Maniac Mansion, The Cave and Thimbleweed Park

by Ron Gilbert
Jan 08, 2015

The main criticism I heard about The Cave was the repetition of playing multiple times to get all the endings.  Each character had their own story and to see all 7 stories, you needed to play the game 3 times.  Each character had their own section of The Cave, so there was new stuff, but there were also 5 sections that had to be repeated.

While designing the game, I didn't think twice about this for two reasons:

1) That's the way Maniac Mansion worked and I was trying lift the spirit of that game. Despite what conspiracy theorists will say, the reason there are 7 characters in The Cave is that Maniac Mansion had 7 characters. It wasn't to make people play an entire extra playthrough to see everything. Occam's Razor and all that.

2) I really didn't expect players to finish The Cave and then immediately start it up again and do another playthrough. I figured people would take a break. Enjoy the story and the deep meaning behind it all, examine themselves and their own desires, then maybe a week or two later, they would play it again. It's why the repetition wasn't a huge concern for me.

2a) The Goldmine level was just poorly laid out. I will 100% cop to that, and I think that one level contributes a lot to the feeling of monotony on subsequent playthroughs.

Now, this post isn't some cathartic postmortem on the design of The Cave, so let's get on to Thimbleweed Park, which is what you (quite literally) paid your money to see.

Thimbleweed Park has 5 playable characters: Detective A, Detective B, Ransome, Delores, and Franklin. Each of those characters has their own story and ending. The design decision Gary and I face is how to avoid the repetition of having to play the entire game multiple times to see all the endings.

One option is you get all five endings in one playthrough, but that would mean the endings couldn't be mutually exclusive and they can't really change the outcome of the story. As storytellers, we want the endings to have meaning and finality.

We could do some artsy-fartsy flashback storytelling where the different endings are just possibilities, kind of like how it worked in Monkey Island 2 with Guybrush dying in the acid pit. Artsy!

We could just let players skip through sections they have already played, but this feels lame, kind of like fast forwarding your VCR to get to the good parts (this is 1987, VCRs were all the rage). It's too meta for me and feels like you're not really playing the game, you're just outside the game.

One of our biggest jobs over the next few weeks is to figure out how to do this and not force players to replay sections of the game just to see a different ending.

Although... you had to do that in Maniac Mansion.  You had to reply a lot of the game just to see Wendy's ending over Bernard's ending. I don't remember a single person complaining about that, yet, players complained non-stop about (what I perceived as) the same thing in The Cave.

How were they different? Or are they not, and it's the players that are different?  What does it mean for Thimbleweed Park? Will our heroes escape? Tune in next week! Same adventure time, same adventure blog.

- Ron

Marcel - Jan 08, 2015 at 11:58
One answer: people get bored more easily these days.

Zak Phoenix McKracken - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:57
I fully agree with this sentence.
But WE were raised with another level of "boring"! So, I really will not disappointed if I have to play many times to see many endings!

Jo C - Jan 08, 2015 at 11:59
I had no problems with the repeated playthroughs on the Cave. I loved the game; and in fact played it through 5 times to get both the good and the bad endings for each character :)

Derrick Reisdorf - Jan 08, 2015 at 13:20
I didn't mind a second playthrough with an entirely different set of 3 characters. It was that 3rd playthrough to see the 7th character that was somewhat, i don't know, hard to do.

I think it just felt different in MM because the characters themselves told the story whereas in The Cave it was the narrator and the levels that told the story.

On a side note, did The Cave oddly remind anyone of how some of the old DataSoft games played (e.g. The Goonies on C64)?

Jammet - Jan 08, 2015 at 18:29
Absolutely. Had the same thoughts when I saw The Cave for the first time. "Three Vikings" meets "The Goonies".

megazver - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:02
If I had to take a guess, I'd go with "people have different ideas about what constitutes good game design these days, than they did back in 1987".

suntorytimes - Jan 08, 2015 at 15:14
I agree with that. And to expand: "people *do* have ideas about what constitutes good game design these days". There were basically no [good] adventure games back then, so even a poorly designed game like Maniac Mansion was acceptable (apologies to Ron, but I know he - at least partially - agrees).
Things are different now, maybe some people are lazier, but other people simply want a better design than that of Maniac Mansion.

Nuno - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:04
Ron, the problem with 5 playthroughs, or play throughs, or play-throughs, is trophies/achievements, people are not playing games anymore they're are earning trophies and achievements...

Sad .. but true !!!

Derrick Reisdorf - Jan 08, 2015 at 13:24
I disagree. I think there are people that don't care about achievements/trophies, and those that do. Those that don't care vastly outweigh those that do.  And, most of those that care about trophies are completionists and will play through the game as many times as needed to get all the achievements/trophies.

Falko - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:06
In Maniac Mansion it worked well because of some real time events. The Edisons walked through the house, at one time the doorbell rang and a package arrived. In the second playthrough you'd place one character on the porch just to switch to her or him when the doorbell rang.

And we had no internet to just look things up which essentially is the fast forward button on the VCR. :)

Jammet - Jan 08, 2015 at 18:35
I absolutely agree. Also, having the Edisons walk around in their house was a strike of genius! It didn't happen all too frequently; later in the game most everyone was sticking to their rooms, but not knowing when and where anyone could turn up, and that they could catch you and imprison you, gave the game a layer of thrill and uncertainty.

It almost felt like Pac-Mans ghosts were coming to get you. I always walked into the rooms further in the back and I made sure to close doors, fearing that characters passing through adjenct rooms might actually be programmed to try to find me, using their senses, hearing when I say things, pick things up, and all that.

Of course the game didn't actually do this, but having something LIKE this in Thimbleweed Park would be truly fantastic! I missed it in Day of the Tentacle, where you could practically stroll all around the mansion without feeling at risk at any time.

Soong - Jan 12, 2015 at 03:09
I totally agree!  This is an awesome idea and I would love for this to be in Thimbleweed Park.  Characters trying to find you would be something unique in this adventure.

Soong - Jan 12, 2015 at 03:07
I love the real-time events.  I know progress-triggered events have their advantages, but maybe there could at least be a certain window of time during which an event is then triggered.  That way, it's not always exactly the same and it makes the characters and the world as a whole feel more alive.  I guess in the same way that characters not always being in the same location/having to keep track of where they are so you don't get caught is something I wish later adventures also had.

Matt G - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:06
I'd say make us play through it again - after all, it's an undiscovered game we just found in a dusty desk drawer, right?

Estranged - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:08
The difference is that Maniac Mansion and Zak McKracken had NPCs that moved around the place, had their own goals, reacted to what you do, many objects were wired so you could experiment and get different outcomes, befriend different characters, solve a puzzle in a different way, do something stupid and suffer different consequences.

That's why a playthrough didn't feel the same.

Derrick Reisdorf - Jan 08, 2015 at 13:28
I hope Thimbleweed uses a lot of that. Make it feel as though the characters are going about their ways whie we go about ours. Also, Maniac Mansion constantly gave us a sense of danger- knowing we weren't supposed to be roaming around the mansion and rummaging through stuff. I hope Thimbleweed places us in similar situations.

Lennart - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:08
When Maniac Mansion was released it was so much ahead of its time, that you probably wanted to play it again and again. I certainly did. I think Yahtzee Croshaw made a valid point in his Zero Punctuation review of the Cave in that he claimed replayability comes through all the different dialog options. I agree with that. In the Cave, every non character section plays exactly the same whereas in Monkey Island you could go everywhere, do Puzzles in different orders, try other things. I have no doubt Thimbleweed Park will have all that, so don't worry.
Another big difference with Maniac Mansion is that the locations were all the same. When playing Bernard you could think about, what if I cannot fix the Radio, how will I get rid of the Meteor with Michael? So the next playthrough is testing ideas that already formed in your head. That's my two cents. Make sure the locations stay largely the same and it's different characters thrown into the same world.

Julio - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:12
Ron... and why don't you think in making the adventure with only one character?
As far as I know, the big adventure of all times is not Maniac Mansion, but Monkey Island...
Personally I've been playing AGs since my 10 and I felt better playing only with one character. It made me feel more inside the story.
It's only my opinion. Whatever the number o characters you use I think It's gonna be great.

Jammet - Jan 08, 2015 at 18:49

Seckretli I hope that after Thimbleweed Park is a success, they might consider doing this again.

Imagine how awesome it would be like. "Lucasfilm made Maniac Mansion - and then came Zak. We've already had David Fox working with us, so ... the good sort of history is about to repeat itself..."

I know I'm crazy! Go ahead and blame the fanboy inside.

tcmsurfer - Jan 09, 2015 at 01:20
ZAK 2[017]!!! (not counting the fan based games here)

Tomius - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:13
I loved and replayed The Cave and Maniac Mansion, and for me, the main difference is that it took me a lot more of time to beat Maniac Mansion than The Cave.

When I finished Maniac Mansion, I was excited and felt some kind of acomplishment. I thought the game was awesome. Weeks or months later, I replayed.

When I finished The Cave, I was somehow excited, and I thought the game was awesome, and that I wanted more. So I replayed it right away.

Both are actually really really great games, though

LichiMan - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:15
If I understood correctly reading the kickstarter updates, you can play with those players at anytime, so you don't need to choose them before start playing? After reading this post I suppose we're not going to be able to save the game as in MM or MI?

Because if you can play with any character at anytime and you can save the game, you could load some older game state to start from that point and get another ending?

Emiliano - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:17
I think the difference is how people nowadays "consume" a videogame. They want to finish it 100% so that they can move onto the next one, never touching the first again.

In the past we were more likely to replay an old game after weeks or months or years but this is rarely the case now;  which it doesn't mean it doesn't happen anymore, but only a small percentage of gamers (the olders?) do that.

Anyway, I'm personally happy with the Maniac Mension way: if I have to replay some parts of the game, then it's fine.

Baboulen - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:19
I don't mind the multiple playthroughs provided there is a chance to play this awesome adventure game on my PS4 :)

Estranged - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:20
Just as an example of why the games had different playthroughs - the NPCs and the objects were wired to have tiny different outcomes.


Weird Ed (Maniac Mansion):
- if you turned the faucet in the kitchen on, he turns it off
- waits for a package to arrive (you can steal it... or not)
- goes to the kitchen to grab cheese (you can steal it... or not)
- you can befriend him... or not.

Purple Tentacle (Maniac Mansion):
- if you play with the reactor (made in Chernobyl) the tentacle comes to check what's wrong...
- it can catch you and imprison you... or not.

Bus driver (Zak McKracken):
- can be woken up by knocking on the bus with ANY hard object
- if you're with your girlfriend he'll ask if she wants to come too

Sushi in fish bowl (Zak McKracken):
- when pouring the water from the aquarium, you can save the fish's life...
- or you can pour it somewhere where the fish will die.

Post office (Zak McKracken):
Several ways to get in:
- disguise
- falling through
- phone distraction
Several ways to fail:
- bad disguise
- falling through without a rope
And this is all optional - no need to get in in the first place.

Even if we throw out the "various paths" to achieve something, just making the objects and the NPCs "real" and "alive", like the stewardess in the plane in Zak, who has her routine that can be disturbed, makes a playthrough to be fun and not feel redundant.

Ricardo Araujo - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:23
I don't think replaying is a problem if done right. The Cave feels repetitive because many parts are exactly the same thing,  no matter the character (Goldmine and Beach, aham). Yes, a few things can be done slightly differently, but they don't add to the story at all.

Whereas Maniac Mansion was richer - different characters say different things when solving the exact same problem. That alone is a big deal - I went through the whole game many times, even interacting with useless objects, just to see what they would say. And it usually was the same thing, but sometimes it was not and it was enough.

My solution to the problem would be to allow for the game to be repetitive in a mechanical way (you have to go through the same set of steps) where it absolutely can't be avoided, but allow for small quirks and differences for each character. Maybe they will say different things, maybe some easter-egg-like NPC or object will pop-up only when a certain combination of characters is chosen. And let those things contribute for us to know more about each character.

Of course, if time and resources allow, I wouldn't say no to effectively having a unique game for each combination of character...

Jesse Anderton - Jan 09, 2015 at 11:39
I was going to say something like this. It can be fun to revisit the same section if there’s another way to solve the problems, or other rewards because you did it with THIS combination of characters. I think another way to look at it is that the main reward of the character-specific regions is the novelty of the section, and the reward of the repeated sections can be seeing a different take on a familiar area.

Of course, The Cave did this: there were multiple possible solutions to the puzzles, depending on the characters you had. Maybe the way to approach it is to have different solutions based on number of playthroughs rather than based on character combination? If you got to see “what was really going on in that scene” on the second playthrough, that would introduce more novelty.

Ricardo Araujo - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:24
Estranged above beat me to the punch. :)

hoerry - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:30
The only time I really found the replaying annoying in The Cave was when I was trying to achieve the who wants to live forever- achievement. In my opinion the best way to handle the replay problem is to use autosave at the point(s) where the story branches.

Keith Johnston - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:31
I think one difference is that in The Cave, it took more attention to travel across the levels. In Maniac Mansion, you are just clicking to move. As you click and watch your character move, you are just thinking about the puzzles. And in some point and click games, you can just double click to have the character walk instantly to the edge of the screen / door.

Michael Stum - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:33
Heavy Rain used the VCR like system which allowed to start playing the game from a specific point (if memory serves right). In P&C Adventure games, it's not that big of a deal IMHO. Maniac Mansion takes a lot of time to play through the first time, but once you beat it once you can beat it in less than an hour without even trying too hard - some of the different solutions need some more time, but generally the repetition doesn't affect the game too much. The cave had Arcade elements that required some dexterity and somewhat slow travel (due to the size), thus the repetition was more obvious. Maybe in the second playthrough, a fast travel system would be neat (e.g., in Maniac Mansion it was often required to go to certain rooms - I know where I need to go, but I now spend several minutes going there, waiting for my 1541 to load rooms that don't contain any danger or puzzle-relevant things).

Tim Lammert - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:43
I think  that there is no difference between the Cave and Maniac aside from Lennarts point. And I´m sure players that played Maniac and had no Problem with several playthroughs are now between 30 and 40 Years old and are nor the ones that buy games these days. I mean they do but the ratio to the buyers from today, the younger ones is very small.
The buyers from today don´t know Games where you need to restart when you are at the end because you see you made a mistake,
They just don´t know it. They are spoilt. They only know games where ALWAYS is a way to go ahead. Or to turn on the ingame help...
I´m sure the orignal players have no problem with replaing this game again and again.

I´m one of these. I hate achievments. You get them partly for no reason. You are playing some game and you get an acheivment for not dying or better you get one for dying in a specific way - What has that to do with the Story??

I´m sooo happy about this Game I would love to be able to play it again and find new stuff. If you played it once and you have seen everything, why would you ever play again? You can do it a few years later, ok. You forgot most and can play a "half new" game. But having several Endings and possibilities was a great invention and offers more then a "one time fun" Game.

But I see your Problem. you earned a lot of critism about that in The Cave. The Cave never had this attention and was (this is my opinion) mostly buyed (in ratio) from the today players. They don´t like it. They need more Entertainment or get bored.

Now you have two possibilities, do an oldschool game with everthing (multiple Endings several playthrougs) and make the Fans glad,
or you make an Game for the crowd/the masses.

I think in your heard you are preferrring the first one, but you need to sell this Game and you want to earn money with it.

Like a selection at the beginning (like hard and easy mode) one for playing easy and be able to see everything in one playthrough or you choose the Hard/Oldschool way and need to play every single version again.

I bet this isn´t easy to realize... But you would have both an real oldschool game that ist selllable to every gamer generation.

Just my opinion.
I don´t want to be you at this point.

Best Regards from Germany
Tim Lammert

N - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:44
I don't mind replaying sections with different characters if I can use the new characters' abilities in a different way to get different solutions. One thing I enjoyed in Stacking is that there were multiple solutions to a lot of the puzzles, which could be found using different dolls, and that the player using different solutions was tracked in the menu, so there was an additional incentive to finding multiple solutions.

AJ - Jan 08, 2015 at 12:51
I agree that having a lot of dialog options totally makes playing through a specific part again more fun. I still feel like every time I play through Monkey Island, there's always some dialog option I haven't tried yet that gives me a good laugh. I've watched kids play Monkey 1 for hours just interacting with all of the pirates on Melee Island!

With multiple endings, I think playing through something again allows you to catch stuff characters say or do that you might have missed the first time through. Another one of my favorite game series is Zero Escape (which is more like a visual novel with puzzles); the latest game had 26 different endings. It used a flow chart so you could jump to specific parts you hadn't played through yet, but I often found myself playing through some of the parts again anyway to try and understand the overall story better. The first game of the series, '9 Hours 9 People 9 Doors', had only 6 endings but a lot of parts you had to play over again. You could 'fast forward' through it, but after getting a particular ending and finding out small tidbits of the whole picture, playing through the same part again with the new knowledge makes it even more interesting than the first time through. You understand why a certain character acts a certain way or why they said what they did. It keeps the repeated parts fresh and intriguing, and lets the player act upon what they already know. As you get more and more endings, you start guessing about what the overall story is really about, but you may still be missing a few small facts that will completely overturn your inferences and blow your mind.... lol

It could be that there are few people who still have the patience to play games that way though. It can be really tempting just to go look up a walkthrough or simply read a synopsis and be done with it.

delMar - Jan 08, 2015 at 13:03
Yeah, just add a little bit of randomness caused by NPCs and have us replay the game again and again and again to see everything.

Davide - Jan 08, 2015 at 13:32
The annoying thing in the Cave for me was the number of selectable characters/ available characters
(I played Maniac Mansion years ago, so I don't remember :P).
I mean, in The Cave, you choose 3 characters from a set of 7.. so to see all endings you should
play 3 times, and the last time you are forced to select and re-play the story of 2 characters that you've already chosen.
Probably, if the number of available characters would be a multiple of the number of selectable characters
subsequent playthoughs wouldn't annoying.
Plus, you could introduce small changes in the game when different characters approach the same problem
(e.g. an ultra difficult puzzle for a character to open a door could be just "smash it" for another or vice versa, etc..)
and so you could attenuate the sense of repetition; it is annoying for me when you are facing the same puzzle with
the same character just because you are interested, in that moment, to know about the story of another character.
Btw, I use to like repetition in other kind of games (more focused on gameplay than on story).
Probably in storytelling this could be also attenuated by introducing sometimes hooks/informations that
are interesting but that you could completely understand only when you know the ending of the story.
So a 2nd re-play could give you a deeper understanding of the story/characters/message.

manoflowmoralfiber - Jan 08, 2015 at 14:23
What about making the different character paths really distinct from each other? Each character would go through the same storyline, but have an entirely different set of experiences. They could be at the same place, but at different times, or experience the same event, but from different places or perspectives. And sometimes, their paths would intersect...and ahh, those would be the interesting moments. Moments that make you wonder, dude, what was that all about? And then you find out in your second playthrough. Or third. Or fourth.

thehmc - Jan 08, 2015 at 14:23
Few questions first. These are necessary for my idea.

1. Are the characters set when you choose them at the beginning like MM?

2. Is there any character that HAS to be used every time, like Dave in MM?

3. If #1 is a yes, how many characters are used simultaneously? Is it 3 characters like MM?

So my idea is basically to make the player do multiple play throughs, but change the game drastically depending on the characters chosen. And to only let the player choose 2 at a time for each play through. Or say, the one character you HAVE to have and 2 others, like MM.

This may be completely unrealistic and an impossible amount of work, but the basic idea is to have a lot of different areas, puzzles, jokes, and narrative for each character that isn't even accessible to other characters, so that basically, when a player chooses 2 characters for the first play through, it's a drastically different game than when the player chooses the 2 different characters for the next play through.  

Obviously, there would have to be some common npcs and areas through every play through, but I would minimize those as much as possible. But even in those common areas and story, try to make as many rooms and items that only certain characters can access/use as possible. Keeping in mind that the payoff for games like these are the punchlines, narrative moving forward, and exploration.

When I look back on MM, exploration and finally unlocking a new "area" were among my favorite payoffs. First, finding the key under the doormat and getting in the house. Then finally getting upstairs. etc.

Now imagine that, if on a second play through of MM with 2 different sidekick characters, that the interior of the Mansion were almost completely different. That only a few rooms of the house were the same, and that the general story was the same, but that you had almost a drastically different house to explore with new puzzles and a few different or additional npcs. Basically, each character would come with it's own exclusive content. Rooms that you couldn't enter before would be accessible etc.

Basically what I'm saying is try to cram as much character exclusive content as possible into the game. That way, yes the main character that you have to use will still have their areas every play through, but that's only 1/5th of the game. Really beef up the areas, npcs, puzzles, items, and events that are exclusive to certain characters. And that content will change how the main character interacts with his standard environment and even open up some exclusive content that the main character wasn't able to access in their "area" before.

Example: Let's say there's the hotel. Only secondary character 3 has access to the top 3 floors and all the items, npcs, puzzles and events/jokes within. Character 3 gets a taser which they give to main character. Main character can now tase the bouncer to a nightclub that either they couldn't access at all in another play through, or that they could only access part of in a different play through. Let's say, in the previous play through, they could only get into the club basement and access the items/puzzles/events that helped complete that particular play through. This time, they get into the main floor of the club and a slew of other items/npcs/convos/events that they didn't before. Keeping in mind that all these new jokes, stories, convos, explorations are the actual payoffs in the game.  

I think beefing up the character exclusive content is what makes multiple PTs enjoyable. Though, I have no idea of it's viable or if it's an impossible amount of work. If it's not too much work, you could even focus on combo-character exclusive content where it's what I just described, but only accessible with certain combinations of characters.

Soong - Jan 12, 2015 at 03:49
I think character exclusive areas are part of the problem, not the solution.  If a player expects new areas for new characters, then everything that is the same can feel like a disappointment.  However, if you do it like in Maniac Mansion, you get to do different things in the same locations.  So every little change (also dialog changes in later games) makes the player feel good. You find all these things in your first playthrough that don't really make sense and you cannot use, but a different character can use them all of a sudden and you think "Oh, so that's what this is for!".

I think this also separates players in a good way.  If you know a second playthrough will be mostly the same game with a few changes here and there, some players might not play the game a second time.  The ones who do are probably the ones who like finding small changes in the details and the ones who want to explore the game completely.  In The Cave, a single playthrough would have felt like not completing the game because you know every character has their own specific area.  This means some people will play just for the new areas and the rest is boring to them.

Pedram - Jan 08, 2015 at 14:52
First I'd like to agree with the following points from previous posts:

1. Complexity:  MM felt very complex, with many options and dialogue with realtime events. I even played Monkey Island many times to go through all the dialogue. In the cave, when I entered a level I already played, and knew I had to do things A, B, C, D and F, it really wasn't motivating for me to do them, because everything behaved exactly the same and you had to walk a lot.  

2. NPCs: In MM you felt you could wander a living house. I remember playing the Edna fridge scene a couple of times, to see what happens, if she gets you. Or save and just go into Eds room, with him in it (I think you could also run away and outside the front door, where he gave up. When he did, I sneaked into the room with another kid to get the card behind the hamster. Or you could just wait for a cut scene where he would leave his room. Cool!).

One thought to maybe make the replayability more enjoyable:

You will of course have many scenes, which are common to all character combinations, which will tell the main thread of the story. You could have the stuff that happens in the respective alternate threads make the main thread be shown in a very different light.

As an example the detectives might arrest somebody because of some hard evidence. Only if the player chose a certain character would he/she know, that the hard evidence was just a very weird coincidence and the arrested person was indeed not guilty ("Holy shit, that poor guy was sentenced for life in my first playthrough... And that weird tasting coffee was freshly made Kopi Luwak? (").

As a good movie, that showed the same scenes over and over again without getting boring, I'd like to reference "A night at McCool's" ( .

MmFan - Jan 08, 2015 at 15:31
I really don't mind replaying parts of a game, as long as there are a few variations (complexity, random events and NPCs might be the key). It's like visiting an old friend or beeing with a woman you know very well. I find it very relaxing (says an old gamer in his mid 40).

PrinzJohnny99 - Jan 08, 2015 at 15:41
I think the main differrence is that The Cave is completely linear while in Maniac Mansion the Storylines are woven into each other so in MM it helps to keep the flow when you can just solve some already known puzzles while you are stuck with a new one. It also gives you time to think about a solution.

Gosh, it's hard to enter a comment here with all that math stuff you have to calculate...

Damian - Jan 08, 2015 at 15:54
Back to the Future, duuuuuuuuude!

Record 1st play. At the end of TP, put a "Delorean", take everybody back, leave previously used characters unavailable (you can't meet yourself! It's a Time Paradox!), and use other characters while playing previous play (They'll meet original players, that will complete same puzzles again).

Yeah, baby! Problem solved, Doc!


k0SH - Jan 08, 2015 at 15:55
"The main criticism I heard about The Cave was the repetition of playing multiple times to get all the endings."
Hmmmmm..... I heard the main criticism was that it is no classic adventure game as advertised  ;-)

Hori - Jan 08, 2015 at 16:55
How would you feel about "partitioning" the game into different parts, each playable with one specific character?

1.) by time
Like some character only acts during the night (student working the night-shift? night-active nerd?) while another character is playable only in the morning (parent while the kids are at school?) and another one only in the afternoon (schoolkid?).
Let certain things only happen at certain times (like watching some '24'-episode)...

2.) by location
Like someone already suggested assign different characters to different floors of the hotel or areas of the surrounding.
If the characters are some type of FBI-like agents them splitting up would be perfectly plausible.

3.) by story
Like in the "Song of Ice and Fire"-books.
Each character stars in several, not-subsequent chapters of the same, whole story.

Replaying "shared" areas of the game could be ever so much fun if you could see your other self sometimes.
Remember when you (as officer Barney from Blueshift) were standing at the locked door in the Black Mesa Transit System when a train came by with a scientist - your former self (as Gordon Freeman from Half Life)? Epic!
Or a scene like in the 2nd Back To The Future movie where the 2nd-Movie-Marty McFly sees the 1st-movie-Marty-McFly perform on stage while hanging above him?

Why not let one character visit for example the hotels kitchen and make something somewhere go CRASH without any apparent reasen.
And later - with another character visit the same kicthen and hide in a cupboard because you think some bad guy was near - and then make that character knock a kettle from the stove by accident.

Why not even record the players own moves from 1st playthrough and replay those - now as an NPC - during the 2nd playthrough?
Like a "drive-atar"...

Personally I´m not entirely happy with visiting the same locations and encountering the same puzzles with different characters because I´m afraid of situations where I try and try to come up with a solution for e.g. opening a locked door and not noticing that that door simply won´t open for that character(-combination) whatever I do.
At least make perfectly clear if something won´t ever work in the current constellation!

What are your thoughts on an "Indy Quotient"?

What about some kind of flowchart-view of the entire games "chapters" (scenes/rooms/situations/puzzles) - available only after finishing the game for the 1st time - showing you what chapters or situations you already visited/solved and letting you jump right there, perhaps with the characters of your own choosing?

Best regards and so many thanks for all the hours of fun you guys already gave me!

Stefano E. - Jan 08, 2015 at 17:04
I don't mind playing with different characters, as long as the repeated sections are not exactly the same. For example the same puzzle must be solved differently by each character. I know that this adds quite a bit of work to the designers, but I'd love to see it implemented. I actually really liked Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade where the main story forked into parallel ways of solving certain sections, and then merge later. I never understood how to pass the blimp for example, but I still loved that game.

Marco Lizza - Jan 08, 2015 at 18:35
The Indy Zeppelin section is one of my favourite (just after Castle Brunwald which is *amazing*). Still remember that day, back when I was at home from school due to flu, when I managed to solve it. :)

Stefano E. - Jan 09, 2015 at 14:47
Oh man! I always wanted to pass that one! I actually think tha IJATLC was as good as MI, but for some reason nobody really mentions it!

Marco Lizza - Jan 09, 2015 at 17:01
Altough I love Monkey Island, for some reason I always found IJATLC to be my preferred one. It has tons of possibilities and options to explore...

algardex - Jan 08, 2015 at 18:02
you could try to do it like the resident evil games did (the old ones, you know the action/adventure ones 1,2,3,veronica). get the first ending and then when you play again have the puzzles/stuff  altered/rearranged with different triggers at places depending on which ending you are heading to, add some new locations/stuff per play through, and keep count on the endings achieved to block/not repeat the same puzzles/stuff from reappearing.  story wise you could tie it up like parallel stories and other creative stuff

Dada - Jan 08, 2015 at 18:12
I haven't played the Cave yet, so maybe i'm just mumbling but i believe there is big difference between overcoming the frustration of replaying a part of a point'n click adventure game where you just have to know where to point and click to advance and going through a part of a game where you just don't know how many times its gonna take you to fall and get your ass ripped to pieces in order to pass some elaborate trap-thingy.

Jammet - Jan 08, 2015 at 18:17
I know you probably don't like hearing this, but The Cave is nothing like Maniac Mansion. But that is just my opinion. Nobody complains about beating the same stages in action games. People replay Mario games all the time. For one and the same ending. Where Princess Peach whacks Mario over the head and goes to another crappy castle.

I believe the pacing of point and click adventures is slower, and the player has more time to work their imagination. You spend a lot more time in the same rooms and ... you get a feel for them. Much of The Cave just zips past you in a flash. There is an obstacle. Do this thing, proceed, never look back.

Revisiting locales is something adventure players are used to, and it indeed is something many players don't mind at all - it just comes natural to a game like Maniac Mansion. It's not a road movie. And some of these rooms might even feel rather homey. I used to run Maniac Mansion all these years ago just to traipse about and act like this was my house. For realz.

It's a fascination that has to do with the freedoms you have in it, and that you can treat it much like it's a simulation of what you'd do if you were actually there. As a kid, I sometimes would do nerdy things like imagine how I'd walk around and move about, if my life had a SCUMM interface. It was hilarious, walking down hallways, all stiff and bobbing my head, than turning towards a door, reading the plaque on it and then acting like someone clicked on me to open it, only to turn around again to face a non existant audience and say, "It's locked."

Please don't judge - XD I was in love with the stuff then and I was a kid. Still am in love with it today! You have NO idea how happy I am that after you made The Cave, which I admittedly didn't like (because I was hoping it'd be like a SCUMM Adventure), you're *actually* doing this! I still can't believe this is happening! No I'm not foaming at the mouth, but you see, this is a dream come true!

I don't mind doing character specific puzzles over and over again just *like* I did in Maniac Mansion. If you can use today's Technology[tm] and logic to create new puzzles that can only work because TWO or even THREE specific characters can work them out TOGETHER, that'd be brilliant, but it's only an option.

Like, say, each character has certain things only they can do. And you can solve puzzles combining their skills and abilities rather than combining items? I'm all for it.

Dude A knows pottery and about security?
Dude B has a grasp of handling extreme heat safely?
Dude C can handle all kinds of chemicals and wood work?
Dude D is into history and smithing?

And you want a key replica?

Dude A and B could make a replica made of hardened clay.
Dude B and D could craft one the old school way.
Dude A and C could harden clay with some coating.
Dude A and D could make a lockpick.

And on and on and on ..

Gaston Blanco - Jan 08, 2015 at 18:22
I personally HATE games that have alternative endings.  I prefer to experience the authors intended fate for each character like in any good book or film.

Characters development and story is one of the main reasons behind the magic in graphic adventures. When you know there is only ONE possible ending for each character, the whole game feels like you are going through a journey in getting to know the character, to finally discover all the aspects that the author created about it. If you have alternative endings, it makes you feel like the author did not have a clear idea about the character and in my opinion that gets away a lot of the excitement of the game.

My take on this subject would be: once a character path has got to an end, inactivate it. When the final character gets to its end, the game finishes

salty ride - Jan 08, 2015 at 18:24
i loved playing adventures several times to see the different outcomes. i even played boureau 13 a lot of times and that game was not as good.

the annoying thing about the cave for me was the generic parts, like the goldmine or the beach, because it didn't matter which player you used, the puzzles were the same.

that and the part of only holding only one object, so you had to go through the whole place just to get something you had to leave behind.

Jammet - Jan 08, 2015 at 19:08
I love multiple endings in the sense that they are dynamic, and adjust to your accomplishments and oopsies in the game while playing it. And funny extras. Anyone remember replacing the national flag with a tentacle flag in Day of the Tentacle? How various bits were different depending on what you did before, in various games.

I've played games like the old JRPG Chrono Trigger, which had 14 different endings (even though only about half of them were meant seriously).  So I don't mind replaying the games to see what else happens? These endings can all be satisfactory, if they are each made with attention to detail and witty humor.

Sly - Jan 08, 2015 at 18:34
Around the time of Maniac Mansion, the Internet wasn't a thing.  These days every person and their dog can hop online and express a gripe about the smallest issue.  Many more people may have had an issue with replaying Maniac Mansion, but they weren't able to get opiion out into a world-wide public space as easily as they can now.  Mind you, there may well have been a lot fewer people have an issue with replaying Maniac Mansion, but without the measure that the Internet provides we will never know for sure.

That is just one factor.  The rapidly diminishing attention span is another, and the need to be an anonymous dickwad on the Internet is also a factor.

Robert - Jan 08, 2015 at 19:00
Playing through sections again opens up the players to see things they missed the first go round. There is nothing wrong with repeating. Those who don't want to repeat themselves can just watch a play through on YouTube.

RC - Jan 08, 2015 at 19:25
I think many of the people who complain about this are people who don't care all that much about the game and its endings anyway, the only reason they tried to get all endings, is to have all achievements (something I don't understand)... So if you are only playing a game to get all of its achievements and not because you actually want to play the game, then of course any kind of repetition makes the tedious task of playing the game you don't actually want to play all the more annoying. At this point anything could make such a person snap. Maybe they didn't even enjoy the game the first time, BUT THEY HAVE TO HAVE ALL ACHIEVEMENTS SO THEY CAN SHOW THEIR FRIENDS!!!

So I'm saying don't implement any achievements for seeing all possible endings, in that case those people will never try it and thus won't complain about the repetition. Easy fix!

Ploe - Jan 08, 2015 at 19:50
The number of characters map to the amount of people you can have in your party? (You already sound kind of decided on that...)

Or you start with them all and you can lose individuals along the way. Of course you'd most definitely be breaking your own imperatives for game design there...

Or slightly differing content and puzzle chains for each combination of characters, interleaved rather than separate boxes/levels. A world that expands depending on the different people you drop in to it.

I'm sure you'll think of something! =)

HardcoreRetro30yoStudyingAndUnemployed - Jan 08, 2015 at 20:19
What about including an Easter egg? I would put a computer in a basement.

This would be the Συζυγία 8000, a computer promoted by company that did game systems.  The president is  a Greek entrepreneur, the computer was designed by a friendly bearded man and a bunch of EE hippies. Despite this insane combination and many shortcomings, it became one of the best home computers on the 80s.

There could be some disks and floppies with games, and a BBS where people play the uncle of mmorpg and share "stuff".

Iron Curtain - Jan 09, 2015 at 22:32
"The president is  a Greek entrepreneur, the computer was designed by a friendly bearded man and a bunch of EE hippies."

Would this be the "Greek entrepreneur"?

David - Jan 08, 2015 at 21:54
The Cave had two important differences, to my mind:

1. It was action-y. You have to pay more attention to movement, so you're paying closer attention to the places you're passing through. Paying attention to platforming gets repetitive quickly, I feel.

2. The non-character sections don't change based on your characters. I don't remember anywhere with different puzzle solutions or different story elements based on character interactions.

alja123 - Jan 09, 2015 at 03:23
Actually there were plenty of non-character sections which change based on which characters you have.

The most striking one is the zoo which can be skipped using certain characters (the knight, monk, and time-traveler all have ways of using their abilities to get the hotdog without going through the puzzle chain). I've always wondered whether this was completely intentional.

There also are some other places where specific characters abilities let you solve puzzles differently (like there are occasionally hooks which the adventurer can swing over). I didn't mind replaying the game as different characters because finding these shortcuts on repeated playthoughs is fun.

One of the problems with the mine car level was that, as far as I know, there is no real way of playing it differently whichever characters you have.

David - Jan 09, 2015 at 14:03
Hm, I suppose you must be right. I could rephrase it to there being no particularly interesting differences, given that it wound up all feeling same-y to me?

Matt Lacey - Jan 08, 2015 at 22:00
My only beef with playing through The Cave multiple times was indeed the mining part. It just took time to walk up and down the ladders and a teleport would have been a god-send.

I think the difference between that and Maniac Mansion is perhaps the feeling that the Cave would be very different each time, hence you wanted to see more straight away, whereas with MM you knew that a lot of it would be the same and so taking a break came more easily.

cigumo - Jan 08, 2015 at 23:32
the Papers Please save tree does not feel lame at all.

Gins - Jan 10, 2015 at 07:13
I just came here to suggest a Papers, Please! style save system. Plus 1 for this.
Have the game auto-save at defined checkpoints and also allow manual saves.

It might not do away with having to replay some parts AFTER the branching decisions, but it may be the best way to organize saves.

Iurii - Jan 09, 2015 at 00:12
Now that I think of it, it could indeed be strange that I had a lot of fun replaying 'Maniac Mansion' with other characters while I still can't force myself to replay 'The Cave' because of those boring compulsory and common levels...
I think that the reason is that 'Maniac Mansion' was truly non-linear - you had the whole mansion at your disposal while wandering rooms freely in any order and solbing puzzles in different ways. And in 'The Cave' everything was rather straightforward - with single way to solve those arcade (and not actually adventure) common levels.

humaldo - Jan 09, 2015 at 00:25
I'm not a fan of multiple endings, I think their time is over. And, as some people already stated, totay's players are conditioned to complete everything, thanks to achievements, gamerscore and trophies. And they simply don't have the time and motivation to play one game a couple of times, because of the oversupply of game releases these these days.

Multiple endings made sense BEFORE youtube was around. But nowadays, the first thing everyone does after finishing a game is searching for all the other endings on youtube and then moving on to the next game to finish. In general, most multiple endings feel cheap. Remember Heavy Rain? It was heavily advertised with "having over 20 endings" or so. Sounded great! In the end, you just saw a couple of very short unrelated movie sequences before the credits started. Boring!

Brian Ruff - Jan 09, 2015 at 01:07
There's no solution to this issue. Probably best to just go ahead and cancel the project after all. Making games is hard, like the man said.

nico - Jan 09, 2015 at 01:18
" I don't remember a single person complaining about that, yet, players complained non-stop about (what I perceived as) the same thing in The Cave."

For what it's worth, he's my take on that question, as a random gamer. The Cave is a plateform game, and not a super tight platform with mind breaking controls, like, say, Super Mario or Mega Man, it made replaying levels and the whole game much more tedious that it is for a point & click game. It's actually one of the reason I didn't enjoy The Cave that mcuh, while I love sidescrollers and point & click games. I like P&C games in which you can set the walking speed super fast or can breeze trough screens without seing your character walking all the way trough the room by double clicking or the like. It's particularly tedious when you're stuck on a puzzle and wander arround the game aimlessly.

As of the seven character thing, my concern with that, is that the third playtrough was boring because for two of the three characters, you already know what's going on. It would have worked better with either 6 or 9 character. But well, considering I wasn't a big fan of the core gameplay, I might be a bit biased. Good luck for Thimbleweed Park, and thank you for sharing your thoughts with us :)

Ben Henson - Jan 09, 2015 at 01:24
Multiple characters did not work as well in The Cave for a couple of reasons:

Firstly the way that The Cave was divided into distinct sections that had to be progressed through linearly, with certain characters only able to access/solve certain sections. In Maniac Mansion the same locations and objects were available to all characters, it was just if/how the characters could use them that changed. This is a big, big difference. The most important one.

Secondly in The Cave it was difficult to get through sections you already knew how to solve very quickly, I guess due to it's platform-y nature. In Maniac Mansion if you could speed through the stuff you already knew quite quickly (or at least it felt that way), with the exception of something you needed to happen being on a timer. IMHO in Thimbleweed Park multiple playthroughs will not be annoying if the player is able to dictate the pace they move through the game. So for example no unskippable cutscenes or long winded animations you need to sit and wait for, double-click to instantly teleport through doors, etc.

The only other request I would have is have something that explicitly lets the player know how many endings he has or has not seen. Don't make me look a up a FAQ to find out if there is still more I haven't seen.

Soong - Jan 12, 2015 at 04:10
But wouldn't showing something like "1/8 endings seen" feel like the game requires multiple playthroughs and also take away part of the mystery?  For example, without the comments here, I would not have known that The Cave had good and bad endings.  I always tried to solve puzzles in a friendlier way, but I couldn't figure out a way.  So I assumed there was one ending per character.  So I probably would have found out when I tried playing the game a year from now or so.  For me at least, thinking there might be something else hidden in the game is a big thing.  I really enjoy exploring older games again and finding new things.  I can avoid an online guide to the game but I cannot avoid an in-game progress display.

Matthias B - Jan 09, 2015 at 01:57
I think the most important thing is to spread out per-character content over the game. You should never have whole sections that play exactly the same. Dialogs are especially important. No dialog should ever be exactly the same with different characters, even if the outcome of the dialog is the same.

David K - Jan 09, 2015 at 02:10
I think that having diverging paths within each characters story arc may go some way to address this concern, Similar to how it was done in Telltale's Wolf Among Us. Then those players who don't like having to replay parts of the game may say "It sucks I have to do Detective A's part again but at least I can find out what happens when I choose to investigate the distress call from the Pet store instead of pursuing that handbag snatcher." Even if those paths lead to the same place, if the puzzles/jokes/experiences are different then that is something to get excited about going back and discovering.  

Unfortunately that means a lot more complexity and work to create additional content for each character. But maybe it wouldn't have to be all that much. Even if it was just in many instances choosing one dialogue option means that I miss out on hearing the all the other possible responses/information/jokes (like in some encounters in the MI games. I'm thinking of the first meeting with Largo specifically) I'd be way more keen to revisit those scenes and find out what I'd missed out on the first time.

Matt - Jan 09, 2015 at 03:01
1. In The Cave ALL characters appealed to me. In Maniac Mansion I always played with Dave and Bernard. The third person was choosen randomly and was more of a placeholder. AND: It's a different thing if you get alternate endings or if you have new locations and puzzles. With "The Cave" I had the feeling that I'll miss 50% of the game if I don't play through it again. In MM it was just: "Ok, I miss some dialog and another sequence, that's ok".

2. I play through Monkey Island 1 & 2, Indy 3 & 4 at least once every 2 years. But not through MM or Zak. That's because MI and Indy are very funny and appealing to play through. Monkey because of tons of funny dialog that you can try and won't die if you select stupid dialog options.
IMPORTANT: Nowadays you can often go through ALL dialog options with a character. In MI there are often one option dialog sequences, where you can choose one option and can't go back.
I replay Indy because there are several way to accomplish things (I played through Castle Brunwald in Indy 3 at least 5 times to check all possibilities)

3. I'm not sure if you can compare Cave and a classic point & click adventure. It's hard work to play through a side scroller, since it needs concentration and permanent input (hold left, hold left, jump, grab ... miss ladder... DAMNED!.... hold left, hold left, jump...), while you can click through an adventure game while sipping coffee and do some other stuff beside it.

Joost - Jan 09, 2015 at 03:28
In MM the industry was still young and the concept was weird enough to keep players busy for a long time.
I didn't even know there were multiple endings in MM - darn, Bernard will be in Green's room for the weekend...

Also, *you're, not your. Geeze.

Mike - Jan 09, 2015 at 03:40
I did not like playing Cave multiple times because it was more of an action-adventure and I dislike those. If a point and click has an action sequence now and then, that is fine but I should be able to skip it. From what I know about us old time adventurers, we like to explore and think, yes. But action just makes us lose our focus.  And if i buy an adventure,  I want an adventure, not a platformer.

This all said, regarding multiple endings: maybe you can take a cue from the japanese visual novels. Have a gallery for every character and only show  the important parts they suceeded in. Leave the unfinished business as blank cars. So everyone should know that they missed something for that character and if they want they can hunt for  the diffetent story/ending.

Anf if you tease that if someone gets all endings and dialogues thete will be a naked girl and the single achievment you can get, more gamers will try to see it :)

Arminator - Jan 09, 2015 at 03:59
While I enjoyed The Cave as it was, my wife also complained about the repetitive stages like the Goldmine, because she played it on the iPad and was frustrated about the controls (she usually plays "casual" games that don't require Jump&Run dexterity, whereas I grew up on the C64 and some of the hardest pixel-exact jump&runs)

She might have been less frustrated, if the Gold Mine (she didn't even bother to play further to get to the Island) offered slightly different puzzle solutions for different characters.

Maniac Mansion and Zak did it right by allowing me to solve exactly the same puzzle in different and often more rewarding ways.

For example the two headed squirrel puzzle in Zak McKracken:
At that time in the adventure I only had Zak as character, and one goal: get into the cave. I could kill the squirrel or give it peanuts. I could use several tools to just dig open the cave opening, but if I used the butter knife to dig, it'd be bent out of shape and I could sell it at the pawn shop for quite a sum of money, because it was considered to be a piece of art.

And that's what was missing from the repeating stages in The Cave, in my (and my wife's) opinion. Personally I enjoyed The Cave, and finished it with all endings regardless. But for my wife, who was also struggling with the iPad controls, it was a show stopper.

Another thing I liked about Maniac Mansion, there *always* was something to do, even if it wasn't needed for advancing the story (the hamster in the microwave for example). The game world felt "alive", and didn't just serve as a purpose to string puzzles together.

MarcusG - Jan 09, 2015 at 04:54
I haven't played The Cave, yet. Maybe I will at some point.

I agree with some of the things suggested here: One aspect is almost certainly that gamers today bore more easily and are accustomed to a different style of game design these days. Even if you are a veteran gamer from the old days, chances are your preferences changed over the course of time. It happened to me. I can't stand repetition in games anymore, although it never bothered me when I was younger. This is why I only very, VERY rarely do multiple playthroughs. I consider it a waste of time - and time, somehow, seems to get scarcer and therefore more precious the older I get. ;-)

A solution for this could be to keep consecutive playthroughs more interesting by making them unpredictable. As already pointed out in other comments, Maniac Mansion had a few non-linear elements to keep players on their toes. I believe the game would benefit from offering different, branching-out paths opening up not only based on player action but also pure randomness. Making it so that no two playthroughs are exactly the same.

MarcelTaeumel - Jan 09, 2015 at 05:26
What about somehow indicating (GUI, HUD, ...) the current storyline that the player is pursuing in a particular gaming session? Maybe it is not only the avatars, which decide the current plot and ending, but also your actions throughout the game.

I kind of like Telltale's "He will remember that." and "She noticed your lying face." There, however, you have no clue if something different/bad will happen to you throughout the game. This may be okay for your first time playing though the game because it feels less strategic and more immersive/adventurous ... or so. But I think -- especially for players who enjoyed the whole game once before -- an indication about whether your actions will yield the same ending might raise the fun factor.

If the choice of avatar would mean that kind of indication, fine. If the pursuing different plots/endings would be more flexible/complex, well... What about showing/using mood? ("An angry rockstar walks into a bank...") :)


Curd - Jan 09, 2015 at 05:35
My two cents: I played DOTT several times, just for the fun of it, and liked to optimize the number of clicks and switches between characters needed to get to the end. Even without different endings.

I also played Monkey Island 1 and 2 several times, but not as often, as the fencing took a lot of tries and you couldn't easily speed it up. If I remember correctly, you just needed some luck to get to the last answers. But what really annoyed me was the library in MI2. I didn't believe that any of those books could be relevant, ignored them and needed some outside help to get to the end ...

So, what I want to say is this: I think people will like to go through the story several times, different endings or not, but please avoid parts that take a lot of time because you need to do something brainless repetitively. It's what killed the fun for me in WOW: Killing some beast may be fun, but killing the same kind of beast 20 times is far away from 20 times the fun.

And by the way: Guybrush explaining why he is not dead after falling in the acid pit is in my opinion one of the funniest moments that ever happened in a computer game. I sometimes relate to it when I try to explain why I love point and click adventures in general and the old MI2 in particular.

Soong - Jan 12, 2015 at 04:51
This is so true.  I love The Cave but I see where the problem comes from.  I think one part is actually a good thing working in a bad way here:  The story is so fascinating that would want more of it right away.  I love the narrator and the characters are really cool so I wanted all of it right away.  And then there are parts in the game that require the same timing every time.  In P&C adventure games, I can skip dialog if I already know it by heart and playing Monkey Island 2 the second time can be done in about 2 hours, even if you forgot some of the puzzles.  My friends and I actually used to do this just for fun.  So what I'm saying is, you can pick the parts you want to spend more time on and hurry through the parts you're not quite so interested in.  In an adventure game like The Cave, you still need to move items from A to B and actually make all the jumps and so on instead of just clicking.  Also, without any dialog options to try out, there is less new content to discover.

The only somewhat tedious puzzle in any of your P&C adventure games is getting all the lines for the sword fights in The Secret of Monkey Island.  I actually liked the library in Monkey Island 2, though.  The puzzle was really hard, but all those funny titles and descriptions are just awesome!

lobopampeano - Jan 09, 2015 at 05:47
For me, the cave was so unlike MM that it is hard for me to make a direct comparison.
First MM was a longer, harder game.
With one playthrough I had a lot more satisfaction and sense of achievement than with my first Cave playthrough (way more).
The platforming elements I didn't like. I didn't like the whole system of holding one element at a time. And nowadays I expect that with a double click I can skip watching the character walk through the whole room.
As you pointed out, the mine part was pretty bad... The guy yelling all the time was annoying.
I also found the different stories a little repetitive... In fact I wasn't interested in the different endings at all I was only interested in the parts of the cave you only explore with a specific character.
In order to make a second playthrough worthwhile:
1) Though obvious, if the original playthrough is great it is easier to persuade oneself to do it again... if it was "ok" then not so much.
2) If endings are meaningful and interesting, and very different I will likely feel motivated to play in search of new ones. If they are not so interesting or not so different or relevant in their differences then maybe, playing again from the very beginning might be something less desirable.
3) If puzzles have different solutions, second play-through are less painful. If different solutions show small different story variations and jokes then it might get really interesting.
4) If on each play-through there is something randomly changed that makes a couple of puzzles to be necessarily solved in a different way, then it might force/guarantee point 3.
5) Things to do that are not necessary to finish the game. Things to see and people to mess with. The cave was so minimalistic that Ii felt compelled to rush through the whole thing. In elegant puzzle games less can be more, in this type of game more details and interaction is almost always better. This fact there was no dialogue in the Cave made the whole thing even more to the point and no fooling around.

Jonas - Jan 09, 2015 at 05:54
Because of a buggy computer I have been replaying parts of broken sword lately. But it hasen't been a big problem as with a good adventure game it takes a long time to figure out the solution. But when you know the solution all you need to do is a few click to pass each scene.

And it's possible to skip the voice acting if you have heard it already by just clicking.

One thing I appreciate about broken sword is that it's not so much walking-around game. Most puzzels can be solved within the scene and then move on which make replaying it not a huge problem. And it helps that it's wonderful witty voice acting which I often don't mind listen to multiple times.

Mike Pikowski - Jan 09, 2015 at 06:23
Hm, i really found the Cave Fun to play.

And played it exactly as you mentioned.

First completition with three Characters.
About 2-3 Weeks playing other Things, after this playing with 3 other Characters.
Now paused about several Months.
Havent seen the ending from the twins.
Only one suggestion, you should have made 8 Characters. So you can play the game at last with 2 new Storylines and one you´ve already seen. That would be 66% fun, instead of only 33% ;-)

Currently Playing MM again(from within my old DOTT CD) . Hard to remember what to do to finish the game :) But don´t reading the walkthrough :) After this i will try Zack again :)

Hope the new Game will be such Amazing as the old ones :)

Myrdivar - Jan 09, 2015 at 08:34
Maybe there was a different playing pace back then. A game lasted for a very long time compared with the game bombardment of today. Now it's more a play, check Internet if you're struck for too long then move to the next game.

Diduz - Jan 09, 2015 at 08:44
I think that's due to The Cave being simpler and more streamlined than Maniac Mansion. If the game is simpler, I beat it faster and I want to give it another try as soon as I can. Also, if the game is more streamlined, there aren't many extra activities to make the experience different enough on each playthrough. In Maniac Mansion, I could stumble on items that my chosen characters couldn't use, that was intriguing and strange. In The Cave, the areas which didn't link to my characters weren't accessible.
As someone said, The Cave could've been better if you got 6 or 9 characters, i.e. multiples of 3, the number of playable characters per playthrough.
But I don't think Thimbleweed Park will have selectable characters, so the two games seem different to me.
That said, The Cave is an underrated gem, and its flaws didn't really spoil my enjoyment.

Tytpol - Jan 09, 2015 at 08:57
Weird, people should know that's always better to get five games for the price of one.

Peter Campbell - Jan 09, 2015 at 09:15
Resident Evil 2 is a game that I feel did multiple endings/stories/scenarios perfectly.  Depending on whether you played ClaireA/LeonB or LeonA/ClaireB, you'd go through the same areas but in a different order, some of the puzzles would be new or have to be solved differently, enemy placement was different, and Leon and Claire's stories and encounters with other characters/bosses in the game were different too.   So really the two different sets of characters to play as made for what felt like four completely different playthroughs and you didn't quite know what to expect with each playthrough and you wanted to see the scenario's story all the way to the end.  

Resident Evil 1 on the other hand is a game where I love that it has two different characters with completely different playthroughs, but I hated having to get either the best ending, the good ending, the bad ending or the worst ending, it was just so monotonous and the playthrough was practically the same for the two different characters but you would just make 1 or 2 different choices throughout their games but it felt like you were just playing through the same game four times for each character with very slightly changes.

Jan - Jan 09, 2015 at 09:36
I have two words for you: Time machine.

LichiMan - Jan 09, 2015 at 10:27
... out of a DeLorean?

Peter Campbell - Jan 09, 2015 at 20:15
A hot tub =)

Sebastian Angermann - Jan 09, 2015 at 11:28
Hi Ron,
how about a Pulp-Fiction-Tarantino-like style of telling the story in the game?
(three stories about one story... ;-))

Tomimt - Jan 09, 2015 at 12:44
The biggest problem in Cave, which causes too much running around, is the limited invetory, not the fact that you have 7 characters. Too often you just run around the level in order to fetch some item you need, dropping another item off, just to return again to get the item you just dropped. That was just horrible mechanic.

Lance T Hildebrand - Jan 09, 2015 at 14:02
Ron, just make it like you want to make it. People who played the game probably had different expectations. People who play Thimbleweed Park should expect something more along the lines of Manic Mansion. If they don't... well... I don't know what to say to that.

As a backer, I backed the game because it's retro (and you're just grumpy cool).

Give me the multiple endings that require multiple play throughs (play... fuck it, I'm not going down that rabbit hole - Have you seen that thing! it's got huge sharp... it can leap about...), make it hard. In this day in age, I want (need?) that challenge.

Austin Storm - Jan 09, 2015 at 16:10
The Cave was awesome, I liked the repeat playthroughs. I didn't get as invested in the characters because of the omniscient narrator and lack of feeling like there was a strong single protagonist, but the game was a blast.

Christine - Jan 09, 2015 at 17:29
My husband asked me what games I liked to play. When I told him about this game I never finished he surprised me by finding Monkey Island on PS3. It's hard finding a game I will enjoy. My husband did his research again and purchased The Cave which I loved! I did take breaks as I was trying to make the enjoyment last longer. Death Spank was also a win for me. I think the key feature for both was first dialogue/narrator and second puzzles. I came here to see what you have been up to, read the comments to see what I should play next, and to tell you to keep up the good work!

Pajama Sam - Jan 09, 2015 at 18:00
One thing that I loved about the Pajama Sam games and other Humongous Entertainment games was that every play through was different. The puzzles were randomized in many of the games, so in one play through you might need to solve a puzzle in order to find a book in the library, but in the next play through, the book would either cease to exist, being replaced by a different puzzle, or the book would be found at a different location requiring a different means of obtaining it. I think that this could be a cool way to make each play through unique and also bring back a concept from some of Ron's previous games.

Soong - Jan 12, 2015 at 04:58
I love this idea!  It reminds me of how playing Monkey Island 2 on easy first made the hard playthrough even more difficult.  Knowing the solution to one of the easy puzzles made it harder to see clues for the new solution.  Having some randomized elements could be another twist on that and confuse players enough to make another playthrough more challenging.

Pikomi - Jan 10, 2015 at 03:31
After reading the comments and thinking about this topic here is my conclusion:

Please do multiple ways to play through the game. Please do different puzzles and meaningful finales for each combination of characters. It will be perfect for this detective genre! The man who gets bored easily, will play at least one cool Timbleweed Park storyline. The man who loves good detective stories (or who backed this project) will shurely play every storyline achieving all ideas, puzzles and endings.

PS. I loved The Cave, even if i got a tiny bit annoyed by the dynamite. The ideas where brilliant and i wanted to see everything (loving the twins and the rocket launch most for the cool atmosphere and ideas) so i played it 3 times on my iPad.

PSS. Monkey Island is my life! And luckily i am free of guilt after 25 years ;) Thank you Ron for your great work!!!

Pikomi - Jan 10, 2015 at 04:22
PPPS. Post Scriptum Scriptum... lol sorry.

Cerno - Jan 10, 2015 at 06:28
My 2 cents:

the main issue is that it's a different genre: adventure games are much faster to play through again than riddle based games, so i don't see a problem having repetition here as long as you have enough differences. just make sure you have unique dialogs when the riddles are the same. that should give enough freshness.

look at the beautiful machinarium. i don't like replaying it, because it is relatively slow and the mini games are a huge turn off for me. so even an adventure game can be hard to pick up under certain circumstances.
i think if you make dialogs and cut scenes skippable and allow skipping rooms (double click the exit will move immediately to the next room), there is no problem having duplicate content because it's easy to skip.

i had no problem replaying the awesome primordia to get all content and all the endings because it was easy to skip and so it was very hassle free.

Cerno - Jan 10, 2015 at 06:32
and i meant riddle based action games, which i assume the cave is (haven't played it yet)

Darkstorm - Jan 10, 2015 at 07:04
I agree with what others have said, the way maniac mansion handled things was perfect.  If that could be built on - more npc random actions, perhaps even ones that are affected by which character you have chosen to control would be great.  If different characters have to solve the same puzzle, then they'd have different dialogue (Although of course different solutions/paths are always welcome).

Perhaps also have a few unique "death" endings per character.  Obviously once these have shown they would take you back to the game a short while before you took the act that killed you (or failed to take the act that saved you).

Roberto Cano - Jan 10, 2015 at 08:07
My fifty cents: I would not mind to replay it once more, twice would be a little bit annoying if everything is the same (I've been playing games for 24 years now, if that counts). What about introducing slight differences in the play? On one hand you can save some puns for some replays, you can change some puzzles slightly (to make the omelet, the eggs this time are rotten, so I have to use some artificial egg substitute), and like in the cave you may have access to different sections on another replay. One idea (tricky, though) is to use temporal continuity. Everything you did last time remains: of you did unplugged the fridge to get the cord for other puzzle, second time everything in the fridge is rotten! (like the eggs, did I say I want eggs in the game? ostrich ones though). Anyway really looking forward to the game! I was one of the guys that finished all endings in the cave :)

Oliver - Jan 10, 2015 at 09:35
I think the different difficulties of monkey Island 2 made it really interesting.
First solve on easy, and after this a complete new experience playing on hard. So many things changed...

Andreas Nordvall - Jan 10, 2015 at 10:29
My first thought was just the very same most have commented here; Players are insanely forgiving for the slightest of variations. If anything, I think you actually have the potential for a richer experience if you allow the same characters to retread familiar territory but with different reactions. It opens up for the possibilities to explore their reactions which tells a lot about their personality. You might be curious as a player to revisit that one annoying puzzle that you ran into with the kindhearted and warm character, but with the cynical and snarky character to see what it would say.

I remember beating "The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker" for the first time and unlocked the second quest, which was essentially the exact same game except Link was wearing his pajamas. Everything was just the same, except all of the dialogue about Link's iconic green clothes (which most likely always refer to him fitting the role of the foretold, legendary hero) was suddenly swapped with people remarking about his shabby outfit. Same thing goes for Super Mario Galaxy, I KNEW you would unlock Luigi if you beat Mario's campaign 100%, so I just rushed through it because some part of me would rather play as Luigi than Mario. Same game. Completely the same. But I wanted Luigi. Sometimes the character and the players relationship to them is more important than the game. As long as the game in itself is free from tedious obstacles that might make you give a replay a second thought, I think most people (me at the very least) are curious about getting to know the protagonists and what they think about the environments you've already explored. The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask builds upon this concept to an insane amount. Not saying that's what it is all about, but a lot of enjoyment from that game comes from seeing what a person says to you differently when you're disguised as the mayor as opposed to dressed as a cow. It's fun and makes the world more alive and playful.

Replaying a game is fun and with a new character it's downright exciting and rewarding as long as the game (at least the recurring elements) are smooth enough to not make the player hesitate. Ever played Super Mario World, beat the Special World and unlocked the second playthrough where all of the Koopas suddenly wore masks of Mario? Yeah, I replayed that entire game just because of that. I was curious to see what other minor details had changed. It didn't matter, because the game was fun. On that not I also enjoyed Sonic Adventure, flawed as it is, but I loved the feature of each character having storylines that cross each other and the player having to retread the same territory. The game was a jumbled mess and broken as hell, but it was really fun to see how Tails would interact with a level as opposed to Sonic!

I've never played The Cave so I can't tell what might've worked or not worked in that game, but I'm fairly certain it wasn't the repetition.

As a matter of fact, I seem to recall loving the hell out of "Freddie Fish: The Case of the Missing Kelp Seeds" for the very reason that I could replay the game with subtle, minor changes to each round. ;)

Best of luck!

longuist - Jan 10, 2015 at 17:40
Please do NOT put too much randomness in it. (It's no RPG)
Replayed MI2 lately and the hectic ending sucked (not the ending itself of course)

To the problem of how to deal with different endings:
Another approach could be that one of the characters (in a team) has the ability to solve certain parts very fast (aka easy mode) so one can concentrate on the parts of the other characters. On a second thought thats not perfect. Screw that.
You have to sort it out yourself.
In the comments are lots of useful bits, a blend of it would be the best. So it will be different from MM, the Cave, IJ4 and so on, its a new game after all.
Choose wisely or the pack will let you walk the plank :)

Manoel - Jan 10, 2015 at 19:00
I for the "replay" there where two games on the Nintendo DS/Nintendo 3DS where the whole story is about going time and replay:

- 999 (,_Nine_Persons,_Nine_Doors )
- Virtue's Last Reward ( )

I don't want to explain the story as some people may want to play them, but on the first one (the story of both are linked) you had to replay all of the part you already played, to see all the ending, on the second one, the story is displayed as a graph and each node is a specific point in the story/decision you made, the whole story force you to use it multiple time, and it was used in a really interesting manner. I invite you to test, at least the later one to see own it was done.

And both games are some sort of escape room and are quite good, I strongly recommend them.

Zak Phoenix McKracken - Jan 10, 2015 at 19:20
I loved that games!!!

Gins - Jan 10, 2015 at 19:08
Some of my thoughts on the subject:

1) MULTIPLE SOLUTIONS. Don't only have multiple endings, but also have multiple solutions for the game along the way. That way, the fun in replaying the game for a new ending can come from trying to figure out which puzzles have alternate solutions and then solve them that way. Maybe have an improved and global point system like in the Indiana Jones games to show how many of the puzzles a player has solved.

2) TIME BASED EVENTS. Go the Maniac Mansion route, as has been mentioned by others, and have semi-random events that you might or might not stumble upon, making at least the first couple of playthroughs different each time. On the same note, include dialogs on the way where you can only pick one out of multiple options so replaying the game gives you the chance to try out these new dialogue options.

3) MULTIPLE ENDINGS FOR MULTIPLE PLAYERS. I see the value of multiple endings or differing playthroughs in the fact that different players can have different experiences. It may not necessarily be meant for one player to find all the endings. Multiple players are then encouraged to talk with each other about the stuff they experienced, like "Dude, did you know that if you do X on Y then Z happens?" "No! Good I got a savestate around that part of the game, so I'm gonna try it out!"

4) NO SKIPPING. Don't allow the skipping of entire game portions. If people want to do that, they'll just look up videos of these endings on YouTube anyway. Also, adventure games where each line can be skipped with the pressing of the . button serve themselves for speedrunning, so the player can handle the skipping themselves (combine this with point 1, and it might work out nicely)

5) NO ARTSYNESS. Don't do some artsy "oh that's not what really happened" thing after reaching an ending, unless there is only a single "good" ending. If there are multiple MEANINGFUL endings, then the norm shouldn't be that an ending gets "retconned" by the narrator. The situation of Guybrush's death in MI2 is different because it's a joke and actually DOES contradict with something that already happened (Guybrush living and telling Elaine the story).


6) HAVE ONLY A SINGLE GOOD/CANON ENDING. Just avoid multiple good endings altogether and have one ending with small differences such as what happened in Monkey Island 1 where the ending is always the same, but you can either save or abandon your crew or you can save or kill Bob.

7) MANIAC MANSION VS THE CAVE. If I recall correctly, Maniac Mansion does what I describe in my points 1 and 2. Multiple solutions to puzzles and situational puzzles. The Cave has only one solution to each puzzle (unless I'm mistaken). Also The Cave may be a good puzzle game but it's a boring platform game. I would have preferred The Cave much more if I could have the AI position a character in the level as if it were a strategy game. Maniac Mansion is a lot less cumbersome to navigate with the Point and Click interface.

Oh another thing about The Cave: Don't forget that you had the "cave paintings" in The Cave. So for me, the idea was: play with three characters, then play with the next three characters, and then play with the final character and two characters who I didn't find all cave paintings with for 100% completion. I thought you designed it that way deliberately, Ron.

I hope that this conveys my thoughts in an understandable way and was worth the read.

Andrea - Jan 11, 2015 at 05:59
You want to see a different ending? Then shut up and just replay what has to be replayed. That's how I see it.

Giulio - Jan 11, 2015 at 06:28
I'd prefer to see all endings without having to play the game over and over. It's something I never liked in Maniac Mansion. I just prefer things to be LINEAR. I didn't like having the choice to either sink the ship or not in MI1 because I just felt like sinking it made more sense and was much more hilarious. Talking about other LucasArts games I didn't like the different storyline options in Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis too. I'm not saying I want simple puzzles and there must be only one way to solve them, but I just don't like "plot branches" and different endings. Having different ways to solve complicated puzzles stimulates the player's fantasy and imagination.
Oh, and the worst thing of MM was dying and having to restart the game. That was SO frustrating. Horrible.
So I'd vote for option 1) or 2). Stick to the MI format please when coming to the storyline.
I like the idea of having multiple playable characters though, as in MM or Day Of The Tentacle!
Last thing, just to make it clear.... I JUST CAN'T WAIT FOR THIS GAME!

sal - Jan 11, 2015 at 07:15
we love the cave and still need to finish the last character ,still find it challenging.
make more , we`re waiting !!!

Zak Phoenix McKracken - Jan 11, 2015 at 08:26
Until the post on this blog, I didn't have heard about it (sorry, "mea culpa"). So, I purchased it on Steam and played, yesterday.
There is a bug, or maybe it looks like a BIG bug!
I played a lot, then I "Save & Exit". When I load the saved game, all the characters are in the starting position, out of the cave, with the crowbar resting on the ground.
So, I searched on the Internet, and found the Steam forum, and many other people had my same experience, users playing on Mac, Win 7, Win Vista...
The last post, dated February 2013, talked about a bug fix, with a patch release. Then, no more messages.

So... anyone had my same experience?
I tried to move the 3 files (*.sav) from the "numbered" folder to the parent folder, following a suggestion read on the Steam forum, but it didn't work.

Ron, it's normal? I don't think so!
Thank you

JohnnyW - Jan 11, 2015 at 11:27
I'd say make us repeat things. Yes, do it. Go on, it's fine. The bestest possible solution would be to have no repetition between characters -- sure, same scenes, but perhaps different puzzles... (Could that even be done?) But otherwise make us repeat. It's what we expected, after all.

I loved THE CAVE but it WAS a little annoying because it took three attempts to get 7 character's endings, forcing repetition of at least two characters. (If there had been six or nine characters, I'd wager there would have been less complaints.) Plus the Gold Cave level was annoying, as you say.

Just make the game world dense enough so that repetition doesn't feel so... repetitious. And try not to make a level where we have to walk extremely far, and back again.

Santar - Jan 11, 2015 at 18:58
I think it has to do with what sort of game The Cave was.
It felt more monotonous to wander through the same environments because all you did was just walking around from puzzle to puzzle.
In a point n click adventure game the world is more lively and there's a lot more stuff you can do to add some variety to your playthrough. Look at and try random stuff, talk to people etc.

I say don't worry about players having to replay the game, after all we adventure fans are used to it :)

Johannes - Jan 12, 2015 at 03:15
Personally, I don't care if I have to play the game more than once to get all endings. That's part of the beauty of the concept. I love how it was done in MM, and also the different solution paths in INDY4 was great.

Johannes - Jan 12, 2015 at 03:15
Personally, I don't care if I have to play the game more than once to get all endings. That's part of the beauty of the concept. I love how it was done in MM, and also the different solution paths in INDY4 was great.

syn - Jan 12, 2015 at 07:18
just my thoughts on this question. i am now 35 years old, in the days back until today i never played a game twice. There are always so much games out there so i cant do this (the one exception is Monkey Island 1 and 2, but them i played again because they felt "sooooooooooo" good to me). I never played a game so far which forced me so much that i really thought "holly crap" i have to play it again... And in regards to your question about the cave, i dont liked the game much... the jumping and time-stop elements have broken the game for me... But this not means its a bad game - gamers change, game changes, and playin always the same is boring too ;-) i look forward seeing and playing your new game! Thank you (sry for my tasty bad english ;-)

Jaybee - Jan 12, 2015 at 09:07
More video games are coming out today than ever before and they demand more of your time than most games from the 80s or 90s. After finishing it once you could get through Maniac Mansion in 60 minutes. The Cave is at least double that even when you know what you're doing. And you're asking us to do it 3 more times to finish the game?

Time is at a premium when so many games are hitting the market. Most people are playing a game once, if at all. Going by achievements, maybe 1/4 of the players even reached the end for one set of characters. Most people beat a game once, shelve it, and watch the rest on youtube where they can get the same story without any of the time required.

This isn't a bad thing! Modern gamers aren't lazier or uncaring, please don't make assumptions like Roberta Williams about how PC gamers in the 80s were richer and had access to less distractions so they could fully consume a game or whatever. It just means you need to grab your audience from the very beginning and give them compelling reasons to see everything. And that largely comes through gameplay. Repetition is a killer especially if the player isn't seeing anything new.

Pumbaa - Jan 12, 2015 at 15:07
Can you please add time and date to comments on this forum? It's hard to follow :)

Janski - Jan 12, 2015 at 15:23
Me being too lazy to read all 130 comments through, I'm sorry if I address something that has already been here 10 times over.

I sort of have to agree with Jaybee right above. Gaming and gamers have changed a lot since you did Maniac Mansion, most significantly their mindset of dealing with the elements of being stuck or having to repeat something they already did. Time is of the essence, measured in money, even. and while I argue that this doesn't mean that you have to compromise to doing easier puzzles, people are a lot more impatient in seeking to get forward than, say, I was when playing the likes of Full Throttle or The Dig in the mid 90s. Could take days to figure out a single puzzle, and I was okay with it. I wouldn't be anymore. Maybe it has something to do with not being a kid anymore, and having other responsabilities in life, but I don't quite think so. I mean, how fast would you surf away from a website these days that loaded in dial-up speeds, a minute or two? Somebody posted the rest of the story as a Youtube-video anyway, so you might as well throw your game out of the window and have a Voodoo Lady put a juju on you. Ron.

What I'm saying is that even in difficult games you have to give the players some reason not to say, "f**k it" right away. And you can't make them do things over and over. If you're planning on putting some Maniac Mansion style dead ends there, you should at least notify people when they are about to enter no-progress state. Maybe even introduce autosave functionality often enough that if you do, you won't have to rely on your own saves possibly from rooms and rooms away? Like, even in Full Throttle there's only one puzzle to die in, and if you do, you just repeat the same scene.
2016 is not the time to be pissing off your gamers with dead ends or having to run through an hour of what you've already solved in succession. If you do, people just move on to the next game. Might take some fun away from the way the games were in the 80s, but I'm telling you: frustration is a killer.

Steffen - Jan 13, 2015 at 01:20
A good game would never make me bored. I played the Monkey Islands numberless times in the run of the last decades without getting bored and despite no different endings. I think it is ok giving different characters different endings and see the different endings only by playing through several times.

Doug - Jan 13, 2015 at 17:26
The repeated parts of The Cave felt very self-contained; once you have solved them there isn't a lot of variety to the level.  The level was solved exactly the same, with the same story being told while you were solving it.  It felt like an active waiting room -- go through the motions since you have learned that nothing new will happen.  

This was made worse when you transitioned between levels; you never knew if the level was going to be new or a repeat.

Having to do the same things over isn't the worst; rather, repeating a whole subplot before you could continue when you were interested in something new felt a bit tedious.

Also, could lead to falling through the floor.  :p.

Zak Phoenix McKracken - Jan 14, 2015 at 13:04
[Off Topic]
Wow, thanks to this topic, I discovered and purchased "The Cave".
It's very funny, the footprint of Ron Gilbert it's present everywhere :-)
Now I am in the Luna Park. I resolved 4 out of 5 games. The only one left is "guess the weigth"... I still can't figure out how to cheat the cheater :-D But I'm sure there is a logic inside...
Think, Zak, think!
[/Off Topic]

Christian - Jan 18, 2015 at 03:45
Please make it so that if I want to do a second playthrough I can press "." to skip dialogue lines after I have quickly read them (means skipping mainly the voice acting), but make it so that one can still read everything. I think in the TellTale Sam'n'Max games "." or mouse click skipped a recorded line, but the recorded line had multiple subtitle lines that showed while that recorded line was playing. And you could only skip the recorded line (not the subtitle line) and after reading the first subtitle line, skipping made you miss the second or third subtitle line if there was one and I was never sure if I had to wait to read it all or if I could skip over the repetitive things I already knew.

The cave was awesome!

Zak Phoenix McKracken - Jan 18, 2015 at 07:18
It's like "999" or "Virtue's Last Reward", where you keep pressed a key to fast forward all the dialogs already seen, then automatically the game stops at the first unseen point.
I found it very useful.

Ron Gilbert - Jan 18, 2015 at 11:37
Yes, you will be able to skip ALL dialog using the '.', including the voice. I'm equally annoyed by not being able to do that in games.

longuist - Jan 26, 2015 at 04:56
Maybe you could add an option to skip dialog with a mouse button too. (ie right click). Emphasis on option, because at times its annoing to skip something when you accidentally hit a mouse button. Its just for the case when the keyboard is out of reach.

Matthew - Feb 01, 2015 at 08:21
On the goldmine, I always just kept the knight around, and would use his ability to "fall" down the ladders, to hurry things up.

Jason - Feb 26, 2015 at 06:34
The cave was the game of the year for me. I replayed after taking a break, the repetition didn't bother me. My children positively embraced the repetition and replayed the game to discover all outcomes and stories.........I've not seen that with any other game, it reminded me of how we played games when I was a kid.
If there is an audience for this game outside of the backers then I don't think repeating the story, similar to the cave, would be a problem. For kids its a plus.

Jason - Feb 26, 2015 at 06:34
The cave was the game of the year for me. I replayed after taking a break, the repetition didn't bother me. My children positively embraced the repetition and replayed the game to discover all outcomes and stories.........I've not seen that with any other game, it reminded me of how we played games when I was a kid.
If there is an audience for this game outside of the backers then I don't think repeating the story, similar to the cave, would be a problem. For kids its a plus.