Thimbleweed Park Podcast #12

by Ron Gilbert
Jul 03, 2015

A very special 4th of July episode.

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- Ron

Dominik - Jul 04, 2015 at 00:08
Great insights about keeping the game on track/budget and cutting in this one!

Would it be possible to have a blog entry about "harmonizing" the graphical Style of fore and Background graphics? Because that really Sounds like an interesting problem!

Looking forward to hearing Mark and seeing more of his work, too.

All in all a really great podcast today!

@David: Good call with the Bulletin-Board! I think if I see a closeup to pick stuff from the board I wouldn't also try to interact with it in the far view later on.

Dominik - Jul 04, 2015 at 00:39
Regarding the Bulletin-Board:
In Indy 4 there was a Puzzle where you needed to repair the mechanism. It would show a closeup an you saw the area where you could pickup und arrange cogs and other Parts. Next to this was Kind of an offscreen area where you saw your inventory items that could be grrab and dragged onto the "working area".

It is basically the same thing as yours just with cogs instead of notes and a mechanism area instead of a board.

I found the solution in Indy 4 adequate but not ideal - but perhaps this helps you guys to solve the problem?!

Mikee - Jul 04, 2015 at 00:55
I LOVE it, Mark will be on next week, but you ave to check with him :)

Natalija - Jul 04, 2015 at 03:13
Awwww poor little doggy.. That mean Ron didn't take you for a walk...  What are you waiting for,Ron? Pixel needs walk!

Zuckerberg - Jul 04, 2015 at 09:27
You guys talking about scheduling so much this time reminded me of asking:
Could you post a screenshot or two of Ron's bug-tracker Gary was praising so much in one of the first Podcasts? It'd be interesting to see the "look" of a piece of software (vs. bugzilla, github's, RT) that's so central to the process, and one you probably stare at a lot. (Of course feel free to blur stuff.)

Zuckerberg - Jul 04, 2015 at 09:47
Regarding cutting rooms: What about leaving some of them in, as they probably are, as "wireframes", really blocky and undone - as sort of "uncharted land", or an easter egg, where the game would get a little meta-referential and self-conscious of the game as construction, similar to breaking the fourth wall in theatre? I dimly remember that some people dug up unused rooms from LFG games with "SCUMM explorer" software. Having a bit of that notion in, intentionally, would bring this "marvelling" to a broader audience.
BTW, will TWP have an option to switch between "wireframes" and "final" graphics, similar to MI Special Edition where you can switch back to classic graphics?

Paulup - Jul 04, 2015 at 10:46
There could be a tree stump somewhere where you put your head down it and your head pops out of something in a wireframe room, and then the character makes a witty comment about the room not looking finished, etc.

Paulup - Jul 04, 2015 at 10:53
I always wondered - did you guys ever play many of the competitors' adventure games?

I imagine you would have got a kick out of some of the Space Quest games, as they were also very funny and had lots of good sci-fi references and also Simon the Sorcerer 1 & 2, which used the same verb system as LucasArts and had lots of funny fantasy references...

Ron Gilbert - Jul 04, 2015 at 11:13
Yeah, I played all of them. Sometimes for fun (SpaceQuest, Larry) and sometimes just to keep up with what the competition was doing. It still do that today.

Mattias Cedervall - Jul 04, 2015 at 11:48
Gary, Mark, Ron and David, have you ever considered creating your own graphics tool? It could be like Dpaint but upgraded and then you could sell a license to other game developers in need of a great tool.

Ron, please tell your lovely dog (Lassie?) that I said mjaumjau.

mjau - Jul 04, 2015 at 16:29
You kind of summoned me there, so i feel compelled to reply. Anyway, creating something like Deluxe Paint is actually a lot of work, especially if you want it to be presentable to the general public. Even more if you want people to pay money for it. I can't speak for Ron & co, but i think their time is better spent making games. They're good at that.

mjau - Jul 07, 2015 at 10:05
I don't want to discourage anyone from making their own editor (or game) if they want to, my point was more that making a good editor is a big project and when you have limited resources you kind of have to pick your battles (or spend ages on it as a side project :p)

Arto - Jul 04, 2015 at 16:01

Tomas - Jul 05, 2015 at 05:43
Regarding dialogs. My favorite dialog in MI2 was probably the one with the fisherman. A lot of dialog most of which was pretty much meaningless, but I enjoyed it immensely (where DID that second pipe come from?). Obviously not something you want to do with every character though.

Andrew Bryan - Jul 05, 2015 at 09:17
How about this for a fun idea: a small group of backers with the phonebook/voicemail option could organize among themselves some kind of mini-puzzle that makes use of their phonebook entries and messages (via riddles etc). If it was planned offline, it could be a secret even for Ron and the team to solve too. Our game in their game... as a thank you from the backers.

I have some ideas how this could work if there is any interest...

Mattias Cedervall - Jul 05, 2015 at 10:38
I think that's a terrific idea! I missed their Kickstarter campaign unfortunately, but even if I didn't I would never be able to decide what kind of voicemail message I would record.