I was bored this weekend. As a tribute to Tim Schafer releasing the original puzzle/design document for the film noir game, Grim Fandango, I did some sketches of my own. These were based off ripped off some of the concept artwork by Peter Chan in the released document.
The document is an amazing 72 page treat, and includes many puzzles and sub-plots that did not make it into the final game. Possibly my favourite part, apart from the artwork, is the comment on the final page.
To protect this document, please restrict your fallen tears of joy to this box. Thank you!
If you haven’t played Grim Fandango, you’ve missed out of one of the finest and last great adventure games ever released, and not only that – an excellent film-noir story. It was one of the few games that were produced in what I think was the unfortunate end of the adventure gaming era. It is a title that a lot of people missed, even if you were looking for it on the shelves of Electronics Boutique at the time. It is also one of only a hand-full of games that I have felt genuinely moved by, and it is shocking that a story like this could be ignored, forgotten or lost.
The file was released as part of Grim Fandango’s 10th anniversary. If you would like to know more about Grim Fandango, see the escapist’s fantastic article, written this year. N. Evan Van Zelfden of the Escapist has been quoted, in what I think summarises the difficulty marketing the game, as saying:
No other game has come close to its perfection. Once, I told a videogame magazine editor I considered Grim Fandango the finest game ever made. “Yes,” she replied, “But I enjoyed playing Half-Life more.”
I’ll leave you with a quote from Mr Schafer that explains why the final puzzle piece is not revealed in the document.
“We didn’t have the last puzzle designed when I wrote that document, so I wrote two nonsense paragraphs and then overlapped them in the file so it would look like the final puzzle description was in there, but obscured by a print formatting error. That way I could turn the document in by the deadline. As if anybody was going to read it all the way to the end anyway. Ha ha. Obfuscation triumphs again! I delight in Evil!”
In my freshers year at University I lived with several final year students, I remember them appearing to be much wiser and more mature than us freshers. I recall asking questions and expecting them to know everything.
It’s now less than three weeks before I’ll be returning to Guildford for my final year and it feels like nothing has changed. The time has passed so quickly.
I’m feeling chipper though because of my recent purchase of an EeePC 1000H. As soon as ebuyer had them in stock I tried to buy one, however they kept closing my order however much I wanted to give them my money. I ended up buying from the-link instead.
I’m so impressed by the build quality and the size of the keyboard on the Eee. The unit’s footprint is a tad smaller than an A4 piece of paper, the screen is very clear and can be incredibly bright even from the most obtuse viewing angles. I am most pleased by the battery life. As an advocate of the fact that laptops, netbooks, notebooks and the like should do what they are designed to do, be mobile. 2 hour battery life from the regular budget laptop is far from useful on the go. I have managed to ween 5.5 hours with regular use, WIFI on and bluetooth off on my eee. This is good enough for a day of lectures.
I realise that it’s specifications aren’t going to win any performance awards, but it’s a netbook. It’s not designed to play the newest directx10 games or edit high-definition video, and that is reflected in its low price.
I’ll end with a query. If you run a surgery and are usually late or slow with your work, is it better to have or not to have a clock in your waiting room?