The Let's Play Archive

Shivers 2

by Iris of Ether

Part 1: Yes, Mom, I Made the Bed

Our adventure begins with actually putting a physical disc in the drive (weird, isn't it?) and installing the game.

This is going to be special.

You don't see that logo much anymore. After seeing this game, you'll understand why.

This title screen is misleading. It looks like it would be a pretty cool game, but oh no. They had other ideas in mind.

After selecting New Game, you're prompted to enter a name for your save file. It never comes up again, so if you'd like, you can imagine that we entered "Dongs". (We did not.)

Oh, good, an opening video to really drive home what a horrible mistake we're about to make. I'm referring to playing the game, not staying at a creepy motel. Staying at a creepy motel has got to be better than this.

After watching us pull up, he turns his back to the door and leaves his safety bat on the counter behind him. I can tell this town is full of Very Smart People.

Like in the original Shivers, our character is also a Very Smart Person

For most of this LP I'll be cutting out the interface since it doesn't change much, but while it's up there, let me talk about it a little bit. The ugly green bar on the bottom represents your hit points, and the buttons underneath that access the basic menus. Right now, only the mysterious "internet" button is active. Unsurprisingly, clicking it does nothing.

There's a small shelf above the green bar that contains your inventory. Right now, we've got $40 and a key, which shows that the Shivers 2 inventory is a little more advanced than the original Shivers' "nothing but pots" style. Picking an item up and dropping it on the creepy disembodied eye shows you a close up of the item. That's also how you combine items if needed: while looking at one item up close, pick up the other item and drop it on the close-up.

" up. Cyclone has turned into quite a dangerous town... people disappearing right and left. Someone has left a message for you."

I can already tell this is going to be... special.

" If you're a friend of theirs, I don't want you around here. You can just turn around and go back where you came from. Well, I can't say that I trust you, but I'm not cruel. You can have room five. And that will be $37.50... up front."

Oh, I see. He's not stupid, he's just schizophrenic. It all makes sense now.

This is the game's inventory tutorial. It wants you to pick up the obvious placeholder graphic representing $40 and drop it on the counter.

Instead, let's keep clicking on him.

Well, that was short-lived. Fine, we'll play along.

With that settled, it's time to get some sleep.

That was, uh...

Welcome to Shivers 2, folks.

Here's our hotel room. The first thing you'll notice is the eye-crossing fish lens effect. Rather than static pictures that you click to transition between, Shivers 2 has static pictures that let you pan the camera around and use a fish lens effect to enhance your horror experience by making you nauseous. The supersonic camera panning speeds are also very effective at making your stomach lurch, but thankfully that can be turned down in the options.

Speaking of which, the rest of the buttons on the bottom are active now, so let's see what they do.

First is flashback, which is the same as in Shivers. It lets you review important clues so you don't have to backtrack (as much) later.

Clearly this hides an important clue that we'll need to solve some puzzle or another. I think it's the angle of the bat.

The options screen is really just a menu screen... with a score on it for some reason. This is where you save, load, or access the actual options, which is where we go to turn down the camera panning speed because oh god.

The last button brings up a map of the town. I... don't have anything sarcastic to say about that. It's actually really convenient.

Getting back to the actual game, we spin the camera around to look at the other side of the room. We just woke up in a cold sweat not 30 seconds ago and that bed is pristine. Clearly something is going on here.

There's a radio on the left side of the bed, and pressing the power button turns it on.

" relief in sight. And those unusual clouds you see in the sky? They'll just hold the heat in. Next week...(static) It's going to be hot. (static)"

Pressing the different presets lets us subject ourselves to setting information and thematic exposition.

"...were either found dead or are still missing. Authorities are warning hikers to carry extra water and never travel alone. On a lighter note...(static)"

Remember the corpses from Shivers? Clearly, they should have brought more water into the museum with them. Bringing a friend didn't really help, though.

"...canyons. A ranger told me about this town that's in a canyon. Uh, Cyclone, I think. Well, after driving on gravel roads for 40 miles, the road dead-ended at a landslide. And then I ran out of gas while driving. It was over 100 degrees and I thought I was going to die until someone gave me a lift. When I got back to my car with the gas, my tire was flat. Then..."

[Mack] We got the picture Bob. Next time take the bus. Right, next caller?

[Woman caller] I know the exact place that Bob was talking about. I heard about this canyon, too. And when I tried to drive there, I ran into the same landslide. I just know there's some kind of testing going on and the government has dynamited the hillside to keep us people out. (static)"

Remember this radio chatter for later so you can point out the plot holes big enough to drive a truck through.

The other side of the bed has a phone with a blinking red light signifying a voice mail message. Picking up the receiver and pressing the green button lets you listen to it.

This is another thing to note down for the "obvious plot holes" section of your puzzle notebook. We try dialing the number, but unsurprisingly...

Back to the rest of the room, there's a TV in the corner that we can't do anything with yet and a couple dresser drawers.

...a couple empty dresser drawers.

To the left of the dresser we find our suitcase. This is part 2 of our inventory tutorial. We're supposed to pick up our key and use it on the lock.

Excellent. Now we can dive in and figure out the identity of the milkman.

"For $30, you can take a picture of me for your video game, and I'll even wear the stupid shirt... but I won't smile."

We also pick up this video tape from the right side of the suitcase. Remember those? Video tapes? ...nobody?

T.V.? Oh no. I don't like the sound of that last line at all.

The game's first puzzle is to figure out what to do with that strange video tape thing. It turns out, you can put it in this machine and it will play a video. I think it's a little obtuse for such an early puzzle, but that happens with these old adventure games.

Clearly, this was important enough to bring all the way here.

Moving on, there's a bathroom next to the exit.

A swank bathroom.

A swank, gothic bathroom.

...which suits us, because we are apparently a vampire. Whoever the bad guy is better watch the fuck out.

There's nothing of interest here, so we head out.

...just how long did we sleep anyway? The dude at the front desk will be pissed. Or maybe sympathetic. Hard to tell with him.

Either way, it's probably better to get it over with.

Missing. He could also be missing. That is a perfectly sensible third option.

We'll just ring the bell. ...the bell next to the creepy looking box.

The creepy box is actually an even creepier jack in the box. Thankfully, once I heard the voice acting, it ceased being scary entirely.

Clicking on the voodoo stick puts it on our cursor and makes it a pain in the ass to figure out where to click to back out of this close-up.

When we finally back out, we're confronted by a mysterious spirit woman. Seriously. I can't make this up.

She's pointed out that our life is starting to drain, so it's time to haul ass to the canyon before we die.

She reminds us again in case we forgot sometime in the last 12 seconds. I think she's supposed to represent what playing an adventure game would be like with your mother hovering over your shoulder.

Time for that convenient map I mentioned. We're at the hotel, which is the bright yellow building in the upper right. The canyon is ... way the fuck at the bottom left. Of course. Why wouldn't it be on the complete opposite end of town?

That's the gas station, so it must be...

...this way. Better run for it!

At the intersection, we can go left or right.

It shouldn't matter either way, so I go right.

This looks promising. Let's keep going!

That's probably the canyon up ahead.

Shit, no, it's a mine.

Gotta head back and find the actual path to the canyon.

Another intersection. Judging by the map, now we want to go right.

stupid mine

She even tells you to do things in the most vague manner possible, just like mom would. Instead of, "clean the thing," it's, "find the one with the symbol."

Inside the canyon there are a bunch of creepy stick drawings on the walls.

If we sit still long enough, the drawings start shooting us with voodoo energy and our life goes down. Trust me, I wish I was making this up.

To avoid dying, we'll have to haul ass through here and try to find, "the one with the symbol."

I see many symbols. Thanks, Mom.

The symbol on the upper left matches the one on the creepy jack in the box, so we touch it with the magic voodoo stick bahos and...

Um, sure. Indian voodoo not-tetromino puzzles. You know, when this was all set up by an eccentric explorer, things actually made some semblance of sense. Don't let that stop you, though, Shivers 2.

Anyone want to take a crack at this?