Tag Archives: Leisure Suit Larry

In the Land of the Lost Genre

Hey, you! My name is Hazel and I am about to embark on the considerably long journey of creating old skool point and click adventure games. I remember when I played my first adventure title back in ’92, the text controlled EGA version of Leisure Suit Larry that a classmate “copied” for me on a green mini floppy disk. I got home, slipped the disk in my 286 desktop, and was duly bedazzled by the game’s opening sequence:

I swear I remember clapping softly and smiling from ear to ear because even the age quiz excited me. The game mechanics were the first of its kind that I had experienced, and I thought, “What technological breakthrough! How did they make such an intelligent game?! Oh my God, computers will soon take over the world…”

In ’96, a college friend lost my Star Wars disc, one that came with my brand spankin’ new, SoundBlaster-equipped 486 supercompter. To make up for it, he handed me the best game, he claimed, he’s ever played: Full Throttle. I popped the silver disc in the drive and instantly that opening sequence did me in. I spent the next several days glued to my state of the art machine. Thus began my love affair with the adventure genre.

As the genre proved too tedious and slow for the newer generations and was taken over by first person shooters, platformers, and hybrids, I discovered I belonged to the marginal, unlucky bunch who experienced motion sickness with the moving-cam perspective. Which is to say, I am unable to play 95% of modern games. Try as I might, FPS and TPS games literally make me sick. I think to myself, how perfect all these new titles would be if I just had the choice to switch to a fixed perspective, heck, even to an isometric view. My kid finds the idea absurd. Apparently, the death of the isometric view in action games had a lot to do with immersion, or lack thereof, which is strange to me because the more I experience an entire scene in one blow, the more immersed I am. I know a game is awesome when, looking up from the screen, my immediate environment suddenly feels strange, as if I was just coming home from somewhere. That’s the part I love most about adventure games. That feeling of being transported into a picture perfect scene.

Now, with close to nil knowledge or practical skills needed to create a visually engaging, challenging, and sensible adventure game, I decide to create a visually engaging, challenging, and sensible adventure game. Sure it might take several years and a mountain of botched attempts to complete one, but what the heck. It will be fun, for the most part…


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