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Animal Crackers


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Rating: 4.2/5 (52 votes)
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Animal Crackers

Animal Crackers, programmed by Muhammad Abdul-Rahim with art by Renée P and music by Louie Zong, is a simple but adorable puzzle game/adventure where you play a tie-wearing mouse desperately trying to assemble all the ingredients for a presidential birthday party that will satisfy not only the president herself, which means figuring out what a Libeartarian such as she would enjoy. Using the [arrow] keys to move and [A] to interact and advance text, explore the world and find the food, decorations, guest of honor, and more you need to make your party a success... though considering how many options there are for each, that's easier said than done. You can see the descriptions for items and people you're standing next to in the bottom-left corner, while picking up an item of a type you're already carrying (say, another drink or snack) will swap the two, so take your time and return to party central when you think you have everything sorted, though some items are hidden. There are four endings to uncover, but the biggest appeal is definitely exploring the quirky world and interacting with all its weird inhabitants, like the shark who regrets the stereotypical anti-shark movie roles of his youth, an excitable okapi otaku, and many more. Animal Crackers is a ridiculously cute and cheery game, with a great soundtrack and colourful visual style, making it a perfectly pleasant little game that wants to make you smile and is practically begging for a bigger, more fleshed out adventure in the same world and style.

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9 Comments

This is a very lovely game with an interesting fetch quest mechanic with the use of animals and politics. Based on how well you can interpret the comments of the NPCs, will determine the outcome of your choices.

WALKTHROUGH (Partial)


There are three times of the day on which some events occur. The only way to make time advance is to interact with objects and speak to people whom need help. (Speaking to NPCs whom present items does not progress time)

EVENTS:
Morning - the shortest period of time which is the only time you can invite "Brother Bear"

Noon - The "Golden Delicious" apple is swapped for the "Pear"

Night - The "Sheep Gardener" will no longer interact with you.

Carrying a fruit will have the "Tanuki" appear between the crow & Crane / Dragon shop

Items and their outcome:
I believe that every category has a "Best" outcome, but I either haven't found them through fetching or haven't properly deduced it below

    Main Course:

Strangozzi Pasta - Neutral
Honey - Bad
Bibimbap Rice - Good
Gumbo - Good
Salad - Poor

    Drinks:

Milkshake - Best
Coffee - Bad
Island Water - Good
apple Cider - Good
Milk - Bad
Fruit Punch - Good

    Snack:

Croissant - Good
Crisps - Good
Golden Delicious - Poor
Pear - Poor
Either Jam - Good (Best?)
Panini - Good
Eaten Fruit - Bad

    Dessert:

Popsicle - Good (Best?)
Bubble Tea - Good
Icebox Cake - Good
Cheesecake - Bad
Banana Split - Good (Best?)

    Decor:

Birthday Banner - Bad
Party Hats - Good
Flag - Good
* Lily of the Valley - Best
Sunflowers - Good

    Entertainment:


Nintendo - Good
Anime - Best
Comedy DVD - Bad
Chess Piece - Neutral
Cardboard Boxes - Neutral (Good?)

    Gifts:

Fishing Rod - Bad
Bathrobe - Poor
* Goddess Statue - Best
Yellow Tie - Good
RPG Board Game - Good
Sunhat - Good
Necklace - Good

    Guests:

Koala & Kangaroo - Neutral
Tanuki - Bad
Shark - Best
Brother Bear - WORST

* The Goddess statue is acquired bu talking to Olivine (Black dragon in the shop) then to Ren the king fisher (Bird on the top far left) then the flying Panda (Top Middle) the to Olivine again.

* Lily of the valley is an item that's hinted in the game at but I have yet to uncover it. This is the only item that is time sensitive.
Start by talking to the gardener and take the sunflowers (Bottom right), then speak to the turtle twice (top left.) Take the Island Water (bottom middle, speak to the squid in the shop) then speak once again to the gardener. at this point she states that she is hungry, but no openly available food will appease her. The description when you stand in front of her states that she likes "peaches" but there is no peach related food to be seen.
She will stop interacting with you once it becomes night (all the cats and dogs leave the party hall)
OR if you interact with the apple/pear.

I would also like to note that the empty counter by the wind whale (Top Right) seems suspicious, but I currently lack any leads.

Reply

This game is far too tedious and there are way too much work to do to get the best ending. Half the animals would have made this much better. So I'm not gonna waste anymore time on it.

That being said, I came across an item, Ruesiken, which you don't have and which I believe to be the best item for its category, though I haven't tried it.

The shark mentions that the president isn't fond of meats. You've already tried the salad, but there's a veggie kharkog(?) in the black dragon's shop, and because it's a vegetarian dish I expect this to be the best choice.

Reply
Ruesiken September 16, 2015 1:30 AM replied to ThemePark

I forgot to add that one it seems.
She state's that she's never tried it before and doesn't really elicit an overly positive response. I'm not convinced it's the "Best" available option.

Reply

Walkthrough update

To get the "Lily of the Valley" you must get the milk then talk to the goat next to the milk. He'll tell you that the gardener likes pears. You can turn the pear into jam/jelly and give it to her to receive the flower.

Also if you were to wait and not pick up the fruit until late in the night, you'd receive a pineapple. Turning this into a jam/jelly would be the best snack option, but this would negate the lily of the valley.

The best ending is still just beyond grasp.

Reply

I've got it! Your work figuring out the biggest questline brought it all together, Ruesiken. Best ending spoilers below:

An awesome birthday is one where you get the most cool stuff. But cool stuff does not a BEST birthday make.

Hint 1:

After you receive the Lily of the Valley, the gardener tells you she thinks you can help the Prez's family.

Hint 2:

The tortoise, when you're asking him for advice, explains that the power of the Lily of the Valley is to inspire strong emotion.

Hint 3:

Many of the items that the Prez responds well to are the things that make her nostalgic.

Solution:

You need to leverage the Lily of the Valley to bring the president's family back together.

Not all the item categories have a nostalgia item, but there five items in particular you need:

Drink: Chocolate Milkshake (The orangutan tells you that the bears both get this)
Snack: Croissant (The brother is eating one)
Decoration: Lily of the Valley (Brings out strong emotions)
Gift: Sun Hat (The starling explicitly recommends it)
Guest: Brother (Duh)

The combination of those five items (the other three don't matter) will allow the siblings to finally reconcile, and give you the BEST BIRTHDAY!

Reply

Wow. That was sheer, outright brilliant.

I love the fact that

in order to seriously figure out the best ending (without reading the combined walkthroughs of both Ruesikan and Pingcode - huge thanks to you two!), you MUST play the game at least twice in order to get the best ending. After all, Brother Bear MUST be collected first before starting the Lily of the Valley subquest (since he only appears in the morning) and anyone playing casually will probably exchange guests since it was quite bluntly obvious that Brother Bear didn't want to be in the party. And once Brother Bear is exchanged, he can NOT be recruited again.

In fact, it isn't until the player can complete the Lily of the Valley subquest that the player can even start realizing what is really necessary (which, by this point, is at the end of the game, as the Lily is always the last item that could be obtained). Yes, certain characters (ie: the Oragutan and the Sterling) most certainly allude to this, and they do not have the same time limitations as the Lily or the Brother, but it was only fully revealed with the Gardener.

I think that the worst bit was the croissant. Yes, the Brother was right next to it. But nowhere in the text was is clear that he was eating it, and no other NPC even says anything about it. This would make sense after the Lily and realizing that the Brother is necessary, but again, that is quite a leap of logic there.

Reply
Pingcode September 16, 2015 10:46 PM replied to Anon

The other hint that I've now noticed is that

All the nostalgia items are associated with people who are intimately familiar with the Bear family.

The starling, orangutan, owl, and sheep all give you personal and valuable advice regarding the president. The owl is just the most oblique about it - he just tells you that the president doesn't like bitter drinks like coffee, which also implies that the president is a frequent enough guest that she's a known face to him.

Also the brother hanging out in there, which hints that she hangs out there too, because the orangutan mentions them both visiting for chocolate milkshakes too.

It's a solution with a lot of weak hints scattered throughout the game - there's multiple ways to puzzle out the nostalgia items, but you do have to make an informal logical connection.

Reply

It's a cute little game. I think I did pretty well the first time around:

Used the more obvious clues to choose the chocolate milkshake drink and sun hat.

Chose the statue because it seemed alright.

Had the shark guest, because who wouldn't want a shark as a guest?!

Chose the vegetable whatever sitting in the shop with a dragon, panini snack and some kind of cake dessert.

It could be tedious to play through all the endings, so somebody should go ahead and show all the cute little responses to the end - e.g. "panininini, panonono..." for the items.

Also, I am a little embarrassed of how long it took me before I realised there is information about an NPC/item that appears in the bottom left hand corner when you're near them. I still don't know what meaty looking dish I first picked up for a main.

Reply

Just for the lulz, I've purposely invited

Brother Bear

the the party without getting the items Pingcode pointed out.

At first glance, yes, what Rueskan wrote is completely correct :

inviting Brother Bear without ALL the nostalgia items will AUTOMATICALLY set the game to WORST ending.

However, that ending, in itself, is a very important clue as well.

This ending, without the completing the Lily subquest, is probably the player's other big clue as to what they truly have to do in order to get the best ending. They do mention the Brother leaving the family due to their mother's death, which is what separated the two. Even though the President then chastises you for "poking your head where it doesn't belong" before swearing that she will do all the planning from then on, the player might finally realize that there is such a problem - and perhaps they really should be poking their heads where they shouldn't just to get it resolved.

It just shows another layer of complexity that this game has set up to create the overall story. The funniest thing though is that this is a story that your player avatar (the mouse) SHOULD know - the nostalgia NPCs (as well as the President should you invite Brother Bear) make this point that the mouse knows of the President's personal life - this makes sense as it should be presumed that being a member of politics, the mouse would know this stuff. However - the player does NOT. Which makes this game so interesting - the process of the player figuring out the story that the in-game characters already know - then piecing out what needs to be done in order to set things right.

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