Haunt: Sex, Drugs, and Rock ‘n’ Roll   4 comments

The original author of Haunt (John Laird) once worked on a sequel called Haunt 2 using the Unreal Tournament engine. This is a screenshot from the now-abandoned project.

Before I get into the triad mentioned in my title, let’s warp back to the very beginning of the game. You have a “token” in your inventory which turns out to let you bypass the whole trivia section I was getting hung up on earlier, as long as you BITE TOKEN.

The token disolves in your mouth.
Your mind fills with a question you MUST answer.
‘What is your name?’
>WHATEVER
‘Second, which sex (male, female, …) interests you sexually
>SOMETHING
‘Your mother would faint if she knew that.’
‘POOF!’
You are on the driveway. The gate to the outside is to the east, but is locked electronically.
To the east is a wall.

I’ll refer back to this later. Now, for some reverse order

III.

… I mentioned this in passing last time, but it’s worth spending a little more time because I’m not sure if it’s meant as just a gag, or if there’s some puzzle-solving related to it I haven’t solved yet. When you first get to the house, “Muffled sounds can be heard inside.” Getting farther gets messages like “weird noises are coming from above” until you reach:

The noise is very loud, it sounds like someone is being flogged with chains!
This hall runs east-west.

>WEST

I can hardly hear myself think.
You now recognize the noise as being an ALICE COOPER GREATEST HITS ALBUM.
You are at a dead end.
A wire can be seen along the wall. It is just visible above the carpet.

>PULL WIRE

The wire SNAPS!
‘Silence!’

It may just be playing with the theme that spooky houses should play spooky music, but the game is also generally mean enough to require some other action here to win the game.

II.

Fairly close by to the entrance you can find a “refrigerator” with a “small white cube”.

>LICK CUBE

UHM! That tasted good!!!

>EAT CUBE

The cube tastes like sugar. You are suddenly surrounded by a herd of moose. They start talking to you about a moose-load of things.
One walks over to you and whispers, ‘Fa Lowe, why her?’
You look at your watch, but the hands suddenly spin!
You find yourself staring at the
m
o
o
s
e
?
for a long time, and enjoying it.

I’m not sure what “Fa Lowe” is a reference to, but I did find it on Google given as an actual last name. This also marks the third mysterious name I’ve run across addressed to the player. In my last post I mentioned a note from “Dad” which refers to you as “Bas” and one from “Diver Dan” which refers to you (or someone else?) as “B___ie”. (That’s three underscore marks; based on the other places where they appear in the game, that means exactly three letters.) The same note also says “Take care of _ec_l and he will take care up you.”

There’s enough weight and significance I have put some thought into putting these together, including trying to name the main character “Bas” in case it helps reduce the madness effect of the house. (It didn’t work, but maybe it’s a nickname.) The prologue says the ancestor should not go mad – maybe somehow your character isn’t the ancestor if you don’t name them correctly?

I.

Since last time I managed to get by the “intercept every input” puzzle:

This is the cheese room. The only opening is a trap door above, too high to reach. The walls are made of cheese.
There is a ghost in the room.
Its nose is pink, I believe it has been drinking too much.

>BOO

The ghost is scared to death and disappears.

>EAT WALL

I really prefer my cheese in smaller pieces, but we can give it a try. CHOMP CHOMP..
There is a hole in the west wall, with teeth marks around the edges.

Recall earlier I need to specify “(male, female, …)”. I typed “whatever” which led to this scene …

You are in the torture chamber.
A steel door slammed shut when you entered.
There are no other doors or windows.
There is a good looking whatever entrapped.

… and soon after, this.

The whatever likes you. You make love, talk a little, smoke a cigarette, take a nap, make love, talk, make love, take a nap, make love, etc. You get a gift and then you make love, talk, etc.
Finally the whatever tells you good bye and turns to smoke and disappears through the cold air return duct, overhead.
There are matches here.

I don’t have a lot of insight to provide, other than to note this is hardly the first mainframe game we’ve seen with this sort of thing; I’m especially reminded of the ending of Castle where you rescue both the prince and princess and end up in Nirvana together. At the hobbyist level, there wasn’t yet as much a division between “adult” and mainstream material.

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Posted August 6, 2018 by Jason Dyer in Interactive Fiction

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4 responses to “Haunt: Sex, Drugs, and Rock ‘n’ Roll

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  1. I will bet you 37 cents that “Fa Lowe, why her?” is FOLLOW WIRE.

    • >follow wire

      The wire goes behind a brick in the stone wall.

      >get brick

      The brick moves, but can’t be removed from the wall.
      A secret panel in the wall opens!
      There is a room ahead.

      >e

      You are in the secret room.
      You can go out past the wall, or there is a fireman’s pole that goes down.
      There is some fine marijuana here! Good stuff.

  2. I couldn’t think of something for “why her”, but that was my first thought for the meaning of “Fa Lowe” as well.

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