Monday, June 26, 2017

407 - Drink PUNCH

You down the rest of your PUNCH. You happen to notice that SKULLY has remarkably clean TEETH. Simultaneously, you also notice that a strange LOOK has come over THE FACE OF DAVE.

There's probably no connection here. Nothing to worry about. Silly to even... think... such... hmm.

You put down your empty EMPTY RED CUP. Dave turns back to look at you, smiling.

He asks if you noticed anything special in your DRINK.

>

Friday, June 23, 2017

406 - Accept PUNCH

You accept a CUP OF PUNCH. The pinkish/purplish beverage is moderately tasty, if a bit sweet. Sadly, sipping it does not reinvigorate you the same way as, say, consuming an entire fully-cooked CHICKEN found by smashing open a BARREL.

You ask DAVE if he has any DUCT TAPE with which you could fashion for yourself a RUDIMENTARY SPLINT for your broken LEG. DAVE laughs. Of course he has DUCT TAPE! He didn't bring it to the BREAK ROOM, though. He didn't expect to need it at the PARTY.

Noting what he did, in fact, bring with him, you ask him what the DEAL is with the TOOTHBRUSH.

For a time, he doesn't reply.

Silently, Dave puts down his punch and hat, drawing the toothbrush from his pocket. His movements are smooth and deliberate, performing an action he had perfected a thousand times before. His countenance, sorrowful, is that born of a grief too deep to bear, a grief that each moment threatens its bearer's very soul. He turns away, contemplating the object of his despair. His stare goes beyond the toothbrush, beyond the walls of the break room, beyond the temple itself and through time to something in the past so drenched in sadness that even its reflection in his one good eye is almost enough to bring a man to tears. Finally, his voice, scarred by torments echoing across the gulf of time, wrenches itself from the very depths of Dave's being.

"Don't forget to brush your teeth," Dave says.
>

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

405 - Inquire about much-needed MEDICAL ASSISTANCE

You've been a real TROOPER about this whole "broken leg" thing, but the fact is, it is three or four hundred percent more painful than you've been letting on. You ask Dave (as he fetches himself a REFILL) whether (A) he is a DOCTOR or (B) if there is a MEDICAL FACILITY nearby. Dave laughs at the very NOTION that he is a DOCTOR and informs you that he's the HANDYMAN of the TEMPLE OF THE ANCIENT WEAPON. It's his job to keep everything up and running (and that ain't easy, mind you). There used to be a DOCTOR on site, but that was before the vicious series of deathtrap-related accidents that killed most of the STAFF in horrific sacrifices to sate the never-ending thirst of the dark---

Dave remembers his MANNERS and offers you PUNCH.

Would you like some punch?

>

Monday, June 19, 2017

404 - Don PARTY HAT

Of all available PARTY HATS, the blue and brown HAT with yellow and purple border and three yellow spots appeals most to you. You pull it out from behind the STACK OF HATS and put it on top of your UNIFORM HAT. You proceed to give your next three favorite PARTY HATS to SKULLY, so that he is now wearing a purple, red, and blue STACK OF HATS. Your least favorite PARTY HAT, the GREEN PARTY HAT, remains forlorn upon the TABLE. Stupid GREEN PARTY HAT.

As you admire your HAT on your HAT, DAVE chats with SKULLY. They've really hit it off!

>

Friday, June 16, 2017

403 - Wish DAVE a happy BIRTHDAY


Judging by contextual CLUES, the FELLOW in the ORANGE JUMPSUIT with the GLASS EYE is named DAVE and this is a BIRTHDAY PARTY. Is it a party for him? A party for someone else? The MERCENARY doesn't know, but decides to jump in with both FEET (including the broken one). He wishes "DAVE" a happy BIRTHDAY.

DAVE accepts the felicitations. He excitedly introduces himself as "Dave" and welcomes the MERCENARY to his BIRTHDAY PARTY. He's so glad to have another GUEST! While he'd be happy to give you some CAKE and PUNCH, he's afraid that the regulations demand all guests wear a PARTY HAT.

The MERCENARY agrees. Following PROTOCOL is essential. He moves to select a properly-colored HAT.


>

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

402 - Poke TRASH HOLE with DEMIPIKE POLE


Poking the TRASH HOLE with the DEMIPIKE is clearly the most pressing course of action. Anything else would be simply irresponsible.


You have acquired: PICKLE

>Wish DAVE a happy BIRTHDAY

Monday, June 12, 2017

401 - Go through POSTER

You pass through this second POSTER and find yourself and SKULLY in some kind of BREAK ROOM. Along one side, you can see the HYDRAULIC PRESSES which moved the WESTERN SPIKED WALL of the PIT TRAP. Beside you is an EMPLOYEE TRASH HOLE and a SODA MACHINE (INOPERABLE).

At the southern end of the room, a MAN in an ORANGE JUMPSUIT and ORANGE PARTY HAT seems excited. The TABLE beside him features CAKE, a CEREMONIAL CAKE DAGGER, PLASTIC CUPS, and a PUNCH BOWL filled with (presumably) PUNCH. A selection of PARTY HATS of various colors sits nearby.

Exits are WEST, DOWN, and AIR DUCT.

What do you do?

>Poke TRASH HOLE with DEMIPIKE POLE

Friday, June 9, 2017

400 - Check behind THIS sign

Yep. It's another way out. Cheeky deathtrap architects.

You share a SENSIBLE CHUCKLE with SKULLY.

>Go through POSTER

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

423 - Go through POSTER

Clambering through the torn POSTER, you find yourself in a small CRAWL SPACE, barely large enough for yourself, your DEMIPIKES, and SKULLY THE SKULL. As the SPIKED WALLS close behind you in the PIT, you breathe an uneasy SIGH OF RELIEF. You've escaped, but a SIGN on the WALL implies that you are not safe just yet.

Oh, and you left PLANTY THE PLANT behind. You hope he's OK.

(He's not.)
>Check behind this SIGN

Monday, June 5, 2017

398 - Assault POTTED PLANT

In your fury at this ridiculous predicament, you knock over the POTTED PLANT with your SINISTER DEMIPIKE. This happens to drag the BLADE across the POSTER, cutting a large, sinister SLASH through it, which happens to reveal a large, sinister post-POSTER space behind it. It's too dark to see where the space leads.

Shortly thereafter, a ROPE is lowered down into the PIT (a veritable DEUS EX TUMICLA). Could this be the CAPTAIN actually helping for once? Or perhaps something far... more... sinister?
  • If you enter the SPACE behind the POSTER, turn to page 423.
  • If you climb the ROPE, turn to page 518.
  • If you wait to see how this whole CRUSHING WALL thing plays out, turn to page 239.

Wait, no, that's not right. What do you do?

>Go through POSTER

Friday, June 2, 2017

397 - Upgrade PIKE, escape PIT

Utilizing the modular blade system inherent in your late-model PIKE, the MERCENARY attaches and locks in the CARBON FIBER REINFORCED POLYMER SPIKE. With both ends spike-ified, you stick the PIKE between the SPIKED WALLS. When the walls are closed enough, the PIKE braces against them, forming a semi-stable platform.

The CAPTAIN, taking both DECORATED SKULLS, climbs up onto the PIKEFORM from on top of the MERCENARY'S HEAD. The CAPTAIN half-heartedly says some platitudes about coming back for the MERCENARY before climbing up onto the SECURITY CAMERA and out of the PIT.

The MERCENARY, despite his broken LEG, begins to formulate a PLAN to climb up when, with a snap, the PIKE fractures.
Aw, snap.

>Assault POTTED PLANT

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

396 - Vandalize PRICELESS SPIKE WALL

You manage to snap off one of the SPIKES from the wall after quite a bit of RELENTLESS EFFORT, unwittingly exploiting the low plasticity common to carbon fiber reinforced polymers to create catastrophic tensile failure. While the one blade pops off, the fact that the entire WALL is filled with rows of (unclimbably thin and sharp) SPIKES (in unrenderable 3D) makes the long-term viability of de-spiking unactionable within your allotted time frame.

On the other hand, the MERCENARY quite ably picks up the JET SKULL WITH SAPPHIRE EYES that he dropped earlier, so that all worked out well.

>Upgrade PIKE, escape PIT

Monday, May 29, 2017

395 - Be CAPTAIN and MERCENARY for reals

The GOOD NEWS is that you are still alive. That pretty much sums up all of the GOOD NEWS.

The BAD NEWS is that your preliminary exploration of the HALL OF DEATHTRAPS (after escaping the whole INCENDIARY MOUSETRAP FIASCO) has dropped both of you into an authentic "PIT WITH MOVING SPIKED WALL" TRAP, which has been slowly closing on you. Very slowly. It's been, like, five minutes and it's still just sort of chugging away toward you. But those CARBON FIBER REINFORCED PLASTIC SPIKES will kill you, eventually.

Also, the MERCENARY broke his LEG during the fall and dropped his JET SKULL, so that's not great, either.

Visible exits are UP.

What do you do?

>Vandalize PRICELESS SPIKE WALL

Friday, May 26, 2017

394 - Be CAPTAIN and MERCENARY

No, not the PRISONER. I don't care if you've gained more RESEARCHERS. We're going to be the CAPTAIN and the MERCENARY now! Let's try this again.

>Be CAPTAIN and MERCENARY for reals

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

393 - Proceed

As you proceed with the TOUR GROUP, you thank GOODNESS that there were no LONG-TERM CONSEQUENCES from your actions in the EXHIBITION HALL. None whatsoever. Everything is copacetic. As you head to the next ROOM, you think about your estranged EXPEDITION MEMBERS.

What could the CAPTAIN and MERCENARY be up to?

>Be CAPTAIN and MERCENARY

Monday, May 22, 2017

392 - Ignore SKULL

As the TOURISTS run past, you remember the GOLD SKULL WITH JET EYES. You shouldn't just leave it there! It belongs in a MUSEUM. A different MUSEUM. But with the CONSTRUCTS closing in, there's just no way to save both IT and YOURSELVES. You order the FEMALE TOURIST (in no uncertain TERMS) to hork the WEAPON FRAGMENT into the LASER GRID to reactivate the SECURITY SYSTEM. She horks it!


It's super effective!


The SECURITY DOORS slam shut and the TOUR GROUP is safe again, at least for the time being. But with your only AVENUE OF EGRESS now blocked, who knows what dangers lie ahead....

>Proceed

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

390 - Grab the GOLDEN SKULL!

As the TOURISTS run past, you remember the GOLD SKULL WITH JET EYES. You can't leave it there! It belongs in a MUSEUM. A different MUSEUM. Determined to swipe rescue it, even at the cost of your own HP, you dash back past the CONSTRUCTS.

You have it! It's more beautiful than you ever imagined.... So beautiful.... So mesmerizing....

>Be... dead?

Monday, May 15, 2017

389 - Re-loot and Run

While you would love to dwell on several SEEMING INCONGRUITIES (such as your aforeunmentioned SECRET MISSION or if there were actual ANSWERS to the RIDDLES), you've already got too many METAPHORICAL IRONS in the equally metaphorical FIRE. Grabbing your precious BOOK and your less-precious PAN FLUTE, you yell to the TOUR GROUP to follow you out of the EXHIBITION HALL. They begin to head your way (EAST).

Apparently, the epic TOURIST vs. CONSTRUCT battle damaged forces on both sides. The MALE TOURIST has been bitten, looking worse for wear. The CONSTRUCTS have been decapitated, impaled, and/or inconvenienced, but they're absolutely implacable! If you don't think of a way to stop them, they'll pursue you to THE (literal?) ENDS OF THE WORLD!

What do you do?

>Grab the GOLDEN SKULL

Friday, May 12, 2017

388 - Indulge in IDLE FANCY

While you regret not mentioning your totally explicable 1337 HACKING SKILLS when the CAPTAIN was berating you for being useless, you can still imagine how FREAKIN' SW33T the CAPTAIN would think such SKILLS were. The CAPTAIN be all like, "Wow The Scholar your so gud at haxors better than I could ever be at thems and your pretty."

But you couldn't tell any of your CREWMATES about your SECRET ABILITIES, since that might jeopardize your TOTALLY SECRET SECONDARY MISSION.

>Re-loot and Run

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

387 - Run BLACKHAT.exe

We don't have TIME for poorly-translated ANCIENT RIDDLES!

>Indulge in IDLE FANCY

Friday, May 5, 2017

385 - Use SECURITY PANEL

While the TOUR GROUP distracts the CLAY HOARD, you pick up your BUCKLED HAT and head for the SECURITY PANEL. After all, it wouldn't do to be deprived of your HAT while adventuring. It just isn't done!

With a final upward gesture with your THUMB towards your FLORAL-PRINTED ALLIES, you turn to open the PANEL.

Good buckled goodness. There's a PUZZLE inside.

>Solve the PUZZLE

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

384 - FLASH! A-ah!

Flash! A-ah! They'll save every one of us!

>Use SECURITY PANEL

Monday, May 1, 2017

383 - Come up with a PLAN

After a quick scoot away from DANGER, you take mere MOMENTS to come up with a PLAN.

You need to escape these IMPLACABLE CONSTRUCTS. To do so, you'll need to open the SECURITY DOORS. To open them, you'll need to access the SECURITY PANEL. While the ANCIENT FIGURES aren't particularly fast, they aren't particularly slow either. You'll need to lure them away from the PANEL.

But how?

>Get killed by CONSTRUCTS?

Friday, April 28, 2017

382 - Brace for DANGER

That's... that's not bracing for DANGER. That's just lying there, SCHOLAR.

Oh, dear.

>Come up with a PLAN

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

381 - Have a nice TRIP

You are in pain. A SIREN is sounding. There are a lot of RED FLASHING LIGHTS. SECURITY DOORS have slammed shut. You have dropped your INVENTORY.

Surely, surely, this can't get any worse.

>Brace for DANGER

Monday, April 24, 2017

380 - Read WARNING PAMPHLET

One of the brochures bears the traditional SIGIL OF PERIL, also known as an exclamation point in a triangle. If it truly bears ANCIENT WISDOM, perhaps reading it will save you from some HORRIBLE MISSTEP that would lead to your UNTIMELY DEMISE.
While you can't directly translate the ANCIENT WISDOM, you can sort of tell what it says. I mean, kind of. There's an unpleasant amount of guesswork involved. The main thing that you can glean is that you must not anger the great god KURDZTILTN, lest you face his unbearable, BLOOD-CURDLING WRATH and NIGH-IMMEDIATE VENGEANCE. Staying on his good side shouldn't be too difficult, right? (Also, the PAMPHLET says, don't trigger the SECURITY SYSTEM. It's there for your protection.)

Well, nothing to do now but to walk across the ROOM (without tripping) and head EAST to whatever is---SWEET KURDZTILTN!

>Have a nice TRIP

Friday, April 21, 2017

379 - Plot VENGEANCE

Once, you were whole. Once, you were fresh and minding your own business. Then, the foot came. You were crushed. Now, only one thought remains:

REVENGE.

>Read WARNING PAMPHLET

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

378 - Determine ANCIENTNESS

You begin to determine the ANCIENTNESS ATTRIBUTES of the ASWORDED CUTLERY, but your mad SCHOLASTIC SKILLZ go kind of haywire and you date everything in the ROOM. Except the TOURISTS. They're taken.

>Plot VENGEANCE

Monday, April 17, 2017

377 - Fine, forget the MOUSETRAP

With the Quikskim© of the BROCHURE complete, your TOUR is going swimmingly. Your FACTS are, in fact, based on FACTS, and that is proving popular with the TOUR GROUP. But even as you speak with renewed confidence (and with the TOUR GROUP), it's almost like you've found yourself in MEDIA RES, or one of the surrounding boroughs. A quick RECAPITULATION of the ENVIRONS may be in order.

You are in an EXHIBITION HALL (sponsored by Quetzelcolatl©). Three clay MANNEQUINS in AUTHENTIC HISTORICAL GARB stand along the NORTH wall, behind a LASER SECURITY GRID. Two SECURITY CAMERAS keep an eye on everything. A BROCHURE STAND near the door contains BROCHURES (one of which you have taken and read). The two other DISPLAYS in the room contain two FLINTY CLUB-SWORDS and a GOLD SKULL WITH JET EYES.

Exits are WEST (back to the LOBBY where the CAPTAIN© was so mean) and EAST.

What do you do?

>Determine ANCIENTNESS

Friday, April 14, 2017

376 - Seriously, build a MOUSETRAP

OK, no. We're a CHEESE WEDGE now, I guess? This is ridiculous.

>Fine, forget the MOUSETRAP

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

375 - Build a better MOUSETRAP

You decide to build a MOUSETRAP out of your various INVENTORY ITEMS, including (but not limited to) two DECORATIVE SKULLS, a FROMAGE (PETITE), a PIKE, BITS OF STRING, a---

Wait.

What are we doing back here? PRISONER, where did you get that EQUIPMENT? Where did you get those SCIENTISTS? This isn't right.  This isn't right at all.

We're getting off track.

>Seriously, build a MOUSETRAP

Monday, April 10, 2017

374 - Barter for FOOD

While the MERCENARY, finished with his SOLILOQUY, continues to wonder about the DEAL with these SKULLS, the CAPTAIN sees a possible solution to their MONETARY SLASH COMESTIBLE PROBLEMS.

The CAPTAIN offers to exterminate the OLD FOOD MUN's little MUS MUSCULUS problem in exchange for some MONEY AND SLASH OR FOOD. The CAPTAIN is confident that someone willing to get their HANDS dirty should be able to clean up the RIOTOUS RODENTS post haste. (That someone to do the cleaning is, of course, the MERCENARY.)

The OLD FOOD MUN notes that the MICE seem to be taking care of their own business. The two VERMIN seem to be having a right old TUSSLE. Back and forth. Over and over. Gosh, the EXCITEMENT is figuratively MURDER.

The MERCENARY decides he has no CLUE as to what the DEAL is with these SKULLS. Stupid ANCIENT KNICKKNACKS.

>Build a better MOUSETRAP

Friday, April 7, 2017

373 - Retrieve SKULL from TRASH

Seven years pass. The same joke returns. The wheel keeps spinning, eternal.
The MERCENARY notices and extracts the JET AND SAPPHIRE SKULL from the WASTE RECEPTACLE. He looks at it sadly for a moment before holding it aloft and saying a few WORDS.

Apparently, this sort of thing is not uncommon.

>Barter for FOOD

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

372 - Enter the FOOD COURT

After what seems like a week of travel, the CAPTAIN and MERCENARY have arrived in the COURT OF FOODS. Two VENDORS hawk their presumably digestible WARES. To the left, a PRETZEL GIRL in the livery of "Quetzel Pretzel" appears to have PRETZELS (both SALTED and UNSALTED). To the right, an OLD FOOD MUN in the livery of "Food" has "FOOD."

Elsewhere in the room, you can see two TABLES, eight STOOLS, two pairs of SALT AND PEPPER SHAKERS, a FLOOR CRACK, two MICE, a TOOTHBRUSH, and a WASTE RECEPTACLE.

Exits are WEST (back to the LOBBY), NORTH (into the HALL OF DEATHTRAPS), and EAST (to a UNISEX RESTROOM).

What do you do?

>

Monday, April 3, 2017

371 - Warn the OTHERS

The trip was long and difficult, but you've finally made it back to the GATES OF MOUSEHOLD. You saw the PORTENT, of that you can be sure. As KING of the MOUSETEC, it is your duty to see to the safety of your people in this HOUR OF DOOM.

You've always had your DOUBTS about whether the GYPSY WOMAN'S PROPHECY was accurate. What a fool you were to not take her seriously. But... perhaps it is not too late.

You confide in SCAR (your loyal, grizzled GUARDSMOUSE) about your WORRIES. He has always supported you, even helping you to get past those gnawing SUSPICIONS that there were some MICE within the KINGDOM that were trying to bring about the APOCALYPSE and destroy all that you have built. Haha, what foolish notions those were, eh?

All that's left is to warn your SUBJECTS and evacuate. Come on, SCAR. SCAR?


>Enter the FOOD COURT