Alias 'The Magpie'

by J. J. Guest profile

Episode 1 of The Magpie

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Number of Reviews: 5
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful:
Very fun and (mostly) fair game in the classic style, October 1, 2020
by RadioactiveCrow (Irving, TX)
Related reviews: 2-3 hours

I very much enjoyed playing this game. It is a parser-based, puzzle-filled game in the classic style of Infocom's "Deadline".

You play a gentleman thief (think Danny Ocean) and master of disguise, on a mission to steal a priceless jewel (and anything else you might find of value along the way). You roam about a two-story manor and the surrounding grounds, trying to find a way to get at the prize, while also having to solve a few minor mysteries along the way.

The size and length of the game are easily digestible. I was navigating without a map an hour into the game and it took me a little over three hours to complete (and I was definitely barking up the wrong tree a couple times). The puzzles were very fair (with one notable exception). I felt like there were plenty of clues to guide you along the way, and also a few red herrings to keep it from being too easy. The game is also very funny, with some off-the-wall characters, hilarious situations and always polished and clever prose.

The game, I think, pays homage to Deadline in a number of fun ways that I found enjoyable, including a (Spoiler - click to show) somewhat hidden room between two bedrooms, balconies that you had to access via ladder, and a curmudgeonly groundskeeper.

For my one problem with the game, I thought there was one puzzle that I never would have solved on my own without the walkthrough. Even the in game hints didn't do enough to get me to the solution. So if you are stuck and you've been over everything twice and you still don't know what to do next, see below for my own Invisiclues to help you get through it. But don't let that scare you, you should definitely play this game!

1)(Spoiler - click to show)
Are you trying to get your hands on the giant cucumber? If not, then I would just recommend examining everything and trying to "get" everything again, because these clues are cucumber-centric.

2)(Spoiler - click to show)
What if I told you there was a way to get the cucumber without finding the key to the padlock?

3)(Spoiler - click to show)
Good, because there is no key to that padlock. So what else can we try? In case of cucumber emergency...

4)(Spoiler - click to show)
...break glass. But wait, if the under-gardener hears us then the jig will be up. How can we break the glass quietly?

5)(Spoiler - click to show)
Maybe if we put something soft over the glass before we break it to muffle the sound. But we haven't been able to procure anything soft for the job, so what else do we have? Maybe the newspaper?

6)(Spoiler - click to show)
Okay, but plain newspaper won't really muffle it at all. What if the newspaper were wet?

7)(Spoiler - click to show)
If you are an American like me, you probably have no idea what treacle is. Apparently you can eat it, but mainly, if you put newspaper in it then it will turn the newspaper into a silencer for your clandestine glass breaking operations. Give it a try and good luck with the rest of the game!

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