The (not so) infamous cat hair moustache puzzle.

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The (not so) infamous cat hair moustache puzzle.

Postby el_pombo » Wed Oct 08, 2014 8:11 pm

Throughout the years the “moustache puzzle” from GK3 has been mocked as ridiculous and absurd by many gamers. Some even went so far as to call it “the puzzled that killed adventure gaming” (clearly an overstatement).

Even the team developing the game reportedly hated that puzzle, and it was only made because the original puzzle, written by Jensen, could not be implemented with the 3D engine being used. It was therefore a technical limitation that led to one of the most hated puzzles in adventure gaming history.

When I first played the game it never really occurred to me how illogical that puzzle might be. While I was trying to figure out what I had to do to solve it, the steps I had to make actually made some sense in my head. After all, Gabriel and Mosley bear almost no resemblance to each other. One could try to artificially create that resemblance by forging a common prominent characteristic to trick a clearly farsighted person. In this case, a fake moustache was created. It doesn’t really matter if Mosely didn’t have a moustache, the idea was only to trick the bike rental owner and he wasn’t acquainted with Mosley anyway.

Couldn’t Gabriel have found a place to buy a fake moustache in Rennes-Le-Chateau? Being a small village as it was in the game, it’s not that unrealistic that no fake moustache was readily available.

Why would Gabriel have to use Mosley’s outfit? He surely had to switch clothes in case the rental owner remembered what he was wearing when he talked to him the first time. But why not got back to the room and switch to one of his own clothing sets? Maybe Mosley’s thick coat would also help to hide Gabriel’s body complexion and make it harder for the owner to recognize him.

A bit far-fetched, but… not totally irrational.

Anyway, although I didn’t like that puzzle, I think it’s “infamy” has been largely overrated.

What do you think? :)
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Re: The (not so) infamous cat hair moustache puzzle.

Postby Datadog » Thu Oct 09, 2014 2:31 am

The "Cat Mustache Puzzle" is notorious, but I think it's mostly because online reviewers chose it as their "go-to" example whenever discussing moon logic in adventure gaming. In their defense, the puzzle's steps are silly and simple enough to make for funny subject matter, but it's far from being the worst puzzle. It's become an overused example when the genre's been churning out equally (if not moreso) confusing puzzles since years before or even today (i.e. cheese in KQ5, donkey in Discworld, Nuts 'n Bolts 'n Gravy in SQInc, etc.)

I remember figuring out the cat puzzle without a walk-through, but it was through trial-and-error more than anything. It was one of the Serpent Rouge puzzles later on that finally cracked me.
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Re: The (not so) infamous cat hair moustache puzzle.

Postby BBP » Thu Oct 09, 2014 5:49 am

It's not the worst puzzle in GK3, I'd like to give that award to Suppuration X. It was a throw-it-in puzzle when it was found that the original moustache puzzle couldn't be animated. In the original version, Gabe was to spray down a crow's nest (lined with black fibers from a rug) with a spray gun: the water blast didn't work. The sound files and some of the images survive and can be found on the game's disk.


About your suggestion about the clothes: the rental owner would probably remember that gold blazer best about Mosely.
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Re: The (not so) infamous cat hair moustache puzzle.

Postby Spikey » Thu Oct 09, 2014 6:05 am

Datadog wrote:The "Cat Mustache Puzzle" is notorious, but I think it's mostly because online reviewers chose it as their "go-to" example whenever discussing moon logic in adventure gaming.


This is probably true. In the old days, we thought it was very okay to be stuck for days or months in adventure games, it just came with the genre, like dead ends. I remember not being able to finish Quest for Glory 4 for a long, long time, because I never slept in the Inn that much, and missed one vital note. Hell, I remember being stuck in Pepper for a while, because I could not figure out I had to fake a wound with a tomato to boil hot water.

Gabriel Knight 3 was developed in a sort of a transitional phase. There were no dead ends, but it was still sort of accepted by the development team to do this kind of illogical thing with very few hints. They should maybe have installed hints on this particular mandatory puzzle, especially since that button is useless outside of Le Serpent Rouge and the end game sequence, AND...
..it is kind of early in the game to be stuck. The game has not even begun to unfold its deeper layers, and if you are stuck in a boring town with not much to do, I can imagine people would be turned off thinking "okboringbyenow".

The worst part for me was stealing Mosely's passport, it took me SUCH a long time to figure it out.
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Re: The (not so) infamous cat hair moustache puzzle.

Postby BBP » Thu Oct 09, 2014 7:20 am

The Hint button also works in the same way as the Hint button in GK2: on the map, it'll highlight the locations you still need to visit to finish the chapter.
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Re: The (not so) infamous cat hair moustache puzzle.

Postby Spikey » Thu Oct 09, 2014 7:51 am

Really? Never even knew that lol.
At any rate, at the time of the cat hair puzzle it would make perfect sense, as you don't have the map yet.
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Re: The (not so) infamous cat hair moustache puzzle.

Postby el_pombo » Thu Oct 09, 2014 10:00 am

For me, the worst part was the armchair of devil, after Mallory and McDougal were murdered. I didn't want to use the game's built-in hint system and, in fact, I didn't even want to use the "think" button, but to move ahead to the next day you HAD to use the "think" button with the indentations on the ground... It took weeks before I finally gave up and used the mandatory "think" button.
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