Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

News:

For WME related articles and tutorials visit WME Resource Center.

Author Topic: Most ridiculous inventory puzzles EVER!!!!  (Read 6042 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

perfectpixel

  • Lurker
  • *
  • Karma: 0
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1
    • View Profile
Most ridiculous inventory puzzles EVER!!!!
« on: September 01, 2009, 02:36:26 AM »

In my opinion, inventory puzzles are a massive plague on the commercial adventure industry. Developers always add them in as "filler" puzzles to make the game longer, hence, more bang for your buck(another example of filler puzzles are slider puzzles and mazes). They are annoying(especially when entire games rely on them), but sometimes so ridiculous they are hilarious. One example is in the game "Secret Files: Tunguska" You are trying to eavesdrop on a guy in his house. To do this, you must put an old slice of pizza in a cat's food bowl on the porch so the cat comes to eat. Then, you must tape your cellphone to the cat's back and put it on record mode. Then add salt to the cat's food so he goes inside for a drink, and records the man's conversation. But when the cat back out, he climbs a tree. To get him down, you have to go to a payphone and call your cellphone, and the ringing startles the cat and he jumps down from the tree. You take your cellphone back and your done! (except for the fact that the rest of the game is formed of puzzles like this. God help you.)

What are some other ridiculous and illogical inventory puzzles in adventure games? 
Logged

Shagma

  • Lurker
  • *
  • Karma: 0
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 27
    • View Profile
Re: Most ridiculous inventory puzzles EVER!!!!
« Reply #1 on: September 01, 2009, 04:01:07 AM »

jajajajaja that is hilarious indeed.
Logged

MrMyro

  • Lurker
  • *
  • Karma: 0
  • Offline Offline
  • Gender: Male
  • Posts: 8
    • View Profile
Re: Most ridiculous inventory puzzles EVER!!!!
« Reply #2 on: September 01, 2009, 01:17:56 PM »

How about the 'disguise' puzzle in Gabriel Knight 3? How stupid was that one?!
Logged

Tol

  • Guest star
  • Occasional poster
  • ***
  • Karma: 0
  • Offline Offline
  • Gender: Male
  • Posts: 53
  • Oro?
    • View Profile
    • www.blender3d.cz
Re: Most ridiculous inventory puzzles EVER!!!!
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2009, 08:01:01 AM »

Ok, we cut the sliders and mazes away (and I am all for it). Then we cut inventory based puzzles.  Now all that it left from gameplay is walking around and dialogues, enviromental puzzle now and there. Walking around is not much of fun. Enviromental puzzles are great, but hardly can support whole game with gameplay. Dialogues, when written well, are great, but rarely acted well by voiceovers actors. And there are very expensive thus when we will set heavily talkative adventure as a standard, there will be few of them around because few studios can afford good actors in good studio.

For me adventures are about (good) inventory based puzzles. Story is important, but when I want realy good story, I read a book instead. Mood is important too, but moody game without gameplay it´s just annoying interactive movie forcing me to click on several areas on each screen.
Or maybe I am just missing the point  :)
Logged
Playing: something good
Developing: Mafia II
Finished:Tale of a Hero

Jyujinkai

  • Global Moderator
  • Frequent poster
  • *
  • Karma: 1
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 351
    • View Profile
    • Jyujinkai's WME Development Blog
Re: Most ridiculous inventory puzzles EVER!!!!
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2009, 09:28:09 AM »

I agree with Tol.... adventure game ARE inventory puzzles... puzzle box puzzles are good as well but can not support an entire game unless the game itself is just a massive puzzle box (like myst). Still I think perfectpixel's point is not inventory puzzles are bad.. just crazy "wtf" logic of some of them are just stupid... personally i hate the "pick up everything in site" aspect of many adventures.. There should be a logic reason to pick up an item... not just grab everything in site and try to use it on every hot spot you see. IMO This is the crux of good adventure game design... making strange illogical item puzzle chains like that stupid cat thing in the first post... is not the game device of item puzzles that sucks.. it is teh game design itself.
Logged
<Antoine de Saint-Exupéry> In any thing at all, perfection is finally attained not when there is no longer anything to add, but when there is no longer anything to take away...
<Carl Sagan> If you want to make a apple pie from scratch. You must first... invent the universe

MrMyro

  • Lurker
  • *
  • Karma: 0
  • Offline Offline
  • Gender: Male
  • Posts: 8
    • View Profile
Re: Most ridiculous inventory puzzles EVER!!!!
« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2009, 05:28:32 PM »

I agree with the previous two. Inventory puzzles are the core of adventure games, if they are done correctly. The true inventory puzzle should allow the user to logically pick up an item that would genuinely be of use (who can go without taking that ladder/length of rope/spare key/piece of blank paper), and then using them either in a very logical way, or even better, to use them in a sensible way but one that you might not immediately think of.

A classic example of this, which I have seen in many adventure games, and more often than not utilised in a successful way is the 'paper under the door, poke the key out through the keyhole' puzzle. This has been done in many games, but it always works in a way that suits the game. Some puzzles can be overused to the point where they become a chore (maze puzzles being a BIG culprit).

Personally, I find that the most successful, and therefore most satisfying to beat, type of puzzle is the sort of timed puzzle that has been used a lot in the new Tales of Monkey Island games. A puzzle where a set of events happens, and you can watch them play out without intervening to see how they play out, and then you have to work out what you can do during that sequence of events to get the required results.

Timed puzzles that require you to just click as damn fast as you can to run from one place to another before it times out are very frustrating though!
Logged

serializer

  • Lurker
  • *
  • Karma: 0
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 11
    • View Profile
Re: Most ridiculous inventory puzzles EVER!!!!
« Reply #6 on: June 28, 2010, 01:06:43 PM »

Interesting discussion. Telltale have been strongly moving away from inventory puzzles in the Sam & Max Season 3. Instead we have Max's psychic powers to use in different situations, and a number of dialog and environment puzzles.

In the latest episode (They Stole Max's Brain) there was pretty much NO inventory. From playing this episode, and from reading a lot of reviews and forum comments, it has made the game WAY too easy. It's now basically just like watching a cartoon, and occasionally getting a set of choices that you click through until you find the right one to move on. Max's powers are basically like a very small inventory that you have to use over and over again, and it quickly gets obvious as to where you need to use each power.

Telltale have been so good at making inventory puzzles that are very logical, so I really hope they will start to bring them back! They are a cornerstone of adventure games, and Telltale's have proven this in my opinion.

Also I think that while "maze" puzzles are a very easy way to extend a particular sequence of a game, they shouldn't always be seen as "unneccesary fillers". They are a classic part of the first two Monkey Island game, and are a fun way to delay the player from reaching certain parts of the map until some puzzle has been solved. Of course, I could just be saying that because I have a maze segment in Garden of Doom :)
Logged

MKG

  • Lurker
  • *
  • Karma: 0
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 12
    • View Profile
Re: Most ridiculous inventory puzzles EVER!!!!
« Reply #7 on: June 28, 2010, 04:23:32 PM »

There's nothing wrong with a good LOGICAL inventory puzzle. However, inventories themselves can be illogical. The ladder ("Is that a ladder in your pocket or are you just pleased to see me?") has already been mentioned. A ladder near to where it could be used is OK. Picking that ladder up and carrying it around for the next four hours while interviewing the Prime Minister just doesn't ring true. Nor does putting that vial of highly concentrated acid into your pocket.

Basically, if the game logic is to be sensible, then so must the contents of your inventory be sensible. You can, in the real world, pick up a ladder and move it, but you can't carry it around for a week in a very small bag.

I'm sure you've all met the coconut that is vital to the plot.  You need that coconut, but it's at the top of a tree. You can throw a rock at it. You can hit it with a long stick. You can climb a ladder. You can wait for it to fall all by itself. Those things would, in the real world, all work - so they should all work in the adventure world too. But how many times have you come across situations in which the game refuses to allow you to solve a puzzle in an absolutely logical manner?

That is - and here's the point of my post - simply bad puzzle design. Inevitably, that means bad game design.

So yes - interminable mazes should be done away with. Being asked to solve a sliding tile puzzle in order to get through a door to escape from the raging Bugblatter Beast is plain stupid - and breaks the flow of the game horrendously. Silly and illogical inventory puzzles should never exist - but good, logical ones (with multiple solutions?) are the backbone of adventure games.

Logged

Sommnia

  • Lurker
  • *
  • Karma: 0
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 20
  • www.StephanieFaith.net
    • View Profile
    • Stephanie Faith
Re: Most ridiculous inventory puzzles EVER!!!!
« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2010, 12:09:50 AM »

In my opinion, inventory puzzles are a massive plague on the commercial adventure industry....They are annoying.....One example is in the game "Secret Files: Tunguska" You are trying to eavesdrop on a guy in his house. To do this, you must put an old slice of pizza in a cat's food bowl on the porch so the cat comes to eat. Then, you must tape your cellphone to the cat's back and put it on record mode. Then add salt to the cat's food so he goes inside for a drink, and records the man's conversation. But when the cat back out, he climbs a tree. To get him down, you have to go to a payphone and call your cellphone, and the ringing startles the cat and he jumps down from the tree. You take your cellphone back and your done! (except for the fact that the rest of the game is formed of puzzles like this. God help you.) 

So, the pussycat likes pizza, what's wrong with that?  ::)

Logged
 

Page created in 0.172 seconds with 24 queries.