字幕列表 影片播放 列印英文字幕 Feels weird to let another Edutainment Month pass by without covering this one, so let's get to it! This is Castle of Dr. Brain, released in 1991 by Sierra On-Line for multiple home computer platforms of varying popularity. The one we'll be looking at today though is the highly successful VGA version for MS-DOS PCs, here courtesy of a generous LGR viewer named Shawn. And man if that isn't the zaniest, brainiest castle I've ever seen! Shame it's covered up by so many stickers and logos, but I suppose that was a required sacrifice to the gods of marketing. After all, this was during Sierra's early 90s push for multimedia PC gaming dominance, with the majority of their new releases boasting 256-color graphics and impressive sound capabilities. They were all about makin' those third party deals, like this shiny Media Vision promo advertising a $20 rebate with the purchase of one of their Pro Audio Spectrum sound cards. Then inside the box there's this, quote, “Fantastic Book of Logic Puzzles,” whatever that was. Seriously, couldn't tell ya cuz inside the box I found precisely zero books of puzzling logic. However, I did find this note from Shawn, along with the original receipt from 1992! Someone had a field day at Electronics Boutique, spending $95.53 on Castle of Dr. Brain, the May 1992 issue of Nintendo Power Magazine, along with what I'm assuming are the NES versions of The Little Mermaid and Darkwing Duck. Nice. There's a bunch more in here though, including the original 5.25” floppy disks for the game, along with a trio of 3.5” backups, always a wise move. There are also these yellow cards for registering the game and letting you know there's a 16-color EGA version available in case you need to downgrade. Then you get this pair of ads, both for the aforementioned Pro Audio Spectrum card and also for the classic Prodigy dial-up service. Followed by another set of ads in the form of a 1991 Sierra product catalog featuring tons of games, teasers, order forms, and of course, Ken Williams's mustache. And finally there's the manual, or manuals, following the Sierra practice of the time where they included a generic technical manual alongside a booklet tailor-made to the game itself. I really like these funky edges cut into the pages on this one too, not something I've seen very often. Certainly helps make sure that it stands out from other documentation, which is good being that this is one of those Sierra titles that requires you to check this page during gameplay to decipher random codes. Some say copy protection, others say fun mixed-media puzzle, I say let's just get on with it and play the dang game! Castle of Dr. Brain suitably enough begins with the castle of Doctor Brain. It's a uniquely-equipped fortification sitting atop a giant stone head, adorned with all manner of moving parts and haphazard weirdness. After the intro animations do their thing, you cross the bridge and arrive at the front door, where the pointing, clicking, and puzzle-solving begins immediately. You play a nameless, faceless individual, who after seeing a job offer in the local newspaper, is here to apply for the position of assistant to the famous Dr. Brain. But first, you'll need to make your way inside by matching the sequence of colors and tones emanating from this stone arch doorway. [doorbell] [repeating musical tones] Match the pattern and step inside the castle, with this first room existing almost entirely to produce puns. This is a game designed by Corey Cole, after all, co-designer of the pun-tastic Quest For Glory. So Dr. Brain is not only built on the same SCI engine foundation as the Quest For Glory series, but it's built on the same foundation of never-ending puns as well. Not to mention jokes like this one referencing Sierra's Mixed Up Fairy Tales. Anyway, your goal is to make it to through the castle by solving all of the puzzles among the categories of mathematics, pattern recognition, language, logic, timeliness, programming, and “cosmic consciousness,” aka astronomy. There are three main difficulty levels on offer, but no matter what, the underlying puzzles remain the same. First is the math marvel puzzle, requiring you to come up with five solutions from a scrambled set of numbers and a mathematical operator in order to form true statements. Next is the magic square puzzle, a 4x4 grid that needs the correct numbers dropped in place to create a formation where the sum of each row, column, and diagonal add up to the same number. And the third puzzle is a sliding tile puzzle, where you slide tiles around in a puzzle. And on this easier difficulty setting, that means putting the numbers in proper order from one to eight, beginning at the top left. Oh and it's worth mentioning that the better you do at each puzzle, the more coins you'll earn, which can be spent on future puzzles to either solve one section or to receive a hint as to how to complete it. After you've solved this initial trifecta of tantalizing intelligence testers, it's time to decipher the exit door code using the numbers you received and that all-important page in the manual. And now it's time for a test of timeliness with the clock room here, where you're immediately hit with a 60 second timer and a bunch of awful noise. -”You now have 60 seconds!” [clock ticking, bird tweeting] First you'll need to find a way to shut off all the obnoxious sound effects, then you'll have to solve a couple of puzzles involving time. The hourglass puzzle is the first one, where you've got two hourglasses that need to be flipped over correctly so that exactly 40 seconds have passed. Then you have a punch card puzzle that makes you enter the punch cards at exact times, accomplished by manipulating the time clock to match the next time of the punch card sequence. Finally you're ready to move to the next floor so it's onto the first elevator, and you know what, screw these things. Not like, elevators in general. Real life elevators are nice, and I make my daily offerings to Elisha Otis just like everyone else. But no, screw these elevators in particular, because they simply exist to pad out the game with confusing pseudo-3D mazes. Because those. Are everyone's. Favorite thing. Yeah, no. Once you've made your way through that nonsense, it's onto the next floor containing the hall of logic. And really, you get the idea by now. Just like the first floor, this one requires you to solve three puzzles before moving onto the next room. Except here they're all focused on computer logic and programming. Like here where you complete a circuit using a diode, capacitor, coil, battery, and a switch. And here where you've gotta figure out the binary code for the supplied numbers, a process that works just like entering binary using the switches on the front panel of an Altair 8800. And there's also a robot maze that's a whole lot more interesting than the elevator mazes, thank goodness. The robot moves forward on its own and the only way to interact with it is to manipulate these dots to make the robot either continue straight or turn right. Then you can unlock the door at the end of the hall, this time by matching punchlines with jokes. Yep, this entire puzzle basically exists to justify Corey Cole's collection of robot puns. Respect. The final bit on this floor is the robotics room, with a maze encased in glass and a computer where you can program robots using punch cards. I really appreciate how old Dr. Brain's computer systems are, even for 1991. Learning binary logic and entering basic code line by line is not exactly the most relevant knowledge these days, but I can see it helping kids understand lower level programming a little better. And this puzzle in particular requires some tasty logical deduction indeed, being a robotic evolution of the old three guards riddle. You know, in order to proceed there are three doors and three guards. One always lies, one always tells the truth, and one is unreliable. But here you've got three robot heads with three attachments, and each head can be programmed to navigate the maze in order to retrieve three objects. It's tricky stuff, and rather cumbersome with the going back and forth programming punch cards, but so long as you follow the logic of the robot heads it's not too bad. Especially compared to what you get after this: another elevator maze, this one more irksome than the last because of course. Oh well, onto the next floor and another hallway that looks pretty much like the last two, except here you've got a rubber tree to click on. Heh, Secret of Monkey Island much? So yeah this floor consists of word-related puzzles, like this one where it's a straight-up word search. I definitely used a number of my saved-up hint coins here since you're not provided a list of the words themselves. They do at least stick to a clear theme of traditional games and sports, so that helps too. Next up is an acrostic puzzle, where you take those words from the word search and place them horizontally so that it spells out "Parlor Games" in the blue squares straight down the middle. And then you've got a classic tangram puzzle, which I've always rather enjoyed for some reason. The word “enter” is chopped up and scattered among these red pieces, and all you've gotta do is put it back together again by rotating the pieces and dragging them into place. After this is another simple puzzle room, this time being a good ol' jigsaw puzzle. Click the chest in the middle of the room and you'll get a piece, with each correctly-placed piece signaled through sound effects. Good clean fun. Unlike the dungeon [chuckles] Yeah the deeper you go into the castle, the more you start to wonder if Dr. Brain is really the best choice for your boss. Someone was using his head as a dartboard, after all. There's a gallows ready for hangin' folks over there. Not to mention a human skull being used a flower pot, but let's just ignore all that. Cuz we've got a hangman to address, precisely how one would expect. Try to guess the word or phrase letter by letter before the hangman is hung. Oh what in the world, the hangman was alive?! Jeez Dr. Brain, that's a bit much! Anyway, next is a cryptogram puzzle on the TV on the wall, which is yet another familiar puzzle if you've played any number of other puzzle game compilations. The mastermind game is also available, another staple of puzzle game collections like this. You know how it is, figure out the combination of symbols using logic logic logic. Intriguingly though, I believe this is the only puzzle in the game that is technically optional, you don't need to finish it at all. But you are rewarded with two handy items if you do, so I did. Right, another room cleared, and I bet you'll never guess what's next. -“Another maze?” Yep! -“I knew it!” And this one is even larger, more complex, and bothersome to navigate. I don't know if I'm adequately getting across how much I dislike these, here, just look at this list of commands to navigate this one. Yeah, what in the--why, how was this a good idea. Thank you to whoever invented walkthroughs. So with that, we've reached the final puzzle room, the planetarium. And yeah, this is barely a puzzle, it's more of, an activity room, I guess. First you'll have to point out four constellations among the stars, and all you do is click them until the lines form together and it tells you you've found them. There's also the alien homeworld game, a straightforward memory matching game with the slight twist of having to match aliens with their planet. Not the uh, most factually educational part of the game, that's for sure. The solar system puzzle at least represents reality a bit more, though again it's not so much of a puzzle as it is a simple activity. Click the name of each planet and match it to the planet itself in orbit, that's it. If anything it's fun to see Pluto as a planet again. Aw look at the little guy. And then you finally reach Dr. Brain's office, at long last. But not too long of a last because it only takes about an hour and forty-five minutes to get here. So yeah, at this point you'd think you'd be meeting Dr. Brain and signing employment paperwork, but nope! There's no one in sight, the place is kind of a dump, and the phone is ringing off the hook with debt collectors. Again, all the red flags and warning signs, an astute individual would get out while you can. But that's not you, so you continue to solve the final puzzles. There's a list of job skills that you need to complete, accomplished by match the skill with the picture representing the skill. And then the very last thing to do is find a way through the bookshelf, and this is where you'll be glad you collected those items from the mastermind game. Follow the directions and there ya go! Dr. Brain speaks from off-screen and tells you that you've got the job as his new lab assistant. You're granted a very quick peek at the man himself before he enters some kind of monstrous contraption and appears on-screen, letting you know your total score and proceeding to rattle off all the names of the developers behind the game. And yep, that's it! Other than a short teaser for the next game, Island of Dr. Brain, this is all you get. Heh, to be honest, it kinda feels like they ran out of ideas towards the end of the game, padding it out with things like jigsaw puzzles, simplistic word games, areas where you don't really solve any puzzles at all, and of course, needlessly annoying mazes. Still, for a kids edutainment puzzle compilation from 1991, this is pretty enjoyable stuff. And a good number of its puzzles are still mentally taxing as an adult, especially if you crank up the difficulty setting. I can see why it did so well with critics and fans alike back in '91, and it seems to hold a special place in the hearts of those that played it as a kid. Lovely graphics, great music, lots of puns, it's classic Sierra, and if that's your preferred flavor of retro PC gaming edutainment then you can't really go wrong here. [Dr. Brain soundtrack plays] And that's another LGR Edutainment Month complete. Though the videos themselves never stop, with new videos each week on LGR all year round. Stick around for those or check out these existing videos, but either way, thank you very much for watching!