Watching Thimbleweed Park "let's play"s is painful

Because it’s quicker and it saves time, which for some players might be the main, unconscious goal.

I see. So it seems that for this player searching was not part of the fun. (even if it was goal-driven search). He did not take pleasure at analyzing the scene and look for the object that might help him achieve the objective he had. (finding a hidden safe?)

Can we infer that this player does not take pleasure in exploration in general?

Edit: it could be that, for some people, identifying objects is a boring task, only reasoning on (given) objects is an interesting task? If so, the TAB button definitely has a purpose, as katox noticed.

Just to add my 2 cents: I think there is a general problem. The traits problem solving, attention to detail and so on are prob bell curve shaped distributed. Also you only need to miss (the clue to )a puzzle once to get totally stuck. So if you make a challenging game, the difficulty level is so high that more than 90% of all players have to use a walkthrough at least once or give up. Hands up who finished the game without any help.

What was different with theclassics (like mm): there was the ‘sharing’ culture, which lead to that you knew other ppl playing the same game at the same time. Even a ‘keep trying, you will figure it out’ or just knowing friends can do it gave you persistance (and walkthroughs were hard to come by). I mean it took me 2 weeks to find out how to solve the peg leg puzzle in MI.

:raising_hand_man:

I did too, but I brute-forced the hotel rooms.

Monkey 2 was twice as hard as TWP, this must be said. Personally I liked that MI2 sensation of being totally lost and everything is a total mystery. But it would probably not work today.

Well, in my opinion this community is not necessarily representative of how users behave, but I think that among us you can count several people who didn’t use any help. We discussed the topic in this thread:

I would add another difference with the classics: in the past the player needed to be more careful when inspecting a scene, because some adventure games were known to artificially increase the difficulty of the game by requiring pixel hunting sessions. With modern adventure games I can assume that it’s unlikely that the developer used tiny hotspots, so I inspect the scene in a more relaxed and less detailed way.

When did you first play MI2? How old were you? I’ve watched a couple of people play MI2 for the first time, and they completed it in around 8 hours, which is well with in the ballpark for people completing TWP.

You’re right, I was 15, so I can’t compare it with playing TWP. OTOH I can’t imagine that today I would be able to solve the puzzles “wanted poster + leaflet” or “pick up dog” or “use banana with metronome” or “saw the peg leg” or “play the horn in the contest location” or “hang the parrot face on the hook”, or the famous monkey wrench. I think these are fantastic puzzles, (almost all of them), only I wouldn’t be able to solve them. Probably.

8 hours to finish monkey2 seems to me unbelievable. Who were they, Stephen Hawking and John Von Neumann?

You should try Paradigm, just to see how the adult you will cope with surreal and nonsense adventure games.

To be honest I wasn’t interested because that graphic style is for me hard to swallow, but if you tell me the puzzles are good, I certainly will. (or are they just surreal? :)).

I can’t endorse the whole game or its puzzles yet, because I have only played a demo of the game. My suggestion was only the result of my curiosity making me wonder how you would handle some puzzles that are not strictly logical but that make sense only if you accept the twisted and absurd world in which the protagonist lives. :slight_smile:

I’m sure that I’ll love the game as much as I loved its demo, but I suggest to you to read a few reviews to understand if it’s your cup of tea.

1 Like

Spuds, you could browse over a playthrough. The first five minutes are nice.

Sometimes the game is hilarious. Somehow the real fun is more coming from the surroundings. In the center of the action it’s not always this funny. The interface is okayish. I experienced more references than great puzzles. There are a few very nice highres graphics in the game but overall it lacks a convincing coherent style. The game is demanding, like The Darkside Detective.

It’s a nice and different but not a great adventure yet. It reminds me of a young talented comedian, who needs some more time, Currently only 30% of his jokes are good but those sound promising.

I have played a bit and I have seen five locations. But I only solved one puzzle (having the dog move so I can pickup the cone). The problem is I am finding everything terribly uninteresting. I am not sure I want to buy this (unless someone here guarantees the puzzles are good :slight_smile: ), and I don’t feel ok playing more without buying. The humour sometimes works, I have made a couple of laughs, but most of the time I find myself skipping dialogue. The setting is intentionally squallid. I am finding it unpleasant, and I wonder what kind of target audience the game has, i.e. who might like a game with that setting. People nostalgic of the Soviet Union, maybe?

It doesn’t seem that you are enjoying the game and if I were you I wouldn’t buy it.

Probably people who like surreal or absurdist worlds and stories. I’m one of them.

I don´t get this thing about quality of puzzles. Isn´t that like the most subjective thing ever?

Also I think the fact that everyone is having a different experience with the game is a sign of it´s quality. People find solutions their way, people have different problems with different puzzles because people are different. If the game was that simple everyone would get through it with the same approach it would be a boring streamlined no brainer of a game.

Minds work differently, and the way we exchange our experiences here is really interesting, but there is no objective “truth” to any of this, forget it.

Actually I think its a real problem. What should a player do if he missed a reference to a solution of a puzzle in a game like twp? The reference is not repeating. So then what else then trying everything on everything is left? Starting the game over? (I am excluding walkthroughs here).
Maybe some method to rewatch the past?

I have observed that in some adventure games a reference or hint given by a NPC in a dialogue doesn’t disappear but is left there so that the player can read it again. So I think that the designer has a way to minimize the problem.

If the game includes a hint system, like Thimbleweed Park, the player can use it. Some of the hints could help the player remembering the references that he/she saw.

That would be another useful feature. In this thread people were discussing about a rewind feature and dialogue logs.

Keeping only the important dialog options is a huge hint/spoiler system. I wouldnt feel comfortable with that. Thats like an automated call to the hint line.

A “perfect” game would recognize that the player needs help and give the necessary - but not too much - hints. But to implement such a help system would be a lot of work.

I can’t pinpoint a specific example but I remember that several Lucas adventure games have used this technique in the past and, yes, it might be perceived as a spoiler if the only option kept is an important piece of information.

Maybe keeping both the important option and a few unnecessary ones might be a simple and viable solution. Actually, I think that some games did exactly this.