Casual modes should be more casual
This week I’ve been tinkering with a preview build of Thimbleweed Park which is the point and click murder mystery from Ron Gilbert and Gary Winnick (them off Maniac Mansion). I used to love playing point and click games when I was little – my siblings and I would play them together over weeks and weeks – but for me they feel so rooted in that time’s technology and gamescape that I don’t think I’ve found any of the modern revamps/revisits/reworks/riffs of interest. Thimbleweed Park’s recent trailers did trigger a little frisson of curiosity though, and I’ve also been tasked with booting up The Dig by John for a new Game Swap. The result of all of this was an unexpected 2am conclusion about what point and clicks can learn from hidden object adventures. Read the rest of this entry »
More than a throwback
Yesterday, I spent forty five minutes with influential adventure game designer of yore Ron Gilbert. We played a portion of his point and click revival Thimbleweed Park and discussed adventure game design in depth. Many of my questions were inspired by Gilbert’s 1989 statement of intent, Why Adventure Games Suck. As Thimbleweed Park looks back to that time, it seemed appropriate to ask what has changed for the better. And for the worse.
A clown is scrubbing and clawing at his face, attempting to remove the pasty makeup and honking red nose that are the tools of his trade. He can’t. The clowning is no longer a costume, it has become his reality. Long live the new flesh.
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