Haunt: Cecil the Seasick Sea Serpent   4 comments

1950: Cecil the Seasick Sea Serpent sings while accompanied by Harry S. Truman (33rd President of the United States) on piano.

This puppet-based TV show (Time for Beany) ran from 1949 to 1955, leading to the cartoon version (Beany and Cecil) which ran from 1959-1962.

At this point you may suspect you have wandered into the wrong blog, but I swear this is relevant to Haunt. From a few posts ago I mentioned this note:

Dear B___ie,
I ran out of air and had to come here. The moss isn’t nutritious enough to survive on. I hope you can use the diamonds.
Take care of _ec_l and he will take care up you.
Diver Dan

I had guessed the name was “Cecil” but was stumped up to there. Cue up a scene on the beach:

There is cool sand beneath your feet.


There is a large conch shell here.


You now own conch .


‘Toot!! Toot!!’ The water near the beach begins to bubble.
A large form emerges from the foam.
There is a large sea serpent here. He looks friendly and he ‘slurp!’ licks your face.

Attempting to >PET SERPENT doesn’t work:

The sea serpent should be address by its real name.

You need to instead >PET CECIL:

The sea serpent replys: ‘Hi Beanie Boy.’
If you ever need help, you know what to say.

Well. You know what to say if you are well versed in 60s TV cartoons, or at least Google searches. A scene later:

The water is a little cooler here.
Something grabs the speargun from you and tosses it away.
There is a vicious eel here. He grabs you and starts squeezing.
You have time for one last request.
There are huge pearls here!!!


‘I’m coming Beanie boy!’
Cecil grabs the eel by the neck and hurls it away.
There is a large sea serpent here. He looks friendly and he ‘slurp!’ licks your face.

>HELP CECIL or >CECIL HELP do not work. (With the first, in fact, the game generates a random insult.) It has to be the exact catchphrase from the show of >HELP CECIL HELP.

. . .

Just to be clear, I did *not* figure out the above on my own. Rather, I decided to send an email to the original author of the game (John Laird) who helpfully replied! So progress continues, but I’ve got at least one very tough puzzle to crack before it’s over.

Posted August 13, 2018 by Jason Dyer in Interactive Fiction

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4 responses to “Haunt: Cecil the Seasick Sea Serpent

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  1. The song in that cartoon (second video) is pretending to be “Mack the Knife” but is totally “Clementine.” (Also Beanie distinctly says “Help Cecil” several times, but I guess that’s not the catchphrase.)

  2. Did you ever figure out how to get the treasure chest from the octopus? Or how to open the safe? I think those are the only two puzzles I did not solve. ROT13 them if you can.

    • I never solved the safe. I did solve the octopus.

      Progressively more explicit:

      1.) Gur fbyhgvba vaibyirf ivbyrapr.

      2.) Bayl lbhe obql naq ab bgure vgrzf ner vaibyirq.

      3.) Jerfgyr gur bpgbchf.

  3. Thanks for the clues to the octopus puzzle. I’m kicking myself for not getting it myself!

    Incidentally, I figured out the safe combination. I’ll Rot13 the clues below.

    1. Gur fnsr pbzovangvba pna or sbhaq vafvqr gur tnzr, ohg va n irel gevpxl cynpr.
    2. Cnl nggragvba gb gur reebe zrffntr jura lbh gel gur jebat fnsr pbzovangvba.
    3. Cnl cnegvphyne nggragvba gb gur ynfg yvar bs gur zrffntr.
    4. Lbh ner ybbxvat sbe gur irefvba ahzore bs gur tnzr lbh ner cynlvat. Nal vqrn jurer gung pna or sbhaq?
    5. Nyy gur jnl onpx va gur ortvaavat bs gur tnzr, gurl gryy lbh gb glcr ARJF sbe vasbezngvba nobhg gur irefvba lbh ner cynlvat.
    6. Vf gurer nalguvat va gur ARJF cntr gung ybbxf yvxr n fnsr pbzovangvba?
    7. Gur fnsr pbzovangvba vf gur qngr ba gur irefvba ahzore!

    I thought that would give me a perfect score, but it turns out I was missing another treasure. You may have found this one, but here go two clues just in case:
    1. Sbyybj Jver vf abg hfrq whfg sbe svaqvat gur frperg cnffntr.
    2. Bapr va gur frperg cnffntr, pbagvahr gb Sbyybj Jver sbe n srj zber fperraf hagvy lbh svaq gur ynfg gernfher gung ryhqrq zr.

    Even after all of that, I only got 435 out of 440 points. I just submitted my almost complete solve on CASA / solutionarchive.com if anyone wants to take a look (and let me know what I’m missing!).

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