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Maplewood Junior High

  • Currently 3.9/5
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Rating: 3.9/5 (116 votes)
Comments (25) | Views (22,188)

Maplewood Junior High

DoraIn Carmel Games' point-and-click puzzle Maplewood Junior High, your teacher wants you to do an assignment, but the problem is she expects you to do it on a bunch of ancient computers that haven't seen the light of day since 1996. Can you complete your homework despite the literally old school equipment... and the fact that you're woefully unprepared? To play, just click around to interact. The cursor will change to red if you can use something, and people you can talk to will display a mouth icon when you mouse over them. To use something you're carrying, just click it once to highlight it in your inventory, and then again wherever you'd like to use it onscreen. Then, if you're extra experienced, lay facedown on the floor for a while feeling the crushing weight of the years because computers that would still be more modern than the ones you learned to type on in school are considered to be relics. Anyone have a rocking chair I can borrow? I need to go sit on my porch and yell at clouds.

Despite a bafflingly out-of-place anti-global warming rant and crazy strawman character at the start of the game, Maplewood Junior High feels like a big step up for Carmel Games, especially in terms of visual quality. Characters animate fluidly instead of with jerky, rigid movements, and the voice acting is very well done. The '90s vibe of the "teaching material" and the room itself is almost painfully accurate, I can tell you that much. The puzzles are about as bizarro as you've come to expect from Carmel Games, requiring you to use some items in increasingly silly ways, but some of them, like the computer repair, are actually fairly clever and well-implemented. It's short and goofy, but in the way Carmel Games fans have come to expect, and with a significant upgrade in several ways over their previous work that promises even bigger and better things from them down the road.

Play Maplewood Junior High


korvarthefox December 10, 2014 12:00 PM

I found the global warming stuff very offputting, and quite frankly the main character is a horrible, horrible person. Several of the object interactions make no sense. Especially the

tennis ball - why does this bird attack?


The "good spirit" thing

. Neither were foreshadowed in any way, making them even more baffling.


....Yikes. The climate change stuff grated on me so much I almost didn't finish the game. The devs clearly have their own agenda there, and it's kind of put me off playing any of their stuff again. I also agree that the game play is just... weird. Anyway, did not really enjoy this one :/


can't wait for this one :)


Well, I'm stuck.

I need to get a picture for the presentation. According to the walkthrough, I'm supposed to use the tennis ball to kill the spider behind Miller, but every time I do, I miss the spider. What am I supposed to do to make sure I actually hit the spider?


I can definitely respect that, Dora! I always go into Carmel Games stuff expecting a weird game play experience for sure, and this one was much more smoothly animated than previous puzzles. But I could just feel my eye twitching with every sarcastic mention of global warming. It is very much out of place! I work in climate change research, and it's become very disheartening to deal with anti climate change folks. I love escape and puzzle games (the sillier the better!) and like most people here, I enjoy using them to unwind my brain after work. I wasn't expecting to have something that makes me grind my teeth pop up no less than 5 seconds into the game, haha.



Open a window, then try again.


I was stuck at the same point. You need to do something first.

Try clicking on the window and interacting over there


I have no relevant comment on the game itself, since I haven't played it yet, but I am DYING laughing at the description of the computers being more modern than the ones we learned to type on and lying facedown to feel the crushing weight of the years. Like, tears in my eyes, so loud that my husband downstairs was concerned about the strange noises, kind of laughing.

Thank you for that fantastic bit of levity.

Patreon Donator Infant Tyrone December 10, 2014 11:21 PM

I'm so glad you said that the way you did re: the newer "older" computers. I felt this weird twinge of "hey, kid, those used to be top of the line! We'd never seen anything like it!" I actually read the review in my rocking chair.

Patreon Donator Infant Tyrone December 10, 2014 11:26 PM

And I'm choosing to read the global warming bit as satire.


walkthrough in the works? :)


Going to have to agree with everyone else on the global warming thing, that was weird and made me kind of uncomfortable. Don't get me wrong, Carmel Games makes some fun games and they churn them out impressively quickly, but with this and "Into The Wild" (that game they did where the main objective was to find a way to communicate with big-lipped, leopardskin-wearing African tribesmen who communicated solely by saying "mugga bugga" over and over again) I think I'm going to have to add them to the "people who are far more technically talented than me but who I would not want to have a conversation with in real life" pile.


Catherine and SonicLover:

Thanks for the advice, but I have already opened the window and taken the egg... now if I click on the window, it just says "I shouldn't close it." I guess it's just a glitch in the game?


Waaaait a minute...

So it turns out there's a different window to open. XD Thanks, guys, I've got it now!


for those that might or might not know this about the game

I had to resort to a video walkthrough which I really don't like because it goes too fast,but I still would like a text walkthrough if possible, but anyway, the things that actually happen in the game compared to the walkthrough are random. If the video said one of the guys said "you're crazy" what it might say when you talk to him is "yeah right." also the computer puzzle shapes are random. if it showed a circle at the top in the video, it might be a square at the top when you are looking at it.

anyway,just thought i'd let you know in case you weren't aware.


I don't understand the comments about the 'global warming' things. Carmel Games makes funny games, often controversial. The global warming is one of these controversial things. You people feel uncomfortable, because you believed in humanity-caused global warming for very long time, and at the end it's just a hoax. And what? It's not the first time and definitely not the last when we are cheated. Don't get me wrong, our climate is changing. But does it mean that it's because of us and does it justify to add more and more CO2-taxes? No. It's just make some people rich.
So chill down and enjoy the game instead of thinking if it's political correct or no.

Nebulesque December 13, 2014 4:29 PM

Maybe this is really shallow of me, but here goes: I started the game without reading the review (sorry Dora!), as a decent point and click is always good fun. The language options came up (which I was pleasantly surprised by... It's nice to have the option), and began the game in earnest. After the first few lines, I sat baffled, and clicked back on to JIG to read the review and see the comments. I've concluded that I have no interest in even beginning this game. Which makes me sad.

Patreon VIP abfdrumz December 13, 2014 6:41 PM replied to fortress

"And at the end it's just a hoax?" You can state that with certainty, @fortress, beyond all reasonable doubt? After all, it's not as though we as mere humans are capable of influencing our environment, or that being "skeptical" about AGW has ever "made some people rich."

Sorry...I've got no interest in turning JIG into a forum for environmental politics, believe me, but as one of those "you people," I felt as though that much needed to be said.


Comment not intended to fuel a debate about climate change/AGW. That doesn't belong on a casual games site, IMHO.

I was going to observe that the graphic on Arlene's screen is quite similar to one I've seen on the site Skeptical Science - which is one of the "debunk the hoax" sites (plus some of the info the main character puts in his presentation). I don't think the opening is meant as an anti-global warming rant at all - it sets the background for the crazy character.

It's a light diversion - a little illogical, but worth the 10 minutes or so you might put into playing it.


(Sorry - when I said "debunk the hoax", I meant "explain how the science shows climate change is happening and its due mainly to manmade CO2 emissions".)


So we have a single-speech bubble anti-global warming rant from a total slacker looking to cheat his way through the assignment, and a crazy battleaxe of a teacher who spends a single speech bubble screaming at him about it. I'm supposed to side with either one of them? This really ruined people's gaming experiences? Come on.

If this game indeed gave you the vapors or made a previous fan swear to never play any of their games again, I really think you have issues. Are we going to need to put trigger warnings on these?

Hell, and just when I thought we were making progress because nobody stamped their feet over him ripping Apple products for being overpriced and whatever other slams he made, lol.


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