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Sequel to The Fool's Errand is released
October 28, 2012 2:12 PM   Subscribe

The Fool and His Money - The sequel to the 1987 puzzle game The Fool's Errand has just been released, after nearly 10 years of delay and anticipation.

The site in the main link has downloads of Cliff Johnson's old games too.
posted by LobsterMitten (30 comments total) 31 users marked this as a favorite

 
You just gave me chrono-whiplash. Can't wait to check this out!
posted by Aquaman at 2:24 PM on October 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


Sweet! Not that I actually ever finished The Fool's Errand...
posted by leahwrenn at 2:36 PM on October 28, 2012


Forty dollars? How.. optimistic.
posted by graventy at 2:38 PM on October 28, 2012 [3 favorites]


What!

Fool's Errand is the game that got me into gaming as a wee lass. Holy crap! You have destroyed my productivity! Thank you!
posted by offalark at 2:39 PM on October 28, 2012


My favorite part of this is that I remember vividly when he started accepting pre-orders in 2003. I kind of can't believe it has finally come out.
posted by LobsterMitten at 2:43 PM on October 28, 2012 [3 favorites]


Oh, wow. This is awesome news. The Fool's Errand was a huge time-sink for my entire circle of friends back in the day. I wonder if this is going to be equally engaging.

I guess I'll have to find the $40 to spend on it. I'm not much of a gamer, but this is probably right up my alley, and I did spent a lot more on Spore... (waste of money, that was)
posted by hippybear at 2:44 PM on October 28, 2012


Forty dollars? How.. optimistic.

If I had the money to spare for it, this is one of the few computer games I'd consider paying that much for.
posted by JHarris at 2:49 PM on October 28, 2012


Here is a Let's Play of The Fool's Errand.
posted by curious nu at 2:50 PM on October 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


I am still bummed that I cannot play Fool's Errand anymore because I don't have a Mac that runs in Classic mode. I LOVED that game.
posted by tzikeh at 2:53 PM on October 28, 2012


The original sounds cool so I tried to play it and I'm having trouble with the emulator; is there any easier way actually to play the game instead of just scrolling through the screen?

Thanks for this, it seems pretty neat!
posted by Mrs. Pterodactyl at 2:54 PM on October 28, 2012


I preordered this (in 2009) and have been poking at it here and there. So far the puzzles I have to work on are my least favorite kinds from his previous games and I've still never worked out a good methodology to work on them.

I figure it's best to ask you all! Cliff really likes the puzzles where you have an array of buttons with different states and clicking on one changes the states of it and some of the other buttons. How exactly would you work through them?
posted by flatluigi at 3:07 PM on October 28, 2012


3 in Three was fun too (I think?).
posted by fleacircus at 3:08 PM on October 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


Cliff really likes the puzzles where you have an array of buttons with different states and clicking on one changes the states of it and some of the other buttons. How exactly would you work through them?

Sounds remarkably similar to Merlin. I played that until I had cracked it and could solve it pretty quickly.

The way I cracked it was by pushing the same button more than once and seeing what the patterns of changes were, and working from there.
posted by hippybear at 3:11 PM on October 28, 2012


The system requirements, adorably given as "Runs on System 10.4 and beyond," date the whole endeavour.
posted by bicyclefish at 3:17 PM on October 28, 2012


I paid my $40! I'm two and a half puzzles in now.

I have fond memories of solving The Fool's Errand with college friends back when it first came out.
Cliff really likes the puzzles where you have an array of buttons with different states and clicking on one changes the states of it and some of the other buttons. How exactly would you work through them?
For the first one, I made a table of what buttons change what things, noted how many state-changes each thing needed and how long the cycle was, and then pretty much trial-and-errored a solution on paper.

For better or worse, many of these are basically "find out from the program what the puzzle is, figure it out on paper, and then come back to the computer and enter in your solution" puzzles.
posted by dfan at 3:32 PM on October 28, 2012


This is the guy who made 3 in Three? God... I wasted so much time with that game! Great fun, even if I did resort to clicking blindly at some of the spreadsheet levels until I hit the solution... What's really funny to me about the new game is that in 10 years he doesn't seem to have changed anything about the graphics style. I kinda expected with that kind of development time, he was going to end up with a more "modern" look. Guess not.
posted by caution live frogs at 4:30 PM on October 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


I would love to see a live-action trailer parodying Duke Nukem. After the game name explodes onto the screen at the end, this music-less scene would play:

(Fool Nukem encounters the Hanged Man. Fool stands there for a few seconds, and neither speaks. Fool kneels down, unties his bindle cloth, takes off his sunglasses, and stands up holding the cloth and stick with his eyes shut. Fool is seen from the Hanged Man's upside-down point of view from this point on.)
Fool Nukem: If I'm such a fool...
(Fool Nukem ties the cloth around his eyes like a blindfold.)
Fool Nukem: ...Then how am I inventing something?
(WHACK. Cut to black on impact.)
posted by BiggerJ at 4:32 PM on October 28, 2012


I am still bummed that I cannot play Fool's Errand anymore because I don't have a Mac that runs in Classic mode. I LOVED that game.

A few years ago, I was able to play a downloaded ROM of Fool's Errand using a Mac Classic emulator called Basilisk II. I don't know if the emulator's been modernized for present-day operating systems, but that might be worth a try.
posted by Strange Interlude at 5:44 PM on October 28, 2012


HOLY EFF!

The Fool's Errand and 3 In Three were some of the most important games of my childhood. They brought my family together. We spent literal days working out puzzle solutions in notebooks around the dining room table.
posted by GameDesignerBen at 5:56 PM on October 28, 2012 [2 favorites]


Forty dollars? How.. optimistic.

Man, that's crazy talk. What does a two-hour movie cost to go see now? Even with the sunk costs involved, in dollars per hour of entertainment video games are an incredible bargain.
posted by mhoye at 6:18 PM on October 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


I LOVED 3 In Three. As a kid, it completely blew my mind and introduced me to a type of humour I'd never encountered before. I didn't realize A Fool's Errand was by the same developer, but it makes sense now.
posted by WaylandSmith at 6:22 PM on October 28, 2012


Man, that's crazy talk. What does a two-hour movie cost to go see now? Even with the sunk costs involved, in dollars per hour of entertainment video games are an incredible bargain.

I'm not comparing it to movies. I'm comparing it to other games. Indie games even. I paid 15 bucks for FTL. I paid 10 for SpaceChem, probably the best puzzle game I've played all year. I'm sure this game is great, but he could probably quadruple his audience by cutting that price in half.
posted by graventy at 6:47 PM on October 28, 2012 [1 favorite]


Here's instructions from Cliff's site on how to play The Fool's Errand on Windows -- a bit complicated but it seems feasible. If you get it working let us know!
posted by slappy_pinchbottom at 7:06 PM on October 28, 2012


I've been watching the release date for The Fool and His Money get pushed further and further back for years and years. (Checking Wayback, the first announcement was sometime in 2002, he was accepting preorders as early as 2003, and the first announced release date was sometime in 2003 or 2004.) I have to admit, I didn't think he'd ever actually finish the game. (He has announced "final bug fixing", several times.)

$40 makes a lot more sense when you consider that he set that price in 2003, and if he lowered it now he'd either need to (somehow) refund the difference to all the preorderers, or deal with them being very angry.
posted by reventlov at 8:57 PM on October 28, 2012


True believer checking in.
posted by Phssthpok at 1:16 AM on October 29, 2012


Oh, wow! I was obsessed with The Fool's Errand when I was 11 or so (~1990) and have often wondered if I'll ever get to play it again. I'm going to send this out to my friends from that time who are on Facebook.
posted by apricot at 6:41 AM on October 29, 2012


Unfortunately, it's far more likely these days that I'd play it if it were an iPhone/iPad game. I just don't sit down in front of the computer as much these days. I sure have fond memories of the previous games, though; I might buy this just on general principle.

That said, any suggestions for similar iOS games of a similar bent?
posted by RikiTikiTavi at 8:52 AM on October 29, 2012


I am very excited by this. Well, I'm can now allow myself to be very excited by this. Finally.
posted by gonzo_ID at 9:08 AM on October 29, 2012


I can remember playing this when I was young and being really intimidated/scared at the High Priestess. Just looking at the screenshots from the old game really takes me back - the best part of the game was that it was really rewarding to be able to tinker with the different types of puzzles, where a modern game gives you variations on one type of puzzle. The lack of predictable formula made it really unique - you just never knew what was coming next or how you were going to solve it.
posted by antonymous at 11:14 AM on October 29, 2012


This is awesome news! I'd been hearing for years that the sequel to Fool's Errand was in progress, but I hadn't really believed that it was ever going to be finished. I downloaded the teaser and am finding it totally delightful so far. Count me in as being totally willing to pay forty bucks for this game.

(I also finally figured out how to get The Fool's Errand running on Mini vMac, so yay!)
posted by moss at 2:34 PM on October 29, 2012


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