Old News '94: Tim Schafer Ditching Ham Sandwich PuzzlesS

It was just 15 years ago that designer Tim Schafer had to tell a reporter how one of his games differed from the other, and to do so he invoked the use of bread and mayonnaise.

You are reading Kotaku's once-weekly (thank goodness) journey back to yesteryear. This week, I wanted to find some old Tim Schafer news stories, since I know Kotaku readers love the man.

What was the lead brain behind 2009's Brutal Legend like when he was young? What kind of snappy quotes did he provide reporters?

Schafer met with a reporter from The Australian back in '94 to talk about Full Throttle, an adventure game described by the paper's reporter as "Mad Max meets an alternate universe, or something like that."

Schafer told the reporter: "Its not even set in our universe. The only strict rule was that it had to be cool. Very cool."

But such vague comments don't get to the heart of it. Tim Schafer was the man known for the puzzle-heavy and funny Day of the Tentacle. Full Throttle looked different, but The Australian needed to know if it would play differently.

Schafer conjured an imaginary ham sandwich and started discussing the difference between Tentacle protagonist Bernard Bernoulli and Throttle hero Ben.

"As far as the main characters go, it's like this: Let's say Ben and Bernard both walk up to a door. It's locked. The only tool they have to help them get through the door is a ham and cheese sandwich on white (bread). Bernard would inspect the keyhole and see that the key was still in the lock, sticking out the other side. He'd lubricate the floor with mayonnaise from his sandwich, and slide a piece of bread under the door. Then he'd take out the toothpick and use it to push the key back out the hole so it would drop on to the bread and then pull the bread back under (the door), and open the lock with the key. Ben would eat the sandwich and kick down the door."

That helped. And so it was even in the mid-90s that Tim Schafer could make his games sound more interesting than the average fare. Keep it up, please.!

Worth noting, though not Schafer-related: The Australian also checked out a Star Wars game during their investigation of LucasArts' then-coming line-up. They reported the following: "LucasArts promise that the gameplay for Dark Forces will be a lot more interactive than that in Rebel Assault, and that the games graphics will make its predecessor look childish - if that's at all possible."

If you have a figment of the past you'd like Kotaku to belatedly blog about, just say the word.

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