Wasn’t in the mood today. I went to the next puzzle level after the one with the bully. There was a flower. It needed to grow. So, that level took about five seconds, then. Then there was one with a girl on a diving board and nothing I tried worked until I fluked it by accident. And then there’s one with a pirate and crocodile and some spurious chests and it was just fiddly and awkward and I couldn’t be bothered at all.
So, I tried a few more times.
Following a suggestion from another person, I tried just creating a CHOCOLATE BAR. The girl ate it happily, but I didn’t get the starite.
Then I tried creating a VENDING MACHINE, which dispensed a chocolate bar, but it wasn’t good enough, either.
I summoned a BULLY, hoping the two bullies would be evenly matched and I could run past and get a chocolate bar in time, but the one I created killed the existing one and I failed the level.
Finally, I created a WALL and put it on the level between the bully and the girl. Then I created a NERD. The bully ran over to kill him, at which point I created another WALL, trapping the bully. Now there were two WALLs between me and the vending machines, with a bully in the middle. I created some WINGS, flew over to the vending machine, got the chocolate bar, flew back, gave it to the girl and – hooray! – success! I used four objects and the par for that level is three, which means I got less money for completing it, but I’m really not worrying about that at the moment.
Funnily enough, the last two posts have been about Scribblenauts at its best, as far as I’m concerned. Unlike the action levels, puzzle levels like these usually have goals to achieve to make the starite appear and are a bit more restrictive in their rules. It’s a shame it doesn’t tell you the bully has to survive in the description of the level, but it doesn’t take long to figure that out.
I’m stuck on a level. There’s a row of vending machines guarded by a bully. I need to go and get a chocolate bar from a vending machine and bring it back to a girl. I’ve tried quite a few things so far. Some examples:
First up, summon GOD to kill the bully. That fails the level. Obviously killing the bully isn’t allowed. Hmm.
Put a BLINDFOLD on the bully. He seems to see me anyway and kills me.
Give myself an INVISIBILITY CLOAK, same thing.
Put RESTRAINTS on the bully, no effect.
Summon GALLOWS to scare the bully into repenting his life of crime. Unsurprisingly, it doesn’t work.
Make a PIT for the bully to fall into, but there’s nowhere on the level to put it.
Attach a ROPE to the bully and then to PEGASUS. Try to fly the PEGASUS away, but there’s nowhere safe to drop the bully.
Use a SHRINK RAY on the bully and put a TABLE over him. He can run out from under the table and even a tiny bully can kill me.
Use the SHRINK RAY to shrink the bully, then GLUE him to a BOULDER. He runs around with the BOULDER attached and kills me.
GLUE the bully to a CAT. Summon a MOUSE, hoping the cat will drag the bully off. No luck.
Summon a MOM to shame the bully into being good, but instead he just kills her and then comes after me.
Use a FREEZE RAY on the bully. Before I can get over the big block of ice he’s been trapped in he breaks out and kills me.
Summon a NERD to distract the bully. Works quite well, but the bully kills the NERD very easily, then kills the girl I’m trying to get chocolate for.
Summon another NERD, but this time give the NERD a KNIFE, hoping to even things up. NERD now kills bully and the level is failed.
More experimentation needed.
Didn’t get to play much last night because I went out with the wife to see Dorian Gray at the cinema. (Pretty good, actually.)
Played a bit of Scribblenauts, though, in a small session which showed off the best and worst of the game.
Worst: Several times I somehow managed to glitch through scenery and get stuck in the level.
Best: A problem couldn’t be solved by any of my standard tools, so I had to think up a new solution and when I made something that worked I felt like a genius.
As I keep saying, this isn’t a review site. If you want a review of Scribblenaurs, John Walker’s review on Eurogamer is perfect. Rarely, if ever, have I seen a review that’s just so correct.
My own thoughts are the same, really. This is a huge achievement, maybe even a landmark game, but the controls and some of the puzzle solutions just really make me want to snap my DS in half at times.
Some of that’s down to playing the American version. Over here we leave out mince pies for Father Christmas. But the American Santa Claus doesn’t want them.
Mostly, though, it’s odd things like ducks not counting as farm animals. Or your character running through a tripwire and blowing everything up when you were trying to grab the end of a rope.
It’s deeply infuriating and broken and glitchy and it makes me more angry than any gave ever has… but it’s also genius. When a clever solution works, it’s the best game ever. And when you’re just messing about on the title screen summoning Mothman and Sasquatch and Champ and making them fight each other… well, yes, it’s just about the most joyful, surprising and wonderful thing ever.
It’s basically an impossible thing. It shouldn’t exist. It’s a harebrained, crackpot idea for a game. The fact that it really, actually does exist and almost, mostly, sometimes works is a miracle. Yeah, it’s all sorts of broken, but you have to play it.
Blast from the past!
Had a hankering for this, so dug it out and have spent an enjoyable few minutes using the stylus to make lines of matching Pokemon. Seems to have been unjustly forgotten this game – it’s a good little puzzler and the cutscenes look great.
Didn’t play much yesterday. Just wandered around doing some levelling and such. I found the Pikachu fan club, but didn’t get any gifts for having a Pikachu in my party. Oh well.
I have foiled the evil Team Galactic! Ha ha!
So that’s the end of the big story. Now I’ve just got… everything else left to do. Of most importance is the final gym and the Elite Four, but there’s tons and tons of toehr stuff to do, too.
Lots of play last night, mostly levelling up before tackling the next gym. My staravia evolved into a staraptor (if I got those names right…), but I moved her out of the party for a Swablu, who I’m now trying to evolve. The swablu can’t learn defog, so I’m having to avoid foggy areas, but that’s the only real negative.
Current team -
Chistery, level 31 Monferno with Mach Punch (Fight), Rock Smash (Fight), Flame Wheel (Fire) and Ember (Fire).
Lawson, level 35 Tangrowth with Vine Whip (Grass), Cut (Normal), Mega Drain (Grass) and AncientPower (Rock).
Cadaver, level 34 Alakazam with Psycho Cut (Psychic), Confusion (Psychic), Psybeam (Psychic) and Miracle Eye (Psychic).
PIKACHU (in Japanese), level 33 Pikachu with Thunder Wave (Electric), Shock Wave (Electric), Thunderbolt (Electric) and Slam (Normal).
Clarice, level 32 Staravia with Defog (Flying), Aerial Ace (Flying), Fly (Flying) and Wing Attack (Flying).
Duckula, level 34 Golduck with Shadow Claw (Ghost), Surf (Water), Water Pulse (Water) and Rock Smash (Fight).