Good [morning]. Welcome to a nightmare come true.
You are waking from a stupor that feels like a chronic hangover after a week in Vegas. There is a throbbing bump on the back of your head, big enough to make your hat size look like an Olympic record. You notice your right palm is covered with dried blood, but you neither see nor feel any open wounds on your body. On your left forearm you feel a sharp pain under the shirt sleeve. Rolling up the sleeve, you discover what looks like a fresh needle mark. "Have I been injected with something?" you wonder. Then you realize, "I? Who am I?" YOU CAN'T REMEMBER!
As you come out of the fog you are able to make out your surroundings. You have no idea where you are and why you're here. You have no memory ... WHATSOEVER!
Our forgetful hero wakes up in a bathroom still with no recollection of himself or what he's doing. And, while this game is awesome, the interface really does its part to give you that "What the hell am I doing my brain hurts" sort of vibe.
If you're familiar with these type of adventure games, you may already be finding some familiar territory with the interface. The center of the screen is, naturally, the scene in which we're currently at, the top two rows are commands, and the bottom is the descriptive text. The inventory window is on the left by default, and the map indicating areas where you can go is on the right. "Self" is a separate command in case you need to target yourself for an action or for using an item, which happens semi-regularly. You're not missing much in the menu options up top; it comes with a fairly typical early-PC save/load game system where you name the file, and it becomes the heading for your descriptive text window. There's also "Clean Up" and "Mess Up" options under the Special tab, but for the life of me I'm not sure what these do even after clicking them.
One more point: You may have noticed I put brackets around "morning". The game goes off of your internal clock, and wishes you good morning, afternoon, or evening as applies. Pretty cool for the era!
Things will make a little more sense as we go along. For now, let's start by checking the trench coat.
It's a gray trench coat that matches your trousers (and probably your taste).
I'm not really sure how I taste, to be honest, but thanks for the input ICOM.
This is part of why you saw a big gray area on the right before. Opening up containers of any kind opens a new window. This is going to get even sillier in a second, because you can open up containers inside of containers sometimes.
As you can see, there's a lot of... stuff here, and only some of it will actually come in handy. But, I'm taking everything for now, and I promise you it will be wonderful.
Yup, they were hiding one more thing in case you weren't being thorough, and a pretty important thing at that. From left to right and top to bottom: Office key, card key, $20 bill, quarters, trench coat, lighter, sunglasses, handkerchief, cigarettes, and wallet. Naturally, the second container you saw before was a wallet, and not a "leather wall" as the game would have had you believe.
It's a key with the word, "OFFICE," inscribed on it.
It's a card with several tiny holes punched into it. Printed on it are the words, "PRIVATE ACCESS CARD, PENTHOUSE SUITE, SIEGEL, APT. 1A."
It looks like a twenty dollar bill.
It's a quarter with the picture of some dame on it.
It's a gold-plated lighter with the initials J.S. on the side.
It looks like a pair of sunglasses. The lenses are very dark, obviously for those who are very cool.
It's a handkerchief with the initials J.S. embroidered in the corner.
It's a fresh pack of Luckys.
It's a wallet made of fine black leather. It has the initials J.S. embossed in a corner.
Also taking the gun. The gun is vital now and again for saving your life, but since this is an adventure game it is by no means a free pass from all danger. Anyway, time to exit this stall.
Let's check ourselves in the mirror, see how we're holding up.
Should probably see a doctor about that case of sand-face, too... oh well. Let's get out of here.
Bar or women's restroom? Well, you can go into the women's restroom, but there isn't much point as there's no items or anything unique to speak of.
Naturally, I went in to check and make sure. But, notice the headache? That isn't just flavor text; you're running on a clock right now from the start. If you don't recover from the amnesia before time runs out, you fall into a vegetative state and eventually die. This was removed from the NES version, with one exception that we'll get to down the road.
On the bar is a shot.
It looks like a shot of rye mixed with something.
Three ways out, one leading outside, one to the basement, and one going upstairs. The front door to the streets is locked. Let's go upstairs.
Two of the posters read as follows:
It's a poster of "Puff" MacMuffen. No boxer ever took a dive so gracefully as he.
It's a poster of "Doghouse" Riley. A boxer who never did get very tall, but always tried to be.
The third poster, however...
So, we're some kind of boxer? Or, based on the theme of the other posters, an ex-boxer. Interesting.
Moving on through the door.
Not much to do in here. There's an envelope inside the desk.
It looks like a standard legal-size envelope.
The lamp doesn't have a light bulb in it (), and while the game does give you a text box to dial a phone number, the line is cut.
Going through the next door...
Well that's... not good.
See you guys in the next update!