Warp: Swimming and Sailing   25 comments

With IFComp, I’ve managed to plow through about 10 Twine games and 0 text adventures. Warp occupies enough headspace that I have trouble fitting anything similar in, but other interactive fiction seems to occupy a different brain category. (I will probably do reviews, but as a “compilation” where I will compare a bunch of games at once.)

A “majestic Spanish Galleon” which patrols the seas. If you’re swimming, it doesn’t bother you; if you’re sailing, it fires cannons. Warp has the largest amount of ASCII art I’ve seen in an adventure game. Both mainframe Zork and Stuga included a handful, but I’ve seen something like 30 pictures in Warp so far.


I’ve opened up quite a bit of map and found many more treasures, although I haven’t done a run yet where I’ve gathered them all at once. Part of this has to do with a nasty discovery Roger Durrant made.

I had (without too much difficulty or fanfare) discovered that in the Bank of Warp, the vault opens at a particular time (hinted at by a note in the Director’s office). I was then able to sneak in and grab some gold bullion, delivering it to the display case in the Warp Museum and netting a total of 35 points. Roger subsequently tested out the same solution and found he couldn’t do it; essentially, if you miss the time window near the start for entering the vault, you have broken the game.

I am hence somewhat paranoid about other potential softlocks, and since Warp is fairly open, I’ve got various save games running in parallel as I thwack at the various mysteries and puzzles. Most notably, there’s a lamp with a battery having limited time, just like Adventure/Zork/Acheton, and I’m worried once all the uses are taken into account the time limit is tight. I still remember in the last part of Acheton having to walk through darkness to the endgame (saving repeatedly and restoring when I fell into a pit by chance); with Warp I have no such way out, because if your lamp gives out in darkness you die right away.

My major lamp use went into mapping a maze.

I first thought this was going to be a “well-behaved” maze where directions go back and forth in the direction you expect, and indeed the first portion of my expedition went that way. The map was laid out in “micro-floors” with up-and-down stairs connecting a little randomly, but each floor being normal. There was a treasure which took a little effort to find, I mopped up most of the available directions, and that was that.

However, in one of the last exits I checked (in a pair of rooms marked “Kilroy Was Here” and “Kilroy Was Here Too”) the micro-floor idea continued, but there were now many more “punishment” one-way exits. By that I mean if you went the “wrong way” you were sent far off course, essentially guaranteeing there was no way to find a good route at random. Structurally, this seems intended as a fake-out — trying to coax players into giving up at finding the first treasure and assuming the maze has nothing else to yield.

Secretarial Pool.
This is a large room with a high ceiling, glass walls, and a large, deep, swimming pool in the center. There is a sign next to the diving board that reads

(Executives Forbidden)
Please Wash Toes Before Entering
the Pool.

There are two ways out, to the east and back to the north.

I can see the following:
Swimming Pool
Postage Stamp

Incidentally, JUMP IN POOL is death.

You gracefully execute a perfect swan dive into mid air. In your great haste, however, you failed to notice that the Warp Building Maintanence crew has drained the pool to keep it from leaking into the Operating room below. But they are efficient, and will undoubtedly scrape up your remains before refilling the pool …

In an adjacent room there’s a hole that you can pick up, and move to other places (!). I haven’t worked out the full mechanics of how this works. I was too busy otherwise trying to map out the ocean.

Haunt’s 7 by 7 by 7 cube of water was technically larger, but this still trumps anything I’ve previously played in terms of elaborateness. You can swim out alone (although if you are out more than 3 turns, you get attacked by sharks). There is the occasional stable position which resets the “shark counter” — like a fog bank — so I was able to use those to do produce quite a bit of the map.

Some locations are just too far from shore and you need a boat. There is a boat sitting out in the open and I’m fairly sure using it wasn’t really intended as a puzzle, yet it’s very easy to miss how to launch it. You can go DOWN and find another room.

You find yourself in the main cabin of the boat. The walls here are dark paneled, and there is a well-used bunk along the port side. A small wooden cabinet is built into the wall at the bow end of the bunk. At the aft end of the starboard wall is a large closet, and the remainder of the room sports nothing of interest other than a few shelves. A few short steps at the aft end of the cabin lead back up to the main deck, while next to them another short stairway leads down, apparently to a lower deck.

I can see the following:
Wooden Cabinet

There’s a sail in the closet; take it upstairs and RAISE SAIL and the boat will become mobile.

While reefs are no threat while swimming, they smash up the boat if you hit them while sailing. I find the dual-meaning to the locations intriguing. (There actually seems to be triple-meaning because diving underwater seems to be possible, although I haven’t tested it yet — hopefully next time.)

I will be traveling so the next post might be delayed a little. If you need some reading material in the meantime, there is a spreadsheet that is collecting the current reviews for IFComp.

Posted October 6, 2019 by Jason Dyer in Interactive Fiction

Tagged with

25 responses to “Warp: Swimming and Sailing

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. Well I must admit I missed that blessed pool Jason; I really thought I had mapped all the locations in the Warp building.

    Have you found the alternative light source yet? This seems inexhaustible fortunately.

    There is another awful pun a la Quondam in the ocean.
    I only found this quite by chance but think of how you might figuratively describe fog and an object you have will yield another area that I am stuck in at the moment.

    I hat to restart as you know and now have 30 treasures stashed.

    One other odd part is the mailbox. I have used the letter envelope and stamp and put them in the mailbox but they are never collected.

    I shall be back into the fray later today.

    • Shot in the dark, but does the mailbox let you RAISE FLAG?

      I won’t be able to test anything until next week.

      • I think I have the answer to this now Jason and it is another pretty nasty trap. There are in fact two stamps, the one in the manager’s office and the postage stamp that lies deep in the Warp building. It would be very easy (as I had previously) to use the first one, which is in fact a treasure worth five points, on the envelope. If you do the game is unwinnable as you cannot remove it from the envelope once you have stuck it on; the postman never picks it up from the mailbox. Of course you have to use the postage stamp on the envelope. Pretty sneaky stuff.

  2. Another possible way to make the game unwinnable: The round button will take you to the roof level where the pipe and globe reside, but you can visit and return from this location only once; the second time you hear a “Crunch” and are told that the button is broken. You should only visit here after you have repaired the fountain and got some water. The triangular button toggles the two lifts in the south corridor between the penthouse and the Warp building basement. Oddly you seem to be able to visit these locations and return more than once.

    I think blowing the flute renders it useless and a non treasure as well. As for an alternate light source (ROT13)

    Lbh pna eho gur pelfgny fcurer naq vg tvirf lbh yvtug sbe sbhe zbirf. Guvf nccrnef varkunhfgvoyr. Or pnershy nf vg qbra’g gryy lbh gung vg unf tbar bhg.

    • Well after using the correct stamp on the envelope and placed it in the mailbox with the coupon inside the postman duly appeared with a package a few moves later; rather hilariously I was swimming underwater at the time. These Warp postmen deserve a pay rise for their dedication to duty.

      The game has unfortunately crashed several times when I have tried to swim down when over a reef. I am hoping this won’t be the case when I swim down in a location with something interesting contained therein.

      I am also being followed by a rather irritating monitor lizard after I purloin its Jade Egg. It even follows me into the sea but not onto the bus.

      If you enter the hole it will take you to random locations including the top of the pyramids where the glass sphere is which will enable you to take it if you have the carpet with you.

      I am now rated an Amateur Brownie with 800 points but still pondering the swimming pool amongst other things. Maybe use the tar to fix the cracks?

      • Could you rot13 me a hint on the stone disc thing?

        Probably not posting until Tuesday.

      • The stone disc reminded me of the Bank Of Zork in that I solved it more by brute force than actually having a eureka moment.

        Lbh unir gb eho nyy guerr rzrenyqf hagvy gurl tybj vagrafryl. Gur oyhr bar frrzf uneq gb trg tybjvat. V whfg enaqbzyl pubfr gur frdhrapr naq zber ol yhpx guna whqtzragf gurl riraghnyyl nyy tybjrq. Lbh pna gura chfu gur qvfp gb bcra gur fgnvejnl.

        Lbh pna gura chg nyy guerr rzrenyqf va gur gebcul pnfr. Abgr gung lbh pna bayl gnxr gurz naq qebc gurz jura gurl ner tybjvat.

      • Got it once I realized the rubbing was actually accomplishing something (the game saying rubbing it does nothing is just a tad deceptive when it can cause other emeralds to light up).

        I just mapped it like it was a physical maze (I did LOOK EMERALDS every time I tried a rub).

  3. It appears that the hole sends you to random places in the game, including some I haven’t even visited yet. These include inside the pyramid and inside a torpedo laden submarine. It’s hard to know whether this is seen as “copping out” as you can take some treasures without having solved the puzzles to get them. I think I’d prefer to solve the problems properly, but it’s hard to know why the authors would have included the hole in the first place if you weren’t meant to “cheat.”

    • Incidentally, if you try to go down again after going down once in the boat, it says something about not being able to reach a torpedo room. So I think the submarine might be down there (not on the boat, but under it).

      I do think it quite possible the hole is the only way to get to it, still. Also, plenty of games have alternate solutions and routes so I wouldn’t call it cheating.

  4. Is the boat in any particular location when you swim down twice and receive that message Jason? Incidentally, the only way I could find to exit the “Bank Of Fog” with the pearl is gb fjvz gb gur fubny r, r, ar sebz gur cenvevr juvyr jrnevat gur ubyr, gura tbvat a vagb gur onax, bcravat gur fnsr naq gnxvat gur crney, qebccvat gur ubyr gura fnivat. Ragrevat gur ubyr jvyy enaqbzyl gnxr lbh gb n ybpngvba onpx ba gur znvaynaq jurer lbh pna qrcbfvg gur crney naq fjvz onpx gb gur fubny gb erpynvz gur ubyr.

    • Not swim down twice, just try to go down when you are in the room with the notebook.

      You can *wear* the hole, that’s hilarious.

      I’ve finally getting around to putting together a “complete run” … I think I’ve got *most* of the puzzles down but the last couple are still going to be a pain.

  5. I’ve stashed 37 of the 49 treasures and attained 960 points at this stage. Of the remaining twelve that I know about I have been unable to successfully stash the mink slippers, the scarab ring and the memoirs. And that s0dding lizard is still following me about.

    • Mink slippers

      Hfr gur ubyr (vg’f n yvggyr pbzcyvpngrq ybtvfgvpnyyl)


      Hfr gur ubyr (gur ubyr vf fghpx nsgre gung fb vg unf gb or arne gur raq)

      Scarab ring

      Lbh arrq gb xrrc gur zhzzl sebz trggvat qrfgeblrq (gura lbh jba’g or phefrq).

      No clue on the lizard. Maybe he’s just your friend now.

  6. I have recently managed to start the engine in the submarine by putting the warponium in the cannister but I’m not sure what this actually achieved.

  7. Thanks Jason. I had actually taken the memoirs but, as you lose the hole at this point, I thought maybe there was an alternate solution. I must say it is odd to have one object (the hole) as an answer to so many of the problems. By the way, have you tried the tar in the cannister on the submarine?

    • I haven’t been able to get to the submarine. (That’s what I’ve been working on.)

      I assumed maybe I dived somewhere based on the nautical chart, but no dice so far.

      Did you find a way to get in other than lucky use of the hole?

  8. Apart from the hole route no. I have seen a mast sticking out of the water in a few places but when I swam down there was nothing to see. When in the submarine you can put the warponium in the cannister and press the switch to start the engine but then it starts smoking and switches itself off. I wonder if you add the tar to the cannister the engine runs more smoothly. I also can’t see any exit from the submarine. I am wondering if you need to prime the engine then leave and dial 3339999 to launch a torpedo.

    A few other things left open include the Warp institute with the professor, the Obelisk and the Oracle on the mountain. I have obtained a computer printout detailing the methodology of constructing a machine with the two cables and the framastat but I haven’ t tried that yet.

    I wish I had more time to really go for the end.

    • I wouldn’t mind figuring out the legit pyramid method too.

      I haven’t seen an Oracle. I’ll look for that.

      I just unlocked an Underworld area (you haven’t mentioned that yet). Trggvat gurer vaibyirf gur pbecfr.

      • The Underworld area Is rather odd. The Obelisk is at the end of it but you can’t seem to leave that area by conventional means. This is another potential softlock as the ledge crumbles away if you revisit.

      • Yeah, I had to use the magic carpet.

        You can “enter” the obelisk and see a different obelisk but it’s pretty weird. Somehow I got an ebony cube — I think maybe I “de-evolved” my diamond somehow?

  9. I found that area about a week or so ago and it is the second area (along with the Warp basement) that has a grate. I am wondering if it is possible to unlock either or both. Presumably the two aren’t connected as they are far apart on the map and the former has a river flowing into it.

  10. It’s interesting how we both seem to be getting stuck in the same places; I think the game is getting tougher now as the last three hundred points or so come into view. I am going to have a few hours at it tonight so I will let you kinow of any progress. On a humOurous note, have you tried putting the koala bear in the polisher or giving it to the gorilla?

  11. Another thing that strikes me as rather odd in this game is the amount of objects that I haven’t used, i.e. the banana, peg, brick, leeverite, ladder and so on. I would include the tar but I’m not sure if you can drop it after you take it or attach it to another object..

  12. I have finally worked out how to enter the pyramid by slightly more conventional means Jason. lbh pna hfr gur ubyr ba gur clenzvq gb ragre vg

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: