The Let's Play Archive


by cmndstab

Part 10: Corridor Duty

Last time, Kent had disguised himself as Norm 2782 and had infiltrated the Ordinary Outpost. Working his way to the Processing Floor despite his best attempts to fail doing so, he pushed a red button and uncovered a secret cell of some kind. What will he find there?

Ouch. These guys aren't looking to good.

They all look freaky in there, the glass distorts their features! No one looks very happy either.

Of course, unhappy, distorted features are pretty much par for the course in Neutropolis.

This guy looks like he managed to weather the storm a little better than those other saps. I wonder what goes on inside these tubes?

He's probably just happy because he gets better mood lighting than the others. While Kent is checking things out, however, the room fires up and things begin to move.

Mood Filter (0:50) - The tubes disappear and are replaced with empty ones. Then, they move on as well and bring in a new batch of prisoners; including Saul Nystalux. Before Kent can think of a plan to rescue him, however, an alarm goes off, and Kent finds himself face to face with an angry Paul Nystalux.

Oh, shitfuck. Kent figures he may as well try talking his way out of things. After all, Norm 2782 is a moron, and Kent has had plenty of practice at being a moron!

I'm on guard here.
You have failed in a most comprehensive manner, Norm. By allowing a dangerous and different subversive to ruin one of the city's primary shopping facilities. I also find you in a restricted area. As punishment, you will work the next five weeks on corridor duty on one of the Pen landings. Surely you can get into no trouble there. I would also advise you to forget what you have seen here.

Wait, Paul actually bought our Norm 2782 act? What the fuck? No!!

This was supposed to be my moment of triumph, damn it! KENT WAS SUPPOSED TO BE GOING BACK TO THE GODDAMN BLUE PENS! I'm going to fucking kill you for this bullshit, Paul, you smug little prick!!

Oh what the fuck is going on now? We're being filmed?? Or spied on, more likely.

The guy's plump and well buffed. Looks like he's thoroughly efficient. That means he won't miss a trick. I gotta throw him off my scent.

Why don't you just pretend to be Paul or something and see if he's a fucking moron like EVERYONE ELSE IS IN THIS GODFORSAKEN CITY.

Norm 2782, we're putting together an in-depth documentary about you and your brave attempts to stop the evil path of subversion, and your time in captivity at their hideout, and how this affects you on a daily basis. We will be filming and listening to you at all times with hidden cameras and mics. Please try to act as naturally as possible.

Believe me man, you don't want Kent to act naturally.

Hey guy, I appreciate the attention but I'm gonna have to ask you to leave. Thanks and all. Maybe another day.
Ah, sorry Paul didn't tell you. He has commissioned this work. he wants some footage to show the population what a dangerous job you Norm guys do. He said you were a perfect example of how Police action can get really screwed up.

Yup. Paul has totally set a dude up to spy on us to make sure we don't try to escape or anything like that. So basically Kent is screwed. I guess this isn't too bad after all.

OK, I guess you should get on with it. I'll try to be as natural as possible. If I do anything weird it's probably the after-effects of my trauma. I was deeply affected.
Thank you for your co-operation. Just pretend I'm not here. Be yourself please. Your comfort is our pleasure.

Oh yes, nothing says comfort like having hidden cameras film you while you're taking a shit.

It's a bag full of what appears to be miniature cameras and microphones. They're all black and shiny, like little dog's noses.

Severed dog noses? That sounds like fodder for Kent's pockets!

Here goes...
I'll thank you to leave those right there, Norm. You are a curious one, aren't you? They're just bugs which are surplus to my requirements. Most are hidden. If you spot any, try not to break them. They're very very fragile, and not cheap.

More buttons than a pearly king's best suit. This must be mission control.
That's right, Norm. With this baby I can record your every move and sound. Don't worry, we won't miss a damn thing! Just try to act natural.

He keeps asking for that, but when Kent tries to act natural by pushing buttons like a hyperactive toddler, the filmer guy gets all pissy about it.

Twisting knobs and pushing buttons! Even a rabid chimp could do it!
Whooooah! Hold it right there! It takes more than ten years to learn how to operate this console, and you've never seen one before, have you? If you stick to your tasks I'll stick to mine. Just pretend I'm not here.

Ten years? Bullshit. I wonder if this guy even realises that he isn't pointing his camera in our direction? He must be getting great shots of that blue wall to the side of us.

Kent has had enough of this crap. He decides to talk his way out of this shitty situation with his typical incredibly transparent attempts to trick the filmer.

Yes, Norm 2782?
Why don't you take five, buddy? You're looking a little grey around the eyes there.
I was awake and alert for twelve consecutive days when Saul Nystalux passed away. Sleep is a luxury to me, plus I can't leave my gorgeous equipment unattended. Thanks for the offer though, Norm.

That probably explains why you were too tired to notice that Saul didn't actually die at all. Kent keeps pushing.

Say, don't you need to go to the bathroom? The old waistline looks a little bloated, plus if you hang on to your, er... toxins, you might make yourself sick.
No, I went just before you arrived. I'm not too regular to be honest. Must be the odd hours that I work.
Is there any time when you aren't recording? Changing a tape for example?

"Not that I'm asking for any reason, such as planning to escape while you're not watching or anything like that. I'm just curious. Really."

No, it's continuous. All kept in yonder black box by my feet. Totally solid state, no moving parts. Ahhh, the miracle of silicon! Ask any lifeguard!
Is there anywhere where you can't see or hear me? Or do you see EVERYTHING?
Everything, Love! Everything! I see everything. But don't worry, we won't be using the meatier shots.

Not without a decent zoom function, anyway. This isn't working.

I'll get back to my duties then. Make sure you get my best side.

You don't have a best side, Kent.

Naturally, upon hearing his every move is being filmed to be broadcast across the city, Kent's first move is to head to the smallest room.

Seems it's not just Kent's apartment that has filthy green water and sanitary equipment that doesn't work. We'll actually find out next update why the toilet isn't flushing, but we can't now.

Attempting to leave without drying your hands draws out this acting tip from Big Brother. The joke is on him! That IS natural for Kent! Hey, you asked for it, man.

This is the common room area for Norms on corridor duty, it would seem.

This must be where the Norms chew the fat and brag about the size of their children.

Those scum!!

I can lift this to get to the Food-Mat.

Inside, however, there is only *FOOD*, which Kent refuses to eat. I don't really blame him.

There's a screwed up ball of paper in this bin. Kent is used to retrieving most of his inventory from dumpsters and bins, so he grabs the paper and flattens it out.

Is this a warning to duuuuudes?


There are a bunch of papers stuck up here.

Wow! These guys are about as efficient as I am at getting their stuff together. Must be a hundred pieces of paper on this!

The difference between the Norms and you is that they have 100 different pieces of paper on their wall, whereas you have 100 different varieties of mould on your wall, Kent.

How can a pinboard be out of order?!

Moving this sign out of the way...

We reveal another paper with these wacky D/U instructions.

Strange, I always though it was the Dynamic Duo. The last letter is a zero instead of an '0'.

Either Kent is a moron and thinks that these codes are actual words, or he realises they're codes and is just cracking horrible jokes for fun. Either way, fuck you Kent.

A book here lists all the prisoners in the Ordinary Outpost.

The prisoner ledger. Let's see... Mr. Ab Normal, doing time for impersonating Paul Nystalux. Thirty years ago! Aha, that MUST be Saul!

"Mr. Ab Normal". People actually believed that shit? This city isn't even worth saving.

Using this bureau...

The roll-top opens.

...we find yet another piece of paper...

...with another D/U code. This one apparently initiates prisoner evacuation, which I suppose is what we're here to do. Not that I imagine Kent has a long enough attention span to even remember his mission anymore. I'm half expecting him to pick up a broom and start sweeping soon.

And another piece of paper! This one says U-D-U-D-U-2.

Armed with several pages of incomprehensible codes, Kent enters the "Zoom System Control" room.

This looks like some kind of ridiculous security system. It's relatively obvious what the codes correspond to, looking at this. You can push any of those five pedals down (or leave them up), and that lever has three settings, presumably corresponding to 0, 1 and 2. Why would they put Norm 2782 in a room with free access to the security system? Surely they could have given him corridor duty in any other corridor that wasn't directly attached to the security room?

Well, hell. If they're going to give us access, we'll take advantage of it. Kent pulls out the prisoner evac code and gets to work.

Unfortunately, Kent is being watched by the filmer, who apparently recognises the prisoner evacuation code. Now, the filmer doesn't actually do anything about it. He doesn't raise an alarm, he doesn't give Paul a call. He doesn't come to the room. He doesn't even indicate that you should stop. He just kind of taunts you over the microphone.

Pretty impotent, except it apparently works because Kent just gives up after hearing the voice. Just push the fucking button Kent! It's not like you haven't already been exposed as trying to free the prisoners! Just finish the fucking job!!

Of course, Kent doesn't, and instead plugs in some of the other codes. Most of them do nothing, just changing some lighting or whatever. This one was listed as no longer being operational.

By which they apparently mean that entering this code gives Kent a massive fucking jolt of electricity. Watching him writhe around on the floor afterwards is strangely satisfying.

Also necessary. After taking the jolt, Kent collapses to the ground, at which point you're able to look underneath the device. It is impossible to look under it otherwise. This is what is known as a "terrible game mechanic".

Anyway, Kent checks out this little camera under here. Oh sorry, not camera, "Blob".

Sneaky. Putting a bug right under here. That guy must see EVERYTHING I do!

And yet he wasn't even remotely concerned when we just fried the shit out of ourselves. Didn't even say a word, just kept filming your singed, almost certainly dead body. I'll bet this guy produces thrilling documentaries.

This piece of paper says DUUU1, which Kent misinterprets as "dull". You might expect that this hidden code will be important, but in fact it's completely useless. It doesn't even do anything. You got me again, Normality!!

Okay, so the puzzle here is that a whole bunch of those bugs are stuck around this room. Until we have found all of them, Kent will be too much of a chickenshit loser to actually spring the prisoners. It's not as though that filmer is going to fucking do anything, but Kent is apparently just a huge wimp, so we have to find them. There's one up here....

Another one over here...

And one down here that we could actually see when Kent was spasming on the floor before, but couldn't take until we stood up, for no good reason.

It's not enough to simply collect them though. Kent has to dispose of them entirely, which he achieves by chucking them into the water in the *FOOD* tray.

Thankfully, the expected puzzle of having to remove the bugs from this room to prevent the filmer from noticing our destruction of the bugs from the other room never arises. I mean, it really should, and it's kind of retarded that it doesn't. Why would he care about you working on some security system, but not on you destroying the cameras monitoring the security system? I don't really care though, at this point I'm just happy to limit the number of retarded puzzles I have to solve.

Of course, making this process much more painful is the fact that you have to manually dispose of all four bugs, each time getting the same cutscene of Kent choking on the green smoke. Couldn't Gremlin have had Kent throw them all at once? Gah.

With the bugs dealt with, and the filmer outside somehow none the wiser even though half his cameras have gone blank, Kent decides to go liberate the prisoners!

Prison Break (1:21) - As Kent pushes the button, Saul and the other prisoners are sucked into a tube and deposited on the roof of the Ordinary Outpost. Why this was ever a feature built into the security system, I have no idea. It's not like they could then get to safety if there was a fire or something. Anyway, Kent then quickly shoots to the roof and joins Saul in running to the cradle where Dai is waiting. Before they can descend, however, Dai is shot square in the chest, and the cradle careens down the side of the Ordinary Outpost, at which point Kent bravely abandons Dai to bleed to death.

Waaaaait a damn minute. Fuck no. This isn't what I fucking signed up for. Kent was supposed to be screwed. That wasn't even a fucking punishment!! Paul practically dropped us in the fucking security room and told us to liberate Saul whenever we damn well felt like it! KENT WAS SUPPOSED TO BE FUCKING ARRESTED.

This shit won't fucking stand. No way in hell. Tomorrow we're going back in time to do this shit properly. Kent is headed for the Blue Pens whether he fucking likes it or not.