Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Which feelies are _needed_?

Last response: in Video Games
Share
Anonymous
March 21, 2005 12:22:24 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

I was pondeing feelies last night.. what their purpose was and how
they worked in with the games. (Another not-enough-sleep meandering post,
sorry about that :) 

ie: To this day we still play a lot of Infocom classics (as well
as others like Magnetic Scrolls etc at least in my case :)  despite their
age, as well as the Comp works etc.

I'm not sure which companies included feelies.. certainly Infocom
and Magnetic Scrolls, but what about Level 9? Scott Adams Adventure
International didn't if memory serves.

Feelies were always fun of course, but I wonder now how many were
used as copy protection or information versus just niftyness; the peril
sensitive sunglasses and miniature space fleet add to the sumersion and
sense of odd fun that HHGttG is but weren't required. Back in the day
games often had word lookups in manuals but I'm not sure if IF ever did
that.

Magnetic Scrolls stuff always (most?) had novellas with the game,
such as in The Pawn, to get you into the world and its history; I think
Guild of Thieves had a small newspaper sort of manual, which also included
a system to get hints. Infocom games often included fragments of maps.

I never trusted map fragments - always assumed they would be
misleading or incomplete, but as a result I don't kow if they are complete
or misleading :) 

In the archives someone mentioned an Infocom game (which was it..
Moonmist?) where much of the room descriptions were omitted and you have
to page through a manual for them; certainly that is copy protection as
no fun can be had there (harkens back to Temple of Apshai days..)

Anyway, my questions come down to...

Which games *required* feelies? ie: The feelies had valuable or
essential hint material, making the game difficult or impossible nowadays
unless you've got the manual or a scan thereof.

Is there a comprehensive game list which had feelies and what they
are? ie: Infocom is fairly well covered (theres one lads website where hes
got all the feelies online for perusal at least). The Magnetic Scrolls
Memorial has a fair pile of those materials online. Anything missing? I
suppose if whichever-Infocom-game-it-was-needing-a-manual goes totally
outr of print there'll be someone willing to scan it, but thats a shame
for sure.

jeff

--
--
"Have you played Atari today?"

More about : feelies needed

Anonymous
March 21, 2005 12:22:25 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

Jeff Mitchell wrote:
>
> Which games *required* feelies? ie: The feelies had valuable or
> essential hint material, making the game difficult or impossible
nowadays
> unless you've got the manual or a scan thereof.
>

I think Suspended would have been unplayable without the map and little
pieces. (It was pretty unplayable even with them.)

> --
> "Have you played Atari today?"

Not quite that recently, but the Tank Section of Combat is still the
best two-player game I've ever played.

Home*

(dotheearthatgmaildotcom)
Anonymous
March 21, 2005 5:47:44 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

"Homestar" <Dotheearth@yahoo.com> writes:

> > Which games *required* feelies? ie: The feelies had valuable or
> > essential hint material, making the game difficult or impossible
> nowadays
> > unless you've got the manual or a scan thereof.
>
> I think Suspended would have been unplayable without the map and little
> pieces. (It was pretty unplayable even with them.)

I've often thought about making a PDA based mapping tool, but
games like this would certainly make it challenging to be useful.

> > "Have you played Atari today?"
>
> Not quite that recently, but the Tank Section of Combat is still the
> best two-player game I've ever played.

*g* Try Space Duel (colour vector). Combat+Asteroids+Steroids.

jeff

--
--
"Have you played Atari today?"
Related resources
March 21, 2005 6:15:53 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

On or about 3/21/2005 8:22 AM, Jeff Mitchell did proclaim:
> I was pondeing feelies last night.. what their purpose was and how
> they worked in with the games. (Another not-enough-sleep meandering post,
> sorry about that :) 
[...]
> I never trusted map fragments - always assumed they would be
> misleading or incomplete, but as a result I don't kow if they are complete
> or misleading :) 
[...]
> Which games *required* feelies? ie: The feelies had valuable or
> essential hint material, making the game difficult or impossible nowadays
> unless you've got the manual or a scan thereof.

IIRC, Leather Goddesses of Phobos had a map feelie that took you through
a maze. Without the map, it was pretty difficult; every wrong turn led
you to insta-death.
Anonymous
March 21, 2005 7:06:51 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

On Mon, 21 Mar 2005 14:22:24 GMT, Jeff Mitchell scrawled:

> I was pondeing feelies last night.. what their purpose was and how
> they worked in with the games. (Another not-enough-sleep meandering
> post, sorry about that :) 
>

I remember playing one of the graphical zork games, Nemesis - I think it
was - it required a set of codes from the inside cover of one of the
books. It was in such a non-obvious location that I trudged through the
game for hours trying to find some ingame clue. I don't mind when feelies
come with a game, but I find no real excuse why the should be 100%
necessary and that the information/clues presented therein do not find
their presence ingame. It's wholly unfair in those cases.

--
http://www.rexx.co.uk

To email me, visit the site.
Anonymous
March 21, 2005 7:06:52 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

"Rexx Magnus" <trashcan@uk2.net> wrote in message
news:Xns9620A3F0A284Drexxdeansaund@130.133.1.4...
> On Mon, 21 Mar 2005 14:22:24 GMT, Jeff Mitchell scrawled:
>
> > I was pondeing feelies last night.. what their purpose was and how
> > they worked in with the games. (Another not-enough-sleep meandering
> > post, sorry about that :) 
> >
>
> I remember playing one of the graphical zork games, Nemesis - I think it
> was - it required a set of codes from the inside cover of one of the
> books. It was in such a non-obvious location that I trudged through the
> game for hours trying to find some ingame clue. I don't mind when feelies
> come with a game, but I find no real excuse why the should be 100%
> necessary and that the information/clues presented therein do not find
> their presence ingame. It's wholly unfair in those cases.
>
Actually that code was also to be found in the game itself.
Anonymous
March 21, 2005 9:10:47 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

In article <86vf7l9izj.fsf@fw.skeleton.org>,
Jeff Mitchell <skeezix@fw.skeleton.org> wrote:
>
> Feelies were always fun of course, but I wonder now how many were
>used as copy protection or information versus just niftyness; the peril
>sensitive sunglasses and miniature space fleet add to the sumersion and
>sense of odd fun that HHGttG is but weren't required. Back in the day
>games often had word lookups in manuals but I'm not sure if IF ever did
>that.
>
Infocom did frequently, particularly later on. Let's go through the 20
in the Lost Treasures of Infocom and see:

Zork I, Zork II, Zork III: none that I know of
Beyond Zork: there are instructions on how to deal with various
monsters in the descriptions in the feelies
Enchanter: Not that I remember
Sorcerer: The infotater is necessary to get the combination of (IIRC)
trunk in the cellar.
Spellbreaker: You need information from the trading cards included at
one point in the game.
Deadline, Witness, Suspect: Don't remember
Lurking Horror: You can't get far into the game without logging in,
and your user name and password are in the feelies.
Ballyhoo: There is information in the feelies that you're going to need,
such as some circus lingo and an advertisement.
Infidel: Don't remember.
Moonmist: Don't remember, but IIRC the room descriptions were incomplete.
Starcross: You need a destination at the start of the game, meaning you
need to look something up on the map provided.
Suspended: Unique way of interacting with the game by means of robots,
and map.
Planetfall: Don't remember
Stationfall: Wasn't there a destination you needed to read?
HHGG: Don't remember
Zork Zero: There was an item with very important background information.

So, lots.

--
David H. Thornley | If you want my opinion, ask.
david@thornley.net | If you don't, flee.
http://www.thornley.net/~thornley/david/ | O-
Anonymous
March 21, 2005 9:10:48 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

thornley@visi.com (David Thornley) writes:

> In article <86vf7l9izj.fsf@fw.skeleton.org>,
> Jeff Mitchell <skeezix@fw.skeleton.org> wrote:
> >
> > Feelies were always fun of course, but I wonder now how many were
> >used as copy protection or information versus just niftyness; the peril
> >sensitive sunglasses and miniature space fleet add to the sumersion and
> >sense of odd fun that HHGttG is but weren't required. Back in the day
> >games often had word lookups in manuals but I'm not sure if IF ever did
> >that.
> >
> Infocom did frequently, particularly later on. Let's go through the 20
> in the Lost Treasures of Infocom and see:

There is a lot here in your list; rather disheartening in the sense
these aren't just "pick up and play" then. (ie: I've got the Masterpieces,
so just copy all the DAT files over to my phone and fiddle with the games
there. Obviously one must be wary which ones are usable in this way.. running
into a roadblock while on the road somewhere would be most annoying :)  I
suppose there must be a PDF on the CD with scans but I've not looked that far
in years :) 

> Sorcerer: The infotater is necessary to get the combination of (IIRC)
> trunk in the cellar.

Gah!

> Spellbreaker: You need information from the trading cards included at
> one point in the game.

Gah!

> Deadline, Witness, Suspect: Don't remember

These are the ones I'd expect .. ie: Detective genre, so why not
have the player dig through some goodies. Seams almost needed :) 

> Lurking Horror: You can't get far into the game without logging in,
> and your user name and password are in the feelies.

Gah!

> Ballyhoo: There is information in the feelies that you're going to need,
> such as some circus lingo and an advertisement.

Gah!

> Moonmist: Don't remember, but IIRC the room descriptions were incomplete.

I think it was meant to be unplayable without the manual. Given
reliance on text, this is almost criminal.. I'd have returned it back in the
day.

> Starcross: You need a destination at the start of the game, meaning you
> need to look something up on the map provided.

Gah!

> Suspended: Unique way of interacting with the game by means of robots,
> and map.

Is the map needed? Fiddling with Poet is cute :) 

> Planetfall: Don't remember

I hope not.. I'm part way through on my phone ;) 

> Stationfall: Wasn't there a destination you needed to read?

Gah!

> HHGG: Don't remember

Don't think so; I've nearly completed this (I think).

> Zork Zero: There was an item with very important background information.

Gah!

> So, lots.

Sounds like a minefield .. almost half should be avoided unless
you're certain you've got everything handy. Wow.

jeff

--
--
"Have you played Atari today?"
Anonymous
March 21, 2005 9:10:48 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

On Mon, 21 Mar 2005, David Thornley wrote:

> Infocom did frequently, particularly later on. Let's go through the 20
> in the Lost Treasures of Infocom and see:
>
> Infidel: Don't remember.

I'm pretty sure that the feelies told you where to dig. It's been decades
since I've played though.

==--- --=--=-- ---==
Quintin Stone "You speak of necessary evil? One of those necessities
stone@rps.net is that if innocents must suffer, the guilty must suffer
www.rps.net more." - Mackenzie Calhoun, "Once Burned" by Peter David
Anonymous
March 21, 2005 9:10:49 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

Jeff Mitchell wrote:

>>Moonmist: Don't remember, but IIRC the room descriptions were incomplete.
>
>
> I think it was meant to be unplayable without the manual. Given
> reliance on text, this is almost criminal.. I'd have returned it back in the
> day.
>

For what it's worth, I don't get the impression that copy protection was
the principle reason behind this. Infocom was trying to pack a very
complex game -- remember, there were four completely different story
lines to play depending on the color you chose at the beginning -- into
the very restrictive version 3 format. I kind of suspect that the room
descriptions were left out because there simply wasn't room for them.

Not that sticking the room descriptions in the manual was a particularly
good solution... but then again, Moonmist wasn't a particularly good
game, at least by Infocom standards.

Jimmy
March 21, 2005 9:10:49 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

I am not sure, but I think that the checks were removed for the
masterpieces collection for the most part. I could be wrong about this
however, but someone will correct me if that is indeed the case :) 

Steve
Anonymous
March 21, 2005 9:16:41 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

David Thornley wrote:
> In article <86vf7l9izj.fsf@fw.skeleton.org>,
> Jeff Mitchell <skeezix@fw.skeleton.org> wrote:
> >games often had word lookups in manuals but I'm not sure if IF ever
did
> >that.

> Infocom did frequently, particularly later on. Let's go through the
> 20 in the Lost Treasures of Infocom and see:
>
> (Lists those games)

You can add on:

AMFV, which had a code-wheel that you had to use several times,
although in later releases, they just stuck a grid in the back of the
manual;

King Arthur had a bit where you were behind an arras and had to recite
a line of a poem that was in the back of the manual.

I've always hated this kind of copyright protection in games. The
developers have a right to guard their game against piracy, but not to
the extent that it spoils the players enjoyment. The wheel in AMFV was
colour coded, which was a bitch if you were (even partially)
colour-blind.

EA's Hound of Shadow was the worst I can remember, where every now and
then a character would come up top you and ask when the next train from
X to Y was. Then the manual was full of all these horrible timetables
in tiny typeface that you'd have to go poking through.

Home*

(dotheearthatgmaildottcom)
Anonymous
March 22, 2005 12:26:04 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

In article <JyB%d.1754$yq2.323@newssvr12.news.prodigy.com>,
samwyse <dejanews@email.com> wrote:
>IIRC, Leather Goddesses of Phobos had a map feelie that took you through
>a maze. Without the map, it was pretty difficult; every wrong turn led
>you to insta-death.

I don't remember that map feelie, although it was a long time ago that
I played it. I do remember there was a comic book feelie that had
essential instructions on what to do in that maze -- you had to type
"clap" every five turns and "stomp" every seven, or something like
that (and you had to watch out for multiples of 35!) and if you didn't
then you suffered an insta-death. And there was no way to know that
without reading the comic.

--
David Goldfarb | "Hey, mister -- your ninja's dragging!"
goldfarb@ocf.berkeley.edu |
goldfarb@csua.berkeley.edu | -- MST3K, "Master Ninja I"
Anonymous
March 22, 2005 1:39:48 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

Jeff Mitchell wrote:
> There is a lot here in your list; rather disheartening in the sense
> these aren't just "pick up and play" then. (ie: I've got the Masterpieces,
> so just copy all the DAT files over to my phone and fiddle with the games
> there. Obviously one must be wary which ones are usable in this way.. running
> into a roadblock while on the road somewhere would be most annoying :)  I
> suppose there must be a PDF on the CD with scans but I've not looked that far
> in years :) 

http://infodoc.plover.net/ has PDF copies of just about all the
infocom manuals (aside from Shogun and Hitchhikers'), and the PDFs
include the feelies.
Anonymous
March 22, 2005 2:59:50 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

In article <d1ne5c$1h0g$1@agate.berkeley.edu>,
David Goldfarb <goldfarb@OCF.Berkeley.EDU> wrote:
>In article <JyB%d.1754$yq2.323@newssvr12.news.prodigy.com>,
>samwyse <dejanews@email.com> wrote:
>> IIRC, Leather Goddesses of Phobos had a map feelie that took you through
>> a maze. Without the map, it was pretty difficult; every wrong turn led
>> you to insta-death.
>
> I don't remember that map feelie, although it was a long time ago that
> I played it. I do remember there was a comic book feelie that had
> essential instructions on what to do in that maze -- you had to type
> "clap" every five turns and "stomp" every seven, or something like
> that (and you had to watch out for multiples of 35!) and if you didn't
> then you suffered an insta-death. And there was no way to know that
> without reading the comic.

I believe it was every five and nine turns, and the commands were
'clap' and 'hop'. There was also 'say "kweepa"', but I can't
remember exactly when that was needed.

Cheers,
Geoff.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Geoff Bailey (Fred the Wonder Worm) | Programmer by trade --
ftww@maths.usyd.edu.au | Gameplayer by vocation.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Anonymous
March 22, 2005 6:35:54 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

In article <1111457801.709563.106770@o13g2000cwo.googlegroups.com>,
Homestar <Dotheearth@yahoo.com> wrote:
>
>You can add on:
>
>AMFV, which had a code-wheel that you had to use several times,
>although in later releases, they just stuck a grid in the back of the
>manual;
>
*That* was a pain, wondering which of those colors was which. The
grid worked *much* better.

You really can't print stuff like that and have the colors be readily
identifiable. Heck, the colors can change during the print run.

>King Arthur had a bit where you were behind an arras and had to recite
>a line of a poem that was in the back of the manual.
>
There were tide tables in Sherlock, and you had to read the transcript
to realize one fact that's absolutely vital at the very end of the game.
Activision didn't reproduce this part of the transcript.

>I've always hated this kind of copyright protection in games. The
>developers have a right to guard their game against piracy, but not to
>the extent that it spoils the players enjoyment. The wheel in AMFV was
>colour coded, which was a bitch if you were (even partially)
>colour-blind.
>
The AMFV wheel was bad, and I'm not color-blind. Some of the
digging-around stuff was fun.


--
David H. Thornley | If you want my opinion, ask.
david@thornley.net | If you don't, flee.
http://www.thornley.net/~thornley/david/ | O-
Anonymous
March 22, 2005 11:51:54 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

On Mon, 21 Mar 2005 18:10:47 +0000, David Thornley said to the parser:

> Infocom did frequently, particularly later on. Let's go through the 20 in
> the Lost Treasures of Infocom and see:
>
> ...
> Ballyhoo: There is information in the feelies that you're going to need,
> such as some circus lingo and an advertisement.

You specifically need the ticket as well. I can imagine that trying to
figure out what to do with the ticket if you haven't seen the feelie would
be quite difficult.

> Stationfall: Wasn't there a destination you needed to read?

In order to successfully navigate the space truck at the beginning of the
game, you needed the list of chart destinations.


Michael
Anonymous
March 22, 2005 3:48:04 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

Quintin Stone <stone@rps.net> writes:

> On Mon, 21 Mar 2005, David Thornley wrote:
>
> > Infocom did frequently, particularly later on. Let's go through the 20
> > in the Lost Treasures of Infocom and see:
> >
> > Infidel: Don't remember.
>
> I'm pretty sure that the feelies told you where to dig. It's been decades
> since I've played though.

Yes, you need the map for the coordinates of the pyramid.

--
Esa Peuha
student of mathematics at the University of Helsinki
http://www.helsinki.fi/~peuha/
Anonymous
March 22, 2005 3:55:51 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

Jimmy Maher <maherNO@SPAMgrandecom.net> writes:

> For what it's worth, I don't get the impression that copy protection was
> the principle reason behind this. Infocom was trying to pack a very
> complex game -- remember, there were four completely different story
> lines to play depending on the color you chose at the beginning -- into
> the very restrictive version 3 format. I kind of suspect that the room
> descriptions were left out because there simply wasn't room for them.

If that had been their only concern, they wouldn't have hidden certain
significant objects; the game file is actually larger because (for
example) the umbrella stand isn't mentioned before you take it. Copy
protection is the only reason for that.

--
Esa Peuha
student of mathematics at the University of Helsinki
http://www.helsinki.fi/~peuha/
Anonymous
March 22, 2005 7:41:29 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

Jeff Mitchell come on down:

>> > "Have you played Atari today?"
>>
>> Not quite that recently, but the Tank Section of Combat is still the
>> best two-player game I've ever played.
>
> *g* Try Space Duel (colour vector). Combat+Asteroids+Steroids.

Biplane for the Intellivision!
Anonymous
March 28, 2005 4:29:27 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

You can add to the Infocom copy-protection list these.

Cutthroats requires you to have the book on ship wrecks as well as the tide tables. Border Zone requires you to have the
Frobnian phrase guide. As stated before, Moonmist was actually more fun to read about in the documentation than to play. It
was by far Infocom's worst game. Oh yes, the original version of Wishbringer required that you have the envelope and Legend
of Wishbringer, but both were implemented within the Solid Gold version. The Solid Gold release of LGOP had a cheat command
to bypass the maze, which for me as a blind player, was a blessed relief. Nord and Bert was probably the least dependent on
its documentation of the later games. A quick read of the sample transcript can give the player some ideas, but with its
built-in hints, you really don't need the manual. All the transcripts are on the if-archive, which is good, as they all
provide clues to some of the unusual interactions in each game.
Anonymous
March 28, 2005 3:35:32 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

Adam Myrow <amyrow@dell.midsouth.rr.com> writes:

> You can add to the Infocom copy-protection list these.
>
> Cutthroats requires you to have the book on ship wrecks as well as the tide tables. Border Zone requires you to have the
> Frobnian phrase guide. As stated before, Moonmist was actually more fun to read about in the documentation than to play. It
> was by far Infocom's worst game. Oh yes, the original version of Wishbringer required that you have the envelope and Legend
> of Wishbringer, but both were implemented within the Solid Gold version. The Solid Gold release of LGOP had a cheat command
> to bypass the maze, which for me as a blind player, was a blessed relief. Nord and Bert was probably the least dependent on
> its documentation of the later games. A quick read of the sample transcript can give the player some ideas, but with its
> built-in hints, you really don't need the manual. All the transcripts are on the if-archive, which is good, as they all
> provide clues to some of the unusual interactions in each game.

Someone could always hack Moonmist perhaps; disassemble the game,
enter in the full room descriptions, reassemble it. Wouldn't be distributable
of course, but maybe it'd be okay with the text restored. (Or was the
game designed to be played manual-in-hand all along? I can't imagine it
was, since the author would've hung himself :) 

jeff

--
--
"Have you played Atari today?"
Anonymous
March 30, 2005 3:24:45 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.int-fiction (More info?)

Jeff Mitchell <skeezix@fw.skeleton.org> wrote:
> Someone could always hack Moonmist perhaps; disassemble the game,
> enter in the full room descriptions, reassemble it. Wouldn't be distributable
> of course, but maybe it'd be okay with the text restored. (Or was the
> game designed to be played manual-in-hand all along? I can't imagine it
> was, since the author would've hung himself :) 

What we mean by lack of room descriptions is that, it repeatedly says that such and such "looks even lovelier than it sounds
in the tourist brochure." This phrase is in a large number of room and object descriptions. The tourist brochure is part of
the packaging. It is reproduced in the PDF on the Masterpieces CD, like most of the other stuff, but it is really annoying to
get that phrase over and over. It's as if the game was more interested in making sure that the user wasn't a software pirate
than it was in creating a quality game. Infocom is so famous for putting vital clues in the documentation, that in the (IMHO
highly under-rated) 2000 competition entry Guess The Verb, there is a funny parody of it. In the "scrutinize" section of that
game, examining the coffee machine gives a long message about how people who pirated this game would never get past this point
because they didn't have the documentation. Of course, the game is freeware, so that's what makes it so funny. It also mocks
the ending of Enchanter for requiring learning by dying.
!