Video Game: Pick Up The Phone Booth And Aisle
The Town Square
You are standing in the middle of a pretty town square in the center of a nondescript England town. Like most any other nondescript New England town, there's not much to see or do here, but maybe you'll find something amusing and enjoyable to do.
A shiny metal phone booth sits in the center of the square.
PUTPBAA is a spinoff of the minimalist Interactive Fiction
"Pick Up The Phone Booth And Die
" and the differently minimalist "Aisle
". Just as in the latter, you can only make one move, and then the game ends. You have a host of other commands to choose from, and each one leads to hundreds of Alternate Endings
, each one sillier than the last.
The game can be downloaded here
, or played online here.
It has also been "ported"
PUTBAA uses the following tropes:
- All Just a Dream: Mocked with "wake".
- Anticlimax: "Yay. You jumped."
- And the Adventure Continues
- A Winner Is You
- Becoming the Genie: Try to "Bunk In" the phone booth and see what happens.
- Bittersweet Ending: Several.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: Try "wave".
- Cargo Ship: Invoked. Several endings imply romantic involvement between you and the booth. Others aren't so subtle.
- Cataclysm Climax: Well let's see... among the "Game Overs" include death by meteor, death by the wrath of god, death by "ICE STOOOOOOORM", death by Cosmic Horror...
- Cutting the Knot: >WIN "Okay." ***YOU WIN*** Or so it seems.
- The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: Granted, while there are over 200 endings to the game, the ending archive fails to list the word 'set' as a possible verb.
- Remember how typing "Inventory" causes your pants to explode? Try typing Disarm Pants, Disleg Pants, Throw Pants, Remove Pants, Eat Pants, and then Deactivate Pants.
- Die, Chair! Die!: "Fight", "smash", "destroy", and other similar words cause the protagonist to try to destroy the booth. It ends badly for him, unsurprisingly.
- The Dog Bites Back: There are a number of ways to kill the phone booth. Unfortunately, there are even MORE ways it can kill you instead.
- Downer Ending: Most endings end badly for the protagonist.
- Diabolus Ex Machina: "Cook Booth" ends with a safe falling on the protagonist.
- "Burn Booth" ends with God smiting you with lightning.
- Everybody Lives: Many of the "Happy" endings are like this.
- Everything's Better with Princesses: Type "look southwest".
- Exact Words: Some of the endings like to misinterpret commands like "tie booth". This can be confusing to those who try synonyms like "fix booth".
- Gainax Ending: "Eat Booth" results in a mishmash of references to Aisle and So Far (bizarre enough that even the parser feels obliged to comment); "Kick Booth" seems like a utter non-sequitur unless you've played Losing Your Grip.
- Happily Ever After: Occasionally.
- Have a Nice Death
- Interface Screw: After using undo as a verb, no matter what keys you press the game will type out, one letter per keypress, "drive" and execute that command, to much confusion if it was an accident.
- Even more confusing since "drive" is not one of the recognized commands in the game proper.
- This is a shout-out to Adam Cadre's Shrapnel, which pulls the same trick.
- I Can't Use These Things Together: Lampshaded; if you try to perform an action with a direction, you get creative bug responses. Waltz <direction>, for example, gets you the response, 'Your new name is Waltzes with Bugs'.
- I Will Punish Your Friend for Your Failure: If you try to 'waylay booth', you get a flashback to your 15 years of training in the Terran Galactic Defense Force, where you were apparently motivated by constant threats of kitten-pulverization.
- It's a Wonderful Failure
- The Hero Dies: A LOT
- The Last Straw: Watch what happens when you type "fill self".
- Logic Bomb: Type in "enter self".
- Love Hurts: Choosing to "Love Booth" causes the phone booth to give you a big hug. Did I say big hug? I mean it falls on you and crushes you.
- Mind Screw: Kick the phone booth.
- Also, look southeast. Could possibly be a reference to the IF game Shade.
- Try to undo without performing an action first.
- Also try waltz with me.
- Multiple Endings: The entire point of the game.
- Never Heard That One Before: Try entering "xyzzy", and a disembodied voice will complain about being summoned every time someone decides to make this reference.
- Non-Standard Game Over: Many times, you don't exactly die, but the game ends anyway.
- Noodle Incident: Type in "walk" and the phone booth somehow impregnates you. And you end up in the Gobi desert.
- Now What?
- Oh God, with the Verbing!: Type "open booth".
- Reticulating Splines: "Smock my knickers" gives you this phrase.
- Shout-Out: To lots of other Text Adventures. And pop culture. And all sorts of other stuff.
- Many endings describe the plot of movies or books.
- Schrödinger's Gun: Depending on the ending, you may end up being a MIT student, Maxwell Smart, or even Superman.
- Sexy Discretion Shot: 'Touch booth'.
- Sitcom Arch-Nemesis: In 'Examine booth', David Morgan-Mar appears to be this for the player character.
- So Once Again, the Day Is Saved: Two endings cast you as Superman of all people!
- Stuff Blowing Up: Type "blow up booth" and "blow up self".
- Take That: Sort of. Typing "sleep" prompts this response:
"Looks like another cold night coming. Your best bet seems to be the phone booth. Huddled inside, you catch some winks as best as you can before the cops move you on. The half bottle of cooking sherry you stole seems to help. Next day, the struggle begins again."
AC:*** You were the CEO of pets.com ***
- Title Drop: Do it! You'll win! Really!
- The Many Deaths of You: Again, the whole point of the game.
- Turbine Blender: If you try to "fly", in a paragraph-long reference to Photopia.
- Twist Ending: Type "Wait"
- Then there's the above Take That, where a depressing paragraph about you, a poor man trying to sleep, actually having been the CEO of dot-com bubble company pets.com.
- Wall of Text: You get one by typing "about".
- Weddings for Everyone: Yes, one of the endings involves a wedding. In it, you marry the phone booth.
- You Can't Get Ye Flask: Some verbs (love, undo) resolve differently depending on whether you specify the phone booth as the target or not.