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Remembering Captain McGrandpa
by Frank Cifaldi on 10/05/12 02:07:00 pm   Expert Blogs   Featured Blogs

The following blog post, unless otherwise noted, was written by a member of Gamasutra’s community.
The thoughts and opinions expressed are those of the writer and not Gamasutra or its parent company.

 

Back in 2008, I worked for Turner Broadcasting on a subscription-based games-on-demand service called GameTap. It was kind of like Netflix, but instead of a random assortment of movies, you had about 1,000 games to play. It's still around, sort of, though under new ownership.

I could probably fill a (really, really boring) book with all of the weird and upsetting things that happened while I was there, but today I just wanted to spotlight -- and preserve -- my magnum opus, Captain McGrandpa.

Captain McGrandpa was a sort of April Fools gag that spiralled out of control. In the weeks leading up to April 1, we put a mysterious entry into the Coming Soon section of our game launcher called "Captain McGrandpa: Memory of the Forgotten," which promised to be "the first truly multiplayer adventure game." I wrote it as a joke, but it kind of pissed off the fans of a Myst MMO that we had just announced we were pulling the plug on. Oops.

We actually launched an executable game launcher on April 1. If GameTap players downloaded it, launched it, and clicked the play button, they'd be automatically redirected to this forums thread, where players would see...an old-fashioned text adventure prompt.

I spent the entirety of my work day on April 1, 2008 playing "Grandpa Master" for a forums-based text adventure about an old man trying to remember what he had planned to do with his day. It was a blast. I even wrote a postmortem, Game Developer magazine-style.

While the original forums thread is still the best way to re-live Captain McGrandpa, it's probably not going to be around forever (and it's already kinda broken now that it's been exported to some new forums software, or something). What follows is all of the actual game part, lovingly copy-pasted by me during a particularly busy work day when I should be editing some actual Gamasutra articles.

What you're missing is a lot of the discussion amongst my players, which is almost as fun as the "game" itself. But otherwise, this is an accurate playthrough of the events of the day. Please enjoy, Ulysses McGrandpa would have wanted it that way (assuming he's dead, which he probably is by now).

Score: 0 Moves: 0McGrandpa's Room

 
Captain McGrandpa - Memory of the Forgotten
Copyright (c) 2008 Turner Broadcasting, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.

The sun shines dimly through the Venetian blinds in room 24B of the Idle Springs Retirement Home, where Captain McGrandpa spends the majority of what has become his day-to-day life. The good Captain stoops over on the foot of his bed, trying in vain to remember exactly what it was he was meant to do today. Can you help him?

McGrandpa's Room
  Fifty years of hard labor and life experience have all amounted to this, a small studio with a private bathroom. It's not as nice as the beautiful home you were forced to leave behind, but on the upside, at least this one comes with a cleaning lady who comes in once a week to change your sheets. Your room is sparsely decorated, with a twin-sized bed, a dresser, a modest closet, and a television mounted to the wall. To the North is the room's exit, to the West is the restroom.

>Look at the bed

It's a simple, Twin-sized bed, the kind you haven't had since you were a child. You notice your wallet sticking out from under a pillow, and add it to your inventory.

>Go check the mail.

It comes as no surprise to learn that you do not have a mailbox in your bedroom.

>check the closet

Your closet contains your entire wardrobe, a framed photograph, and a bag of butterscotch candies.

>look at photograph

It's a photograph of a cow. You don't remember its significance, but you've had it for years, so it must be important.

>take photo and candies

You take the items, quickly realize you have no pockets in which to stuff them, and return them neatly to their original places in the closet. Perhaps something in your wardrobe has pockets.

>Get dressed

Looking closely at your options, you finally decide on a pair of sensible trousers and The Cardigan of Infinite Pockets.

>take photo and candies

Though you have no idea why, something compels you to put the Photograph of Cow in the Cardigan of Infinite Pockets. Ah, Butterscotch Candies, can't leave home without them. You slip a large supply of Butterscotch Candies into the Cardigan of Infinite Pockets.

>leave room

There are two exits, be specific.

>Goto bathroom.

It's a small bathroom. Unlike Charlie next door, you don't have hand rails on the tub, because they make you feel old. The bathroom contains its usual fixtures, most interesting among them a medicine cabinet.

>look in medicine cabinet 

Today's a big day, better make sure you're adequately prepared. You rummage through the medicine cabinet and find Bandages, your Daily Pill Counter, a Matchbook, and a Funny Squeaky Toy. You stuff them all in your pockets. 

>leave room 

McGrandpa's Room   Fifty years of hard labor and life experience have all amounted to this, a small studio with a private bathroom. It's not as nice as the beautiful home you were forced to leave behind, but on the upside, at least this one comes with a cleaning lady who comes in once a week to change your sheets. Your room is sparsely decorated, with a twin-sized bed, a dresser, a modest closet, and a television mounted to the wall. To the North is the room's exit, to the West is the restroom. 

>Squeeze the squeaky toy 

You squeeze the Funny Squeaky Toy. It squeals in delight, and so do you.

>n 

You start to exit out in to the hallway when your phone suddenly rings. Why would your phone ring? Maybe today is your birthday? Yes, that must be it. It must be your grandson calling to wish you a happy birthday. 

>answer phone 

Excitedly, you sprint to the phone and pick it up. The man on the other end is not your grandson. In fact, you don't recognize him at all. He's asking you something about groceries, but he's talking too loud and too fast and you don't understand. You hang up. 

Maybe it's not your birthday after all. Now you're more confused than ever. Try as you might, you just can not remember what you were supposed to do today, but you're sure it was important. 

>n 

2nd Story Hallway
   The 2nd Story Hallway contains many doors, among them the entrance to McGrandpa's Room. You are not interested in the other doors. Also in the hallway are an Elevator and a Shifty Looking Guy You Don't Want To Talk To. 

>i 

You are carrying: 

The Charleston 
Wallet 
Cardigan of Infinite Pockets 
Charles Foster Cane 
Photograph of Cow 
Butterscotch Candies 
Daily Pill Counter 
Bandages 
Matchbook 
Funny Squeaky Toy 

>use the charleston on shifty looking guy 

You've still got it, old man. You bend your knees, throw your Cane to the side, and dance The Charleston just as well as you did when you were a teen. The Shifty Looking Guy You Don't Want To Talk To is at first confused, and then inspired, and begins dancing with you. 

A furious dance-off occurs, but in the end, you are victorious. The Shifty Looking Guy You Don't Want To Talk To walks away, sullenly, going into one of the hallway's doors and locking it behind him. 

>flex in triumph 

You clench your fists tightly and raise your arms in a manly flex, only to find gross liver-spotted flesh drooping off of your arms where muscles used to be. You put your hands into a couple of your infinite pockets in shame, hoping no one noticed. 

>Follow the Shady Man 

You walk over to the door the Shifty Looking Guy You Don't Want To Talk To retreated to, intending to...well, you have no idea what your intentions are. You stare at his door, confused. You don't even remember why you came over in the first place anymore. You're tired. Your back is sore. Also the food here is lousy, and you wish your family would visit more. 

>Enter elevator 

You enter the elevator and go down to the lobby. You still have no idea what you're supposed to be doing today, maybe something down here will jog your memory. 

Idle Springs Lobby 
  The lobby for the Idle Springs Retirement Home is the central hub for all senior activities. Behind a desk The Mean Lady You Don't Like smiles and wishes you a good morning. To the East is the Recreation Room, to the West is the Library and Cafe, and to the South is The Outside World.

>talk to lady 

You grunt at The Mean Lady You Don't Like. Her smile broadens, and she compliments your choice of wardrobe today, saying that you look sharp.

>Go Outside 

As you make your way toward The Outside World, The Mean Lady You Don't Like waves and wishes you a pleasant day. 

The Outside World 
  It's cold and frightening out here and you don't like it. To the East is A Place You Don't Want To Go, to the West is A Place You Don't Want To Go, and to the North is The Idle Springs Retirement Home. There is a Taxi Cab parked haphazardly on the curb. 

>Hotwire the taxi cab 

You open the passenger-side door, climb into the cab, and look around the dashboard for a way to make it start. The cab driver, sitting next to you, advises you that all passengers must sit in the back seat. 

>Check Wallet 

You feverishly check several pockets on the Cardigan of Infinite Pockets in an attempt to find your wallet. After several minutes you procure it and check its contents. Inside the wallet you find: 

Photo ID 
Cash Moneys 
Coffee Coupon 
Lodge Membership Card 

The cab driver, still sitting next to you, eyes you suspiciously.

>exit cab 

You exit the cab and step outside. 

The Outside World 
  It's cold and frightening out here and you don't like it. To the East is A Place You Don't Want To Go, to the West is A Place You Don't Want To Go, and to the North is The Idle Springs Retirement Home. There is a Taxi Cab parked haphazardly on the curb. 

>Count cash moneys 

You attempt to count your Cash Moneys, but you were never very good at math. You decide on a slim, even figure of "enough" and put it back in your wallet. 

>examine coffee coupon 

The coupon is good for thirty cents off a can of Fixture's Coffee, regular or decaf. The fine print also reveals that it has a cash value of 1/100th of a cent. Choose wisely. 

>Check ID 

Your ID reveals your full birth name, Captain Ulysses McGrandpa. The address listed is the Idle Springs Retirement Home. It also says that you are an organ donor.

>go inside 

Idle Springs Lobby 
  The lobby for the Idle Springs Retirement Home is the central hub for all senior activities. Behind a desk The Mean Lady You Don't Like smiles and wishes you a good morning. To the East is the Recreation Room, to the West is the Library and Cafe, and to the South is The Outside World.

The Mean Lady You Don't Like smiles pleasantly and welcomes you back. 

>Give squeaky toy to woman 

The Mean Lady You Don't Like gasps ecstatically. She squeezes the Funny Squeaky Toy, and it squeals in delight. So do you. So does The Mean Lady You Don't Like. 

She hands the Funny Squeaky Toy back to you, and thanks you genuinely for perking up her day. 

>talk to lady 

The Mean Lady You Don't Like asks you how your day is going, and if you have any big plans. 

>check pill counter 

The Daily Pill Counter contains your daily medications, a cornucopia of delightfully bright and vibrant colors. You notice that today's slot is still full. 

The Mean Lady You Don't Like, noticing what you're doing, hands you a bottle of water from her purse. "Don't worry, I have two!" she says, pleasantly.

>give cardigan to lady 

In the spirit of altruism, and perhaps because you didn't take today's medications, you hand the Cardigan of Infinite Pockets - with all of your inventory inside - to The Mean Lady You Don't Like, insisting that she keep it. Using your inventory to solve clever puzzles, The Mean Lady You Don't Like goes on a grand adventure that includes a hot air balloon race around the world, being elected mayor, and opening the gateway to infinite parallel dimensions, each more delightful than the last. 

You spend the rest of your days wishing you would have kept that inventory for yourself. Also, you never did figure out what you were supposed to do that day. 

GAME OVER 

Retry?

>y 

The Daily Pill Counter contains your daily medications, a cornucopia of delightfully bright and vibrant colors. You notice that today's slot is still full. 

The Mean Lady You Don't Like, noticing what you're doing, hands you a bottle of water from her purse. "Don't worry, I have two!" she says, pleasantly. 

>Take pills 

You grunt and snatch the bottle of water. The Mean Lady You Don't Like gently takes your Daily Pill Planner, puts today's meds in a small paper cup, and hands it back to you with a smile. 

You down today's pills methodically, one at a time. The Mean Lady You Don't Like shows no sign of impatience, watching intently to make sure there are no accidents. Finally you finish. The ache in your back subsides a bit, and some of the cobwebs in your head clear, but you still don't know what you're supposed to be doing today. 

>Examine Lodge Membership Card 

Your lodge membership card is dog-eared on all sides and taped together several times over. It reads: 

HUSKY MOOSE LODGE ASSOCIATION 
EST. 1928 
MEMBER NO. 32 

The address is listed on the back. It's been a long time since the last lodge meeting, you wonder idly how the old boys are doing. 

>go to rec room 

Idle Springs Rec Room 
  The Idle Springs Rec Room is the place where Idle Spring's active seniors come to live active senior lives, actively. The room contains a Television, a Shelf, a Strange Contraption, and some other things. You are not particularly interested in any of it. To the West is the Idle Springs Lobby. 

Two fellow Idle Springs residents are sitting at a table playing chess. They ignore you as you walk in. 

>look at Strange Contraption 

It's big and it has a lot of metal. You don't like it, and you want nothing to do with it. 

>Check the Shelf 

The Rec Room's Shelf contains a large assortment of books, graciously donated by the local education community. There was one in particular you really enjoyed, what was the title again?  

>Hey guys, does this help? 

No, that wasn't it, Hey Guys, Does This Help? was a really lousy novel. Gosh, though, you really enjoyed that other book. What was the name of it again? 

>Check for the book, "Memory of the Forgotten" 

After a brief search you locate a book titled "Memory of the Forgotten." It has a gorgeous leather cover, and its pages are blank. That's kind of weird. This is not the book you were looking for, but you stick it in one of your pockets anyway. 

Really, though, there was a fantastic book on the shelf here somewhere, and you'd love to read it again. Just what was that title? 

>steal contraption 

Yes, Steal Contraption, that was it! What a great spy thriller. Or maybe it was an instructional guide to thievery. Or a history book. You don't really remember what it was about, only that you liked it. You find Steal Contraption on the shelf and stuff it in one of your pockets. 

>examine chess game 

You don't recognize the two men playing chess, which is unsurprising, given that you don't talk to anybody. You stroll over and examine the board. The two men sigh, pack up their game, and leave the room, accidentally leaving behind a Queen on the table. You pocket it. 

>Squeeze the squeaky toy. 

You squeeze the Funny Squeaky Toy. It squeals in delight, and so do you.

>Go to the library 

You start heading toward The Library (the strange name of Idle Springs' cafe), and notice the two chess players in there, looking around as if they lost a small object. You decide it's probably best to stay away. 

>Follow those creepy guys. 

You've grown fond of your Queen piece, and can't imagine life without it. You decide to avoid the chess players entirely for the rest of your life, so that you and your Queen can live together happily. You return to the Lobby. 

Idle Springs Lobby 
  The lobby for the Idle Springs Retirement Home is the central hub for all senior activities. Behind a desk The Mean Lady You Don't Like smiles and wishes you a good morning. To the East is the Recreation Room, to the West is the Library and Cafe, and to the South is The Outside World.

>go outside 

On your way outside, The Mean Lady You Don't Like stops you and reminds you that all books are property of the Idle Springs Retirement Community, and that taking them outside is strictly forbidden. 

She then pauses, and says, "Well, I'll make an exception for you. It will be our little secret." She smiles sweetly and winks. You leave without saying a word. 

The Outside World 
  It's cold and frightening out here and you don't like it. To the East is A Place You Don't Want To Go, to the West is A Place You Don't Want To Go, and to the North is The Idle Springs Retirement Home. There is a Taxi Cab parked haphazardly on the curb. 

>east 

You head East to A Place You Don't Want To Go, remember that you don't want to go there, and turn back. You have lost twenty points for attempting to step outside of your comfort zone and explore the world around you. 

>enter back seat of taxi 

You climb into the back seat of the taxi cab. The driver looks you over, shakes his head disapprovingly, and asks, "Where to, mac?" 

>go to the lodge place that he had a pass thing to 

You hand your Lodge Membership Card to the taxi driver and say "I want go to here." The driver looks the card over delicately, finds the address, and looks stern. "Is this some kind of gag?" he asks. "The address on here is where we are right now." 

That's right, the lodge building closed down in the '

60s, and was replaced by a retirement home. You must have forgotten. 

>go to the coffee shop 

You ask the cab driver to take you to the coffee shop. 

"Which coffee shop?" he asks. 

You grumble something obscene under your breath. The cab driver sighs and drives you to a random coffee shop. 

Mr. Spressy's Gourmet Beans 
  The smell of fresh brew blankets Mr. Spressy's Gourmet Beans. Behind the counter a very young lady smiles and welcomes you. Young people crowd the tables, staring into notebooks and computer screens. You grip your Funny Squeaky Toy nervously. You are out of your element. To the South is the exit, where your taxi cab waits. 

>go back inside to your comfort zone, promising to never leave again 

You decide this is all too much for you, and retreat back to your room to wait out the rest of your days in quiet seclusion, with only your Queen and the television to keep you company. It's not a good life, but it's a life, and it's yours. 

GAME OVER 

Retry?

>Yes 

Mr. Spressy's Gourmet Beans 
  The smell of fresh brew blankets Mr. Spressy's Gourmet Beans. Behind the counter a very young lady smiles and welcomes you. Young people crowd the tables, staring into notebooks and computer screens. You grip your Funny Squeaky Toy nervously. You are out of your element. To the South is the exit, where your taxi cab waits. 

>Show the young lady the cow photo 

You pull the Photograph of Cow out of one of your pockets and display it proudly in front of the young lady. She stares, blankly, before feigning a smile and saying, "Wow, that's beautiful!" You smile back. You appreciate anyone who shares your passion for cows. 

>Tell lady stories about cows 

You pull into the deepest recess of your mind for the best cow story you have, something that will really impress this young lady. Ah, there it is. 

"I saw a cow on the television once," you say, beaming. 

She smiles nervously and says, "I see!" 

>Show the lady the "Memory of the Forgotten" book 

You stuff the Photograph of Cow back into a random pocket, and pull out Memory of the Forgotten. You flip through its blank, mysterious pages, close the book tight, and hand it over to the young lady. 

She opens it and goes to a random page. Her bemused expression becomes serious. "How did..." she manages to choke out, breathlessly, before reading further, her eyes becoming more intense as she goes. "I see," she whispers below her breath, looking intensely inspired, a solitary tear rolling down her cheek. 

She hands the book back to you. "Thank you, sir," she says. "This really cleared me up a lot, and helped put things into perspective. I'm a new woman, starting right now I'm going to live my life." She takes off her employee robe, tosses it aside, and walks out the door. Puzzled, you open the book back up and flip through its pages. 

They're completely blank. 

>Examine 'steal contraption' 

You examine Steal Contraption. The book is just as good as you remembered. You particularly enjoy the chapter on the rising cost of the steel industry. 

YOU FEEL THE FAMILIAR TINGE OF A MEMORY 

Something about this chapter seems familiar, it could be a clue to your goal for today. Memory of the Forgotten radiates warmly in your pocket. You open it to the first page. A single word, "Cost," is etched into it.

>Concentrate on cost 

You think hard on the word "cost." The concentration makes you feel tired. Actually, you were already pretty tired. 

>Eat the butterscotch candies 

You pop a butterscotch candy into your mouth and suck on it, contemplatively. 

You notice that all of the coffee shop's patrons are staring at you intently. 

>Squeeze the squeaky toy! 

You squeeze the Funny Squeaky Toy. It squeals in delight, and so do you. And so does every patron in the shop. It is a very happy scene. 

>Get up and head for the bathroom 

The coffee shop's customers smile at you appreciatively as you make your way to the restroom, which is both locked and occupied. Oh well, you didn't really need to go anyway. 

>get coffee 

You press random buttons on strange machines behind the counter in an attempt to get a cup of coffee, and make a horrible mess. There is coffee and syrup and milk everywhere. This is nothing like the simple coffee pot at Idle Springs. 

>Dance on the coffee counter 

You attempt to climb on to the counter, unsuccessfully. A patron, noticing you, comes over and gives you a helpful lift. 

Standing on the counter, looking at your audience, you get ready to put on the show of your life. 

YOU FEEL THE FAMILIAR TINGE OF A MEMORY 

Seeing the audience before you feels familiar, somehow. This could be a clue! Memory of the Forgotten radiates warmly in your pocket. You open it to the first page. Underneath the word "cost," it says "show." 

You throw Charles Foster Cane to the side, bend your knees, and dance The Charleston on the counter. The coffee shop's patrons whoop and holler. Some bow down before you. One stuffs a dollar bill into your pants. The kids have never seen a show like this before. 

You receive a standing ovation. 

>South 

You step down off the counter, wrestling away Charles Foster Cane from a fan looking to take home a souvenir. You rush South and hop into the cab, a swarm of hipsters mobbing the car and screaming joyously. 

"Whoa, buddy, what's this?" the cab driver asks. A fan jumps on the hood and screams "We love you!" The driver shakes his head. "Can't go nowhere with this screaming mob, buddy." 

>Pass out butterscotches 

You reach into your pocket, grab a handful of butterscotches, and toss them out of a window at the first opportunity. The mob of fans lets out a harmonious, high-pitched scream, diving at once for the candy. 

The driver peels out, driving you safely away. "That was weird," he says. "Anyway, where we going?"

>Home, James! 

You ask the cab driver to take you home. He looks at you sternly and says, "No." 

>To the grocery 

Mega Pigout Food Co. 
  The grocery store is quiet today, just the way you like it. You are surrounded by several winding aisles. A Tired Looking Woman controls the one active check-out stand, and a Friendly Manager greets you on your way in, letting you know that he's here to help. He hands you a sales sheet, mentioning something about a special on corn flakes. 

>west 

You head West, with no real destination in mind. The many aisles confuse and frighten you. After a long journey you somehow end up back at the entrance. 

Mega Pigout Food Co. 
  The grocery store is quiet today, just the way you like it. You are surrounded by several winding aisles. A Tired Looking Woman controls the one active check-out stand, and a Friendly Manager greets you. 

>Examine every item in inventory 

You are carrying: 

The Charleston 
Wallet 
Cardigan of Infinite Pockets 
Charles Foster Cane 
Photograph of Cow 
Butterscotch Candies 
Daily Pill Counter 
Bandages 
Matchbook 
Funny Squeaky Toy 
Photo ID 
Cash Moneys 
Coffee Coupon 
Lodge Membership Card 
Empty Water Bottle 
Memory of the Forgotten 
Steal Contraption 
Queen 
Mega Pigout Sales Sheet 

>Show the Cashier the book 

You have two books, three if you count the sales sheet. Be more specific. 

>Use the memory of the forgotten book on the cashier 

You hand Memory of the Forgotten to the Tired Looking Woman behind the checkout stand. She flips it open, reads, and scratches her head. "According to this," she says, "I'm supposed to tell you where the coffee's at. Um, aisle six, right behind you." 

YOU FEEL THE FAMILIAR TINGE OF A MEMORY 

Something the Tired Looking Woman just said jogs something deep inside of you. Memory of the Forgotten radiates and glows in the Tired Looking Woman's hand, causing her to scream and drop it on the floor. You retrieve it, open it to the first page, and read the text that it contains. 

cost 
show 


>Get the can of coffee shown on the coupon. 

You make your way to aisle six and locate Fixture's Coffee. It comes in both regular and decaf varieties. CHOOSE WISELY. 

>Buy Regular Fixture's Coffee 

After a brief internal debate, you decide to grab the regular variety of Fixture's Coffee. The Tired Looking Woman scans your coffee. "That will be $4.99," she says, emotionless. 

>Pay cashier 

You pay the full amount, ignoring the coupon in your pocket. 

For being a haphazard consumer, you lose 1,000 points. 

>sing to lady 

"Way down upon de Swanee ribber, 
Far, far away, 
Dere's wha my heart is turning ebber, 
Dere's wha de old folks staaaaaaay." 

The Tired Looking Woman yawns. 

>Bite fingernails 

You bite your fingernails. 

The Tired Looking Woman checks her watch.

>Show the cashier the picture of the cow 

You pull the Photograph of Cow out of your pocket and show it to the cashier, pointing at it and nodding enthusiastically. 

"Beef?" she asks. "Produce, aisle 2."

>Ask why beef is in the produce section instead of the meat department. 

You ask the Tired Looking Woman why beef, which is typically a meat, is in the produce section of Mega Pigout. 

The Tired Looking Woman shrugs and points at the Friendly Manager. 

>go outside 

You exit Mega Pigout and head back into the cab. The cab driver nods. "Where now, brown cow?" 
 

>go outside 

You exit Mega Pigout and head back into the cab. The cab driver nods. "Where now, brown cow?"

>Go inside 

You're already in the cab. 

"Come on mac, I ain't got all day," the driver says. 

>Go back inside and get the decaf coffee, use the coupon to pay! 

No. 

>Then back to the retirement home? 

The driver peels away, taking you back to Idle Springs. 

"Hey, you mind if we listen to the game?" he asks, turning up the radio before you have a chance to respond. 

YOU FEEL THE FAMILIAR TINGE OF A MEMORY 

Game. The concept of a game resonates inside of you. You know that what you had to do today involved a game. 

Memory of the Forgotten burns hotter than ever in your pocket. You open it up to the first page and, sure enough, "game" is written there. The full contents of Memory of the Forgotten are: 

cost 
show 

game 

Idle Springs Lobby 
  The lobby for the Idle Springs Retirement Home is the central hub for all senior activities. Behind a desk The Mean Lady You Don't Like smiles and welcomes you back home. To the East is the Recreation Room, to the West is the Library and Cafe, and to the South is The Outside World. 

>Save 

The Save option has been disabled. 

>examine Charles Foster Cane 

With its sturdy oak finish, brass handle and rubberized grip, Charles Foster is truly the leader in the mobility assistance industry. 

>Show the cow picture to the cab driver 

You don't see any cab drivers. 

>Go to the elevator 

The Mean Lady You Don't Like stops you on your way to the elevator. 

"I saw something on the television about a riot at Mr. Spressy's. Do you believe that? These kids are getting worse every day." 

YOU FEEL THE FAMILIAR TINGE OF A MEMORY 

Television. Yes, that's right. What you wanted to do today involved a television. Memory of the Forgotten briefly catches fire in your pocket and fizzles out, leaving nothing damaged. You open it to the first page, and see the following written: 

cost 
show 

game 
television 

>Watch Wheel of Fortune on TV 

You don't see a TV. 

Show the Memory of the Forgotten to the mean lady 

You hand Memory of the Forgotten to The Mean Lady You Don't Like. "Wow, this is beautiful!" she says. "You have wonderful taste." She opens the book to a random page and reads, her smile never fading. 

"I know this is weird," she says, "but I feel compelled to tell you to go up to your room." She hands the book back, winking cheerfully.

>Goto elevator 

You take the elevator up to the second floor. 

2nd Story Hallway 
  The 2nd Story Hallway contains many doors, among them the entrance to McGrandpa's Room. You are not interested in the other doors. Also in the hallway is an Elevator leading down to the Lobby. 

>Enter my room 

McGrandpa's Room 
  Fifty years of hard labor and life experience have all amounted to this, a small studio with a private bathroom. It's not as nice as the beautiful home you were forced to leave behind, but on the upside, at least this one comes with a cleaning lady who comes in once a week to change your sheets. Your room is sparsely decorated, with a twin-sized bed, a dresser, a modest closet, and a television mounted to the wall. To the North is the room's exit, to the West is the restroom. 

>Turn on the television. 

You flip on the television. It takes a minute to warm up. The picture illuminates into focus. A white-haired host holding an awkwardly long and thin microphone announces that it's time to play "How Much Is This Thing?" 

YOU FEEL A TREMENDOUS THUMP IN YOUR BRAIN 

Memory of the Forgotten elevates itself out of your pocket, hovers mid-air, and explodes into a fantastic light show. That's it! That is what you wanted to do! You wanted to watch your favorite game show, "How Much Is This Thing," at 6:00. Looks like you made it just in time. 

"It's time for my favorite segment of the show," the announcer says. "We've randomly selected a dedicated 'How Much Is This Thing?' viewer to get a phone call and participate live on the show." 

Your phone rings. Can it be? 

>Pick up that phone! 

You pick up the phone, hand trembling. 

"Is this Captain Ulysses McGrandpa?" the familiar voice on the other end asks. 

"Captain, you are participating live on tonight's showing of 'How Much Is This Thing?'! If you can solve today's Price Buster, you will win our grand prize! Are you ready?" 

"Captain, today's Price Buster item is one can of Fixture's brand coffee. This is regular, not decaf. Captain McGrandpa, HOW MUCH IS THIS THING?" 

>answer 4.99 

You think back to the can of coffee you stupidly paid full price for. It's time for retribution. "The answer is $4.99," you say. 

"THAT IS CORRECT! Captain McGrandpa, you are the winner of today's Price Buster challenge! In addition to 1,000 points added to your score, you have won a lifetime supply of Butterscotch Candy! Congratulations, Captain McGrandpa!" 

YOU'VE WON THE GAME! 

Thanks to all of you, Captain McGrandpa was able to make it home on time to not only watch his favorite television program, but to win a whole lot of his favorite product. He will spend the rest of his days enjoying sweet, buttery victory. 

You have scored 1,780 points in 88 moves, giving you the rank of Senile Superstar. 

THE END


>_

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Comments


Muir Freeland
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"Idle Springs" is such a good name for a retirement home.

Steve Fulton
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I love this! I would actually play this game if it existed. Very cool.


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