Monday, February 17, 2014

Case Study No. 1244: Unnamed Female Librarian (Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?)

Carmen Sandiego MSX
MSX version of the PC game Carmen Sandiego! Check it out on http://www.icon
Added: 7 years ago
From: SLotmanRJ
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National Treasure Stolen from Lima

The treasure has been identified as a silver llama statue

Female suspect reported at the scene of the crime

Your assignment:
Track the suspect from Lima to her hideout and arrest her!

You must apprehend the thief by Sunday, 5 P.M.

Good luck, private eye.

["Lima, Monday 9 am" appears on screen]
["Lima is Peru's capital and largest city. A well-known landmark is the Archbishop's Palace, a reminder of Peru's colonial past" appears on screen]
[the player clicks the "search" icon, then selects the library]
["Lima, Monday 10 am" appears on screen, then cut to a female librarian (caucasian, long blonde hair, pink collared shirt)]
REFERENCE LIBRARIAN: She checked out all the books about Montezuma.



This is the earliest version of Where in the World Is Carmen Sandiego? as well as the first product in the entire Carmen Sandiego series & the beginning of Carmen Sandiego. It was released in 1985. The game was distributed with The World Almanac and Book of Facts, published by Pharos Books. Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? was included in some software packages with the Amiga 500.

There was also a second version of this game in 1986 that did not have the almanac copy protection but disk based copy protection. The "Deluxe" expansion pack version was released in 1990.

The chase
The goal of the game is to track Carmen's villains around the world, arrest them and ultimately arrest Carmen herself. The player begins the game by first going to the country where the crime took place and then obtaining hints from various sources on where the thief went next, leading to a chase around the world to find the thief before time runs out.

Each case begins with the user being alerted that a spectacular theft has been committed. Starting by first traveling to the scene of the crime, the player is given several opportunities to collect clues about the suspect's next location, which come in the form of pun-filled word play about the target place. There are thirty countries that can be visited in the game and each is identified by the name of a prominent city, though this city is not always consistent with the image of the country shown in the game. For example, Lima is given for Peru, but the game instead shows an image of Machu Picchu.

If the player travels to an incorrect location, they receive nonsensical clues and will have to backtrack to the previous location to try again. If the player travels to the correct location, a simple animation of an obvious but otherwise harmless V.I.L.E. henchman lurking across the screen is played. The gameplay continues to repeat in this manner as the player travels from location to location several times before catching up to the criminal.

The case will be lost if the user "runs out of time". Throughout the game, the time is shown as the hour accompanied by the day of the week and every action taken in the game (questioning a witness, traveling to another location, etc.) causes a few hours to elapse. At the start of the game a "deadline" is given by which point the crook must be arrested and, if that time is passed, the case is lost and the crook escapes. The times given in the game do not take changes of time zones into account.

The warrant and the arrest
The player will occasionally be given information on the suspect, enabling the player to exclude all but one of the suspects in Interpol's database of V.I.L.E. members. Once the player eliminates all but one suspect, Interpol issues what the game describes as an arrest warrant against that suspect; in real life, Interpol can issue only a "red notice," with issuance of the actual arrest warrant being the prerogative of the local jurisdiction. If a player enters a combination of attributes that eliminates all possible members of the database, the game will inform the player to that effect and refuse to issue any warrant.

Once the player reaches the final location, the animation of the nearby V.I.L.E. henchman becomes more aggressive and implies imminent danger and any clues the player receives simply suggest that they should watch their back. Investigating further clues lead to a chase scene and the attempted apprehending of the thief which results in an off-screen fight, which will be successful if and only if a warrant for that particular suspect was issued. If there was no warrant issued, or the warrant issued is for someone else besides the suspect, the police will lose the fight, allowing the thief to escape and causing a lone remaining policeman to walk away defeated.

Each successful mission is noted in the player's record and they will occasionally go up in rank. Before being promoted, the user had to correctly answer a geography question with the help of a reference book that was included with the program. This was included as a form of protection against disk copying. Each rank gives harder assignments with more locations to travel to before arriving at the final one. In the final case, the culprit is Carmen Sandiego herself and apprehending her lands the player in the hall of fame.

This is a list of the locations visited in the game, organized in alphabetical order by country. Note that cities are identified as they were in the game and that they are followed by the country that the city would have been located in at the time the game was produced.

* Buenos Aires, Argentina
* Sydney, Australia
* Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
* Montreal, Canada
* Peking, China
* Moroni, Comoros
* Cairo, Egypt
* Paris, France
* Athens, Greece
* Budapest, Hungary
* Reykjavík, Iceland
* New Delhi, India
* Baghdad, Iraq
* Rome, Italy
* Tokyo, Japan
* Bamako, Mali
* Mexico City, Mexico
* Kathmandu, Nepal
* Oslo, Norway
* Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea
* Lima, Peru
* Kigali, Rwanda
* San Marino, San Marino
* Singapore
* Moscow, Soviet Union
* Colombo, Sri Lanka
* Bangkok, Thailand
* Istanbul, Turkey
* London, United Kingdom
* New York, United States



Specific Clues

These are the most useful clues. With very few exceptions, these clues will tell you exactly where to find the thief. If there is an exception, the semi-useful clues will be marked with an asterisk, and relevant information is provided that the bottom of that section. If you get a clue that does not fall under a category in the above list, you will find it listed under the building where it can be received here. To conserve space, the city is the main entry.

The details that point to a specific city are listed under that city's name. To find the clue you're looking for, use Ctrl+F. These lists also indicate that certain buildings are better to go to for clues. Museums and libraries are by far the most useful, as other buildings give these clues less often.

Warning: "Volcano" is a horrible keyword to search for. Although every clue can be uniquely identified, some are very similar, and others are exactly the same but from different buildings. Be very careful if you choose to try to use a volcano clue. This is why all clues containing the word volcano are marked with a percent sign (%).

Library Clues
These are books or subjects that the thief is interested in. They are almost always found by going to a library.

* animal husbandry in ancient Crete
* Spartan lifestyle
* the Hellenic Republic

* Assyrians
* how to drill an oil well
* Mesopotamia
* Mesopotamian pot shards

* rainfall for the Sahara
* Tuareg creation myths

* "Anna and the King of Siam"
* Chulongkorn
* teak forests

* Croatian wedding customs
* history of the Gypsies
* Magyars

Buenos Aires:
* a guide to restaurants in Tierra del Fuego
* gaucho romance

* a navigator's map of the Nile
* how to make mummies
* solve the riddle of the Sphinx

* ancient Taprobane
* the Veddah people

* Kurdish kinship systems
* political intrigue in the Byzantine Empire

* geology of the Himalayas
* Gurkha art
* history of the Gurkhas

* genetic research on extremely tall people
* mountain gorillas
* Pygmy creation myths

* Francisco Pizarro
* geology of the Andes
* Incan agricultural practices

* a genealogy chart for the House of Windsor
* Celtic legends

Mexico City:
* Aztec purification rituals
* origins of the Mayan calendar
* Toltec art

* Jacques Cartier
* Sir Arthur Mackenzie
* the migration of whooping cranes

* a vanilla bean cookbook
* the perfume industry

* a collection of Ivan the Terrible's love letters
* Georgian history
* Tsarist genealogy

New Delhi:
* field guide to cobras
* migratory patterns of wild yaks

New York:
* a subway map
* history of skyscrapers
* modern art
* socio-economic consequences of skyscrapers

* bibliography of Ibsen's plays
* guidebook to the fjords
* Viking lullabies

* Frankish rule
* textile and fashion design

* Shang dynasty art
* the life cycle of silkworms
* Wuchan Uprising

Port Moresby:
* statistics on volcanic eruptions
* taipans

* a novel to read while in a hot spring
* %guidebook to volcanoes of the world%
* history of Danish colonies

Rio de Janeiro:
* map of the Amazon Basin
* thin-spined porcupines

* %European volcanoes%

San Marino:
* a "Most Serene Republic"
* ceramic production
* history of postage stamps

* economics of rubber plantations

* aboriginal art
* Captain Cook
* metabolism of tiger snakes
* temperament of Tasmanian devils

* Commodore Perry
* Emperor Jimmu
* %research on volcanoes%
* samurai warriors
* Shinto shrines



In the original 1985 "Carmen Sandiego" game, a library is one of the default buildings where the player can talk to witnesses and receive clues about the location of the thief.

Despite the fact that libraries can appear in any of the cities around the world, the sprites used to represent library staff only come in three varieties:

* Archivist - man with balding black hair, checkered purple jacket and a black tie
* Reference Librarian - woman with long blonde hair and a pink sweater
* Circulation Clerk - woman with short black hair, red sweater and glasses

Sample Quotes
"I saw the person you're looking for and he said he was writing a sonnet about a 'Most Serene Republic' ... "

"A reliable source told me she checked out a book about thin-spined porcupines."

"I heard he drove away in a vehicle flying a red, green and white flag."

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