anything but himself.
bus...@augustus.me.rochester.edu| - Sir Richard Francis Burton

DBlaheta

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Jun 16, 1994, 2:04:03 PM6/16/94
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In article <1994Apr15....@galileo.cc.rochester.edu>,

sbsm...@uhura.cc.rochester.edu (Senator Stu Bushman) writes:

>That was after the activision destruction of the real infocom...if
we want
>to discuss graphical Infocom, anyone remember Circuit's Edge or
Mines
>of Titan? The ONLY quality graphical infocom game ever was Zork
Zero,
>and that's about as graphical as a text adventure should get...

Well, now, you're saying two different things here. "Interactive
Fiction" and "Text adventure" are most definitely *not* synonymous.
For example, Zork Zero was among the best games I've played. It fits
every definition of Interactive Fiction, but it is in no way a text
adventure. It is, incidentally, mucho better than Zork Zero.

As for the worst game, I'd have to agree that Seastalker was pretty
bad. But I *really* disliked Moonmist. I'm not sure why, either.
Probably because they tried so hard to conform to the map in the box,
and it made the actual mapping of the game confusing.

Don Blaheta
dbla...@aol.com

Andrew C. Plotkin

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Jun 17, 1994, 11:23:37 AM6/17/94
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Excerpts from netnews.rec.arts.int-fiction: 16-Jun-94 Re: Worst Infocom
game.... DBla...@aol.com (1037)

> For example, Zork Zero was among the best games I've played. It fits
> every definition of Interactive Fiction, but it is in no way a text
> adventure. It is, incidentally, mucho better than Zork Zero.

Er, what? That better be a typo... :-)

Zork Zero was definitely a text adventure. The graphical puzzle insets
did not detract from that.

I agree with your general claim that I.F. != text adventures. Myst is
I.F. but not text. (Maybe that was the example you meant to type?)

> But I *really* disliked Moonmist.

Heh. I agree. Two reasons:
First, I originally played it on Apple 2 off 5.25" floppy, and it was
*unbelievably* slow. Ten to fifteen seconds of drive-spinning every time
you moved.
Second, the "copy protection" device of having major several room
descriptions *not in the game*. (They were in the brochure that came in
the game package.) This pretty much slaughtered my "feel" of the game.
I'm the sort of player that always turns on "verbose" and leaves it on
for the whole game. If I don't see the descriptions whizzing past, I
feel like I'm floating in the void.

After an hour or so I just tossed it aside. Even after I got it for Mac
in the LToI collection, thus solving the speed problem, I couldn't get
interested. No other Infocom text game ever bored me, so the author of
Moonmist must have had some unique skill...

--Z

"And Aholibamah bare Jeush, and Jaalam, and Korah: these were the borogoves..."

Steve Derby

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Jun 17, 1994, 2:17:50 PM6/17/94
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Worst Infocom game? Very little question in my mind... Journey was terrible.
A bit like an electronic "Choose Your Own Adventure" book, but more
frustrating. Make a wrong turn, find out a half-hour later that you've
lost the game (in some cases). Ugh!
Most of the "puzzles" (if you can call them that) could only be solved
through trial and error as well, but I *did* like the endgame puzzle
(color/powder combinations), but god help you if you don't have the right
reagents.

A close second, IMO, was Circuit's Edge.

Mark Hughes

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Jun 18, 1994, 12:39:35 AM6/18/94
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On 16 Jun 1994 14:04:03 -0400, DBlaheta (dbla...@aol.com) is alleged to have written:
: For example, Zork Zero was among the best games I've played. It fits

: every definition of Interactive Fiction, but it is in no way a text
: adventure. It is, incidentally, mucho better than Zork Zero.

Zork Zero is better than Zork Zero? Hmn. Intruiging logic. But then, almost
anything was better than Zork Zero, so maybe even Zork Zero was better than
itself (that's very Zen...)

: As for the worst game, I'd have to agree that Seastalker was pretty : bad.

ACH! Heretic! Burn 'im!

I *LOVED* Seastalker. Sure, it was a pretty simple game, but the NPCs were
very well done. Most of the Infocom games had a static environment and the
people were just as static as the world... Seastalker really broke with that
tradition. And the submarine was perfecto, too.

-Mark Hughes
"I don't believe that Infocom ever made a *bad* game until the graphical games.
IMHO, YMMV, etc."

Carl Muckenhoupt

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Jun 18, 1994, 2:46:36 AM6/18/94
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For me, the worst was definitely Shogun. Linear as all get-out, but with
the added twist that you didn't have to die for the game to suddenly
end - all you had to do was act differently from the character in the
novel. (!) Plus, some of the puzzles felt really out-of-place. I
actually felt insulted by the maze sequence: you spend several turns
escaping from archers sent to waylay you, desperately struggle to lose
them, the tension builds, and suddenly it plops you in the middle of
this tacky, amateurish graphical maze game. Talk about losing the momentum.

Carl Muckenhoupt


DBlaheta

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Jun 18, 1994, 4:38:03 AM6/18/94
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In article <ci0PztC00...@andrew.cmu.edu>, "Andrew C. Plotkin"
<ap...@andrew.cmu.edu> writes:

>Er, what? That better be a typo... :-)
>
>Zork Zero was definitely a text adventure. The graphical puzzle
insets
>did not detract from that.
>
>I agree with your general claim that I.F. != text adventures. Myst
is
>I.F. but not text. (Maybe that was the example you meant to type?)

Yeah, oops, that was a typo. I meant Return to Zork. (Oops oops
oops)

WHich is, from what I've heard, very much like Myst and 7th Guest.

Don Blaheta
(oops oops)
dbla...@aol.com

Louis Giglio

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Jun 20, 1994, 5:17:37 PM6/20/94
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Spoiler warning! Stop reading now if you plan to play Infocom's
_Infidel_ in the future!

I'd have to say _Infidel_. You basically play an obnoxious character
during the entire game. Worse, you have no control over the ending: you
die, period! Pretty rotten after spending a fair amount of time on the
game, trying to be a nicer character.


Louis

Mathematical Institute, (0865) 2-73525

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Jun 21, 1994, 11:18:57 AM6/21/94
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In article <1994Jun2...@betsy.gsfc.nasa.gov>, gig...@betsy.gsfc.nasa.gov (Louis Giglio) writes:
> ... a claim that _Infidel_ is the worst Infocom game...

I absolutely dissent from this. Infidel has one of the cleverest puzzles
I've ever seen in any game, and is original indeed for its time (or indeed
today). Give it a try: it gets much more interesting after the first
15 or so locations.

It's a bit invidious naming "worsts", but I suppose the last few must
qualify. Of the early games, I find Zork III the weakest.

Graham Nelson
Oxford, UK

Michael Liu

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Jun 21, 1994, 8:53:20 PM6/21/94
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In a previous article, nel...@vax.oxford.ac.uk (Mathematical Institute, 0865) 2-73525) says:

>I absolutely dissent from this. Infidel has one of the cleverest puzzles
>I've ever seen in any game, and is original indeed for its time (or indeed
>today).

While I did find _Infidel_ interesting, it became "read the writing on the wall"
before each puzzle after figuring out the hieroglyphics fairly early on. As a
result, the game was quite short for me (after finding the pyramid).

Michael Liu
ae...@Freenet.carleton.ca

John Switzer

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Jun 22, 1994, 12:09:54 PM6/22/94
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In article <1994Jun21.151857.23922@oxvaxd> nel...@vax.oxford.ac.uk (Mathematical Institute, (0865) 2-73525) writes:
>In article <1994Jun2...@betsy.gsfc.nasa.gov>, gig...@betsy.gsfc.nasa.gov (Louis Giglio) writes:
>> ... a claim that _Infidel_ is the worst Infocom game...
>
>I absolutely dissent from this. Infidel has one of the cleverest puzzles
>I've ever seen in any game, and is original indeed for its time (or indeed
>today). Give it a try: it gets much more interesting after the first
>15 or so locations.

When I played Infidel, I saved right before the end game, so after playing
the game to its ultimate conclusion, I restored and then wandered around
the tomb, camp site, etc. without having to worry about anything bothering
me. It was pretty neat.
--
John Switzer | "For too long, those who play by the rules and
| keep the faith have gotten the shaft, and those
CompuServe: 74076,1250 | who cut corners and cut deals have been rewarded."
Internet: j...@netcom.com | -- Bill Clinton, 1992 Democratic Convention

DBlaheta

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Jun 23, 1994, 7:06:02 AM6/23/94
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Without spoiling for those who haven't played, what puzzle did you
find so clever? I thought most of them were pretty lame.
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