Pick Up the Phone Booth and Aisle

by David Dyte, Steve Bernard, Dan Shiovitz profile, Iain Merrick, Liza Daly profile, John Cater, Ola Sverre Bauge, J. Robinson Wheeler profile, Jon Blask profile, Dan Schmidt, Stephen Granade profile, Rob Noyes, and Emily Short profile

Satire
2001

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Member Reviews

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2 star:
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Number of Reviews: 13
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
The Game That PUTPBAD Was Meant To Be, December 14, 2020

This is an artful piece: the disciplined minimalism of Pick Up The Phone Booth And Die, combined with the rich implementation of Aisle.

The authors of PUTPBAA have, through their concerted effort, realized what was missing in PUTPBAD. With dozens upon dozens of recognized verbs, each yielding a different ending, what we have here is not extensive but rather extremely intensive. Almost any action your imagination might dream up is accounted for in some way.

As a parody of the original PUTPBAD, it works brilliantly. As a game unto itself, it works brilliantly. Perhaps my only complaint is that it does not aspire to the emotional depth of Aisle, but as far as lighthearted comedies go, Pick Up The Phone Booth And Aisle is a shining example of a joke that goes all-out.


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
Whatever you do, don't undo!, April 28, 2019
by deathbytroggles (Minneapolis, MN)

A parody of Aisle and IF in general, several well-known authors teamed up to write this hilarious send-up.

Rob Noyes created a silly, pointless game called Pick up the Phone Booth and Die, which is exactly as complicated as the title implies. Its stupid charm made it more famous than should have been possible, though being released in 1996 no doubt helped. Here you are faced with the same phone booth, only instead of having two possible endings, you again have over 100 possible endings in the same vein of Aisle.

Only play if you are a veteran of interactive fiction (meaning you have played at least ten games, including the aforementioned two this game parodies); otherwise, many of the jokes will go over your head. I replay this every five years or so and it amuses me without fail, including several laugh out loud moments.


Double-undo!, March 26, 2016

The definition of well-implemented. A beautifully simple game in which just about anything you can think of will have a witty response. As someone deeply interested in the intricacies of what can be done with a parser, it fascinates me.

Besides, it's a lot of fun.


0 of 1 people found the following review helpful:
A silly one-action game based on two earlier games, February 3, 2016

Pick up the Phone Booth and Aisle is mildly better than Pick up the Phone Booth and Die and not quite as good as Aisle. It is a parody game. Every action you perform results in some sort of ending.

Most of the endings are pretty funny. Some, though, like 'waylay', have some wildly inappropriate touches. This varied feel comes from the fact that it is a huge collaboration.

Only recommended if you enjoy parody games, such as the Mystery Science Theater 3000 games.


A story of a funny yet unhappy booth... , January 3, 2013
by EatenByAGrue
Related reviews: IF Shorts

I gave "Pick Up the Phone Booth and Aisle" a try tonight and found it quite entertaining.

Some of the endings are really funny. Game play takes place in a single room and your challenge is to interact with the environment to generate unique endings. Play ends after you input a few commands.

Give it a try and see how many different endings you can find!


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
You have migrated!, December 22, 2010
by Aintelligence (Canada)

Of the 'phone booth franchise', it's not too difficult to see that this one is the best, especially with so many people involved in the production. Like the other games, I started by lifting the booth to see what happened, and after, I got a little bit more adventurous with the phrasing. The game, although very short, was obviously very well developed with an outcome for almost anything I put. Furthermore, the outcomes of the phrases were a real riot and very witty. Unlike pick up the booth and dye, pick up the booth and die 2, and pick up the booth and dye etc. Etc. Etc., this game offers sustained amusement as opposed to a one-gag game. I often play this game when I'm bored just to see how many paths I can find. Very repayable and funny.

Along with Aisle, this game is a fun one turner to play (Spoiler - click to show)well, two at most... and should not be missed.


5 of 6 people found the following review helpful:
Oh so silly!, November 2, 2010
by tggdan3 (Michigan)

First I played pick up the phone booth and die. As I began to play this, I had no idea how there could possibly be so many authors. What did the original take, like 10 minutes to program?

But then I tried it. Of course, the responses to the old game's commands were here, and silly. (This game assumes you played the other). Then there are endings for just about whatever you do (or at least whatever I tried to do).

The writing is very clever (and some reminiscent of Monty Python!). What's nice is it's a game about PLAYING, and not WINNING. Just go out and see what they thought of, and what the responses are, instead of trying to get ye flask or finding the torch room, or SUVEH TIA ANI MATO... instead it's just a nice little game to play with, I'd give it my vote for IF game that most resembles a Flash Game you would find on addictinggames.com.

My only regret is that it didn't seem to understand "Dial".


7 of 7 people found the following review helpful:
Hilariously nonsense, witty, free-roaming fun, August 7, 2008
by Maze (Rome, Italy)
Related reviews: one move

This is one of the games you just download and keep there forever, to give it some more try. One turn (yep, it's a one move game), and then fun ensues. And, other than an "ending", you also get an "ending title" which is overtly funny by it's own.
The guys (and girls) that did this not only have a great nonsense of humor (i felt some heavy Monty Python nostalgia here), but they're also very intelligent. Mix the two: you get a blast. Or better: a one second blast (you won't need much more time to reach an "ending").
Only thing that disappointed me: the beginning ends with "a shiny metal booth sits in the center...". But there's no "Booth, stand" command!!! :-D


12 of 12 people found the following review helpful:
The Gateway Drug of IF, February 20, 2008
by Michael Martin (Mountain View, California)

Despite being admittedly wholly self-indulgent and packed with in-jokes, this is actually the work of IF that I've had the most success evangelizing with. It's a one-turn game, so there's no investment of time, the large development team means there is an enormous amount of widely varied responses are available, and a half-dozen or so players each on their own copy will end up bouncing off one another's attempts and - in some cases - actually working out a lot of the basics of IF interaction on their own. It's one thing to read up on how to give commands to NPCs in the standard IF idiom; it's another thing entirely to be rewarded by five or six new endings for ordering the booth around.

And even if they don't, a lot of the in-jokes are pretty funny even without the context. I approached this game entirely ignorant of the newsgroups and the general community in question, and not only did it enthrall me for hours, I laughed until I cried at least twice.

* * * You have read a review * * *


1 of 5 people found the following review helpful:
Not much to it, but it's funny enough, December 29, 2007

This game must have as many authors as it has unique responses (and I do wonder if that was the point?)

Anyway it made me laugh a couple of times, and it didn't annoy me, and that's good enough for three stars in my book. I don't think you need to play Aisle first; but if you like this game, you'll definitely like Aisle.



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