Palace in Thunderland: Pennies From Heaven   12 comments

My biggest breakthrough of late is that the singing sword is much more interesting than I originally realized.


I had previously found I could KILL JABBERWOCKY to chop it down, and I could also SING to get a special message.

THE SWORD RUNS THROUGH THE SCALES, “LA,LA,LA,LA,LA,LA,LA,LA…”

I was testing if the sword would calm down Young Tweedledee and Young Tweedledum, and got the LA,LA,LA message again. For fun I tried wandering around singing at other things, and realized many of the rooms of the game have a unique message when the singing sword is used. At least some of the messages seem to be hints for solving puzzles, and in one room singing nets a treasure!

Let me work through this area by area, starting with the basement that has the melting metal box:

Workshop:

THE SWORD SINGS, “JUST LIKE ME, I WANT TO BE…CLOSE TO YOU!”

This clearly is a reference to the carpenter in the same room wanting to be friends with the walrus.

Laundry Room:

THE SWORD CROONS IN A TERRIBLE FRENCH ACCENT, “MAY WE, MON SEWER, C’EST SEEBONE ENDEESH LOKAY SHOWN!”

I don’t know what this is. The Laundry Room is suspiciously random and empty, and this is a tight enough game that might mean something. If you speak the French with a lisp does it come out as some phrase in English?

Dusty Corridor:

THE SWORD SINGS, “DUM, DUM, DRINK TO ME ONLY WITH THINE EYES, PUSH ON, PRESS ON, FOR A BIG SURPRISE!”

This is a hint for the room adjacent, as you can move the wine rack to find a wine bottle that is a treasure.

Music Room:

MAGICALLY THE INSTRUMENTS BEGIN TO PLAY, AND THE SWORD SINGS THE PROLOGUE TO “PAGLIACCI”. THUNDEROUS APPLAUSE IS HEARD AND A GOLD RECORD DROPS AT YOUR FEET!

I maybe should have found this one earlier, eh?

Parlor:

TUM TUM TUM TUM
CATCHA BEASTIE WITH A SEINE, WOVEN STRANDS THAT FIT THE BRAIN…
TUM TUM TUM TUM…

This is in the room with the “FAMILY HAIRLOOM” and sure sounds like a specific hint for what to do with it.

Arboretum:

THE SWORD SINGS, “EVERY TIME IT RAINS, IT RAINS PENNIES FROM HEAVEN….

This has a reflecting pool and counts as “outside” the palace. I haven’t seen any rain.

Maid Quarters:

THE SWORD SINGS IN A COLURATURA SOPRANO VOICE, “WHO WILL TELL THE QUEEN HOW REVOLTING WE ALL ARE?”

Butler Quarters:

THE SWORD SINGS IN A BASSO PROFUNDO VOICE, “BOOM, BOOM, THE QUEEN MUST MEET HER DOOM!”

“How revolting we all are”, heh. >LEAD REVOLUTION

Small Hallway:

…MOOD TLOVER, WIDER THAN A MILE…

I don’t know. It’s between the Maid and Butler rooms.

Lavatory:

THE SWORD SINGS, “HONEY DON’T LET ME RUB YOU THE WRONG WAY…’CAUSE I GET THEM PINKS IN THE NIGHT.”

There’s a vial with pink medicine here. I haven’t found a use for it yet, but you can’t eat it without dying, it’s meant to be applied externally.

Pink Guest Room:

THE SWORD WHINES, “I SAY, INSPECTOR CLOUSEAU! THERE’S TREASURE TO BE HAD BUT THE CHABLIS HAS GONE BAD!”

Yellow Guest Room:

THE SWORD SINGS, “…’ROUND THE OLD OAK TREE, IT’S BEEN THREE LONG YEARS, DO YOU STILL LOVE ME…”

Blue Guest Room:

THE SWORD SINGS, “SONG SUNG BLUE EVERYONE KNOWS ONE…”

Green Guest Room:

THE SWORD SINGS, “IN THE VALLEY, HO-HO-HO, GREEN GIANT!”

The pink message (invoking the movie The Pink Panther) seems the most likely to be a hint of these, as opposed to a song reference or advertising jingle.

Guest Bathroom:

THE SWORD SINGS, “I GET MISTY…JUST HOLDING YOUR HAND!”

The walrus to match the carpenter.

Top of the Turret:

THE SWORD SINGS, “SHAKE, RATTLE AND ROLL…”

Probably a clue that the Tweedledum and Tweedledee rattle can be used as a ball in croquet, but I already suspected that.

Formal Garden:

THE SWORD SINGS, “BE PREPARED…”

This is right next to the encounter with the Queen of Hearts.

So, I still need to ponder over these and get some plan of action going. I think I’m close to the end because based on the point system there are 8 or 9 treasures to find, and I have 4 of them; at the very least I doubt there’s much more in the way of new locations, if any. I’ll try to push for a victory post next time.

One last thing: I got the dormouse to run up the clock as shown in the screenshot, which makes it dead as a dormouse. I still feel bad, though, and I haven’t had anything useful come from this scene.


Posted February 16, 2021 by Jason Dyer in Interactive Fiction

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12 responses to “Palace in Thunderland: Pennies From Heaven

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  1. >If you speak the French with a lisp does it come out as some phrase in English?
    I’d go with: “Mais oui, Monsieur, c’est si bon in this location.” “C’est si bon” is a famous French chanson, so something apt for the sword to sing. The only place for a clue I see might be in “see bone”.

  2. Also “c’est si bon” literally means “it’s so good”. Not sure if that’s relevant.

  3. The only word there that isn’t misspelled is “c’est” pronounced “say” so what if you SAY “see bone” or “si bon” in this location? I also wonder if you might find a sewer.

    You probably know this, but the small hallway song is “moon river” (change significant?) and the yellow room song seems like it’s “tie a yellow ribbon round the old oak tree.” (A big hit for Tony Orlando and Dawn whose other hit, “Knock Three Times,” was also about ostensible communication through nonverbal symbols, and honestly seems to go all the way to de Clérambault’s syndrome as described in Enduring Love.)

    “Runs through the scales” also seems like it was a hint as that’s literally what the sword does to the Jabberwocky? In D&D and related games such as nethack the Vorpal Sword can decapitate opponents in combat but in the original it’s pretty clear that the beamish boy stabs the Jabberwocky and once it’s dead removes its head for a trophy.

    • MOOD TLOVER
      MOON RIVER

      Hmm, is “D TLO” standing for something? (I will double check my spelling but I am 99% sure I reproduced that correctly.)

      Maybe having something to do with setting off the cards? There are bored red and black card peasants hanging out near the queen, so really might need to start a revolution.

  4. The line about the chablis going bad seems like it might be a hint for using the strange jugs to avoid wasting the wine on that puzzle? Also, sorry to Paul and Herr Rau for repeating your points!

  5. I agree that the mangled French seems to amount to something like SAY SEEBONE IN THIS LOCATION (possibly with some variant on “seebone”).

    I note also that the wine being “Lafeet” when it should properly be Lafite, if the reference intended is to Château Lafite Rothschild, might also be some kind of pun or clue to something.

  6. This whole “singing sword” digression almost seems worthy of a chapter in “Nord and Bert”, a whole realm of musical clues!

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