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Tim Schafer

Writing Update #3: Let's brainstorm Locations together!

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Or. Um.

AN OCEAN MADE OF CLOUDS. So like, you can swim in it but still breathe but it's like foggy and I dunno.

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These are all great!

- Cattery on fire

- Squid breeders' show

- Carpet store

- Antarctica ... without the ice!

- Mime school

- Fridge full of rotting food

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A hidden room in which everything is VGA or EGA looking and then the main character says "Oops, wrong door" and then shuts the door so hard an ad-lib soundcard 'thunk' effect is heard.

That should surprise some people!


That's an awesome idea! :)

Actually it would be fun to have a scene where someone is undecided about two sets of colours... for clothing perhaps and they have two choices which are the cyan/magenta/black/white OR black/brown/orange/yellow combinations as an inside joke on early adventure games that started out in EGA. :P

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Bedbug land.....they live in your bed having created a intelligent world. humans don't know about their superiors intellignence because they are too small to care about......

things they fear most are washing day when they all escape to the floors to avoid being put in the washing machine.......their nightmare would be washing AND vaccuum day at he same time. they call it foretold in prophecy.....

Let the bedbugs bite....

I wrote this in a slightly drunk state so it makes no sense :)

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parallel world (worlds...) maybe something like a world run by hats that use their humans as slaves,something like matrix but instead of agent smith there are super intelligent, harry potter-like hats!!! either that or a world run by cats! thats even better than hats!!

maybe you could travel between different realities, and maybe even different gameplay!!!!!

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- Sketch land, where everyone lives in fear of the whims of the horrifying art student god

- Where everyone lives a flat existence on the pages of a book

- The 10th dimension

- Folds of cloth

- Inside a watch

- Under a couch/bed

- Where everyone is made of balloons

- Inside a candy factory

- Everyone lives on the spokes of a bicycle wheel

- Lint world

- Hover world, where everything has to be tethered down

- Someplace where emotions are so rare that only the rich can have them and only the bravest emotion hunters dare venture out to search for them

- Silent film

- The Whaler's Academy of Performing Arts

- That secret colony on Saturn's rings

- The blood stream

- A evil villain's dapper moustache

- That place you go when your talkative aunt tells that story you've heard like 100 times

- Where earthquakes come from

- The core of the sun, that's actually a balmy oasis if anyone bothered to look

- My grandma's jewelry box

- Your grandma's jewelry box

- Where stuffed animals go when they're discarded

- A goblin apartment complex

- The wormhole junk yard

- DRY ice level

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Hello brave travelers!

Let's talk about exciting environments! Place you've never gone to but always wanted to visit. Places you're so afraid of that you know you'll never actually see in your life. Places you can't go to because it's physically impossible. I'm making a big list of places like this to pull ideas from for our game, and I want your help.

I like to include settings and locations in our games that feel new, or at least new to games. For instance, when I was given a set of black velvet matador paintings for my birthday one year I thought, hey, now a world made of black velvet--that's something I haven't seen done much in games yet. We've all seen fire levels, ice levels, etc. But not black velvet.

No, you don't have to send me a black velvet painting (although I wouldn't complain if you did). What I want from you is simply all your location ideas, please! You never know what might inspire a new puzzle or chapter in the story. I have some ideas, but I'm going to need a lot of them so please throw some of your extras my way.

I know you don't have enough information about the game yet to know what kind of environments it needs. But that's the whole point. You are not limited by any preconceived notions of where a story like this should go. I want crazy ideas from unchained brains!

What I can tell you about the story is that, similarly to Psychonauts, it's a very flexible world that can include almost everything. So go nuts!

Here. I'll start.

Fire level (no, been done)

Ice Level (definitely not)

Inside Tori Spelling's nose (probably some construction work going on)

A snake farm

Cat Breeders' Show

Squid prom

Place where everyone walks on the ceiling

Mosaic tile world

Ice Level (damn, why are these things so tempting?)


World of talking thimbles

Jell-o Maze

Now you talk.

How about a level set in a Southern Drink-house filled with old Blues musicians?

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The swampy cult place in the short story Call of Cthulhu would be cool.

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- A Spanish Naval Settlement.

- One of those abandoned Islands with Nuclear Plants from the 1970s

- Shanghai during a rain storm

- An Island Fort with a brilliant view of the Ocean

- Chicago

- New Orleans during a festival

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- One of those abandoned Islands with Nuclear Plants from the 1970s

That would actually be a pretty cool setting for an adventure game that has a parallel setting, where you can tell the story before and after what happened.

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A place everything is made up and the points don't matter

I laughed SO hard.

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-Beard Land. Where everyone and everything has some sort of facial hair.

-A world where you're inside your own inventory.

-A world where you're a laser dot beign chased by a cat.

-A world where dinosaurs never went extinct and continued to evolve into our times, hopefully into something cooler than a chicken.

-A world where anything anyone says becomes true.

-In the crawl space.

-A retirement home for circus performers.

-A world of sentient vegetables and there's a mad vegetarian on the loose.

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- Flatland

That would be so dangerous! Screaming women everywhere so we don't get stabbed by accident! Or are you talking about a different Flatland?

Whoa, after 25 pages, hopefully I'm not repeating too many things.

Um... locations for the brainstorm bin:

- A brainstorm

- Car crash testing facility

- Clouds/Sky/Floating... because floating in nothing seems like an awesome idea

- Molecules or molecular structures

- Microscopic world

- Never ending corridors

- Anything Escher or similar

- In between the plaster boards of your walls

- Belly of a beast! Or flaming dragon belly!

- A bottle shop

- On the moon with as many moon related mythologies as you can think of, that means the Chinese longevity story, the mochi pounding rabbit or just a rabbit, being made of cheese, inducing insanity, moon god/goddesses from whatever religions that have one, werewolves... lots of stuff

- Inside a video game, however you want to interpret that

- In a sound effects studio... can't remember the name of THAT studio, chopping watermelons and clicking nails on bowling balls sort of place

- Lots of bean bags

- A cardboard box

- Nothing. As nothing as nothing can get

- World of literals where everything is taken literally

Ok, lots! Liking the ideas seen on other pages so far!

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A hedge maze with criminals caged in the walls

A dog pound for cross eyed retired attack hounds

A pit filled with hygine obbsessive compulsive freaks where grime is a crime

The inside of a giant clock, a town in there that works on how the cogs turn

A steamboat casino al la Maverick, all westerny inside

A cave made of garbage ( or trash, whichever) with mechanical tenticles that add to itself

An alien space castle that crashlanded next to the princesses castle and or generic castle

A gullotine testing facility

A civilisation that believe their god takes the form of a rabbit, and whichever lettuce it eats from decides what laws will be passed

Steampunk environment that actually uses alot of petrol and oil but all the operators claim it is all Steam powered pointing at the big shiny cogs and steam valuves and try and cover up all the coal mining and nuclear waste barrels, non enviro fuels

One of those strange magic the gathering type card game tournements where people are yelling out stuff like ' Super Lead Lined Camel Rush, totally awesome lightning rat +3000 hit points.

A rescue shelter for the worlds dumbest endangered animal the panda-sloth-tuna

A house made from thimbles that converts into a mechanoid tank al la trenc... iron brigade

A town existing in a whirlpool, constantly spinning, so when your house crashes into the post office and they wedge together for a while, you go collect your mail and such, then hope you run into the milk bar

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More! Brain won't stop! What have you done?!

- Plumbing

- Words, writing, pages, like in those old Winnie the Pooh cartoons before he wore a red shirt and the book they were in was turned to the side or upside down

- Help, I'm trapped in a , or a factory that makes Help, I'm trapped in a related goods

- A courthouse

- Recycling facility

- A smithy

- Radio waves, by extension sound waves like crazy songs and VibRibbon (weird game)

- Disguised as a robot/penguin/moose/something else in a colony of robots/penguins/moose/something elses

- Hall of mirrors only the mirrors show alternate realities of you

- Ant colony

- Blind

- Working in retail

- Afternoon tea with monocle wearing polar bears, can be wearing waistcoats or top hats for extra pomp

- Old folks home

- Night market with strange foods

- A secret stash of secret illegalities

- The underbelly of the internet

- World of string

- World of reflective surfaces, what's it reflecting?

- Craft store

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A living city. A city so ancient that it got life of its own: streets, walls, towers, all alive. They don't talk nor move, just stand there, feeling everything.

I think it could create a very unique atmosphere. Everyone is aware of the city's life, and feel its presence. It may create uneasyness for some, security for others. It could even hold some kind of plot development.

Maybe the only way to get there is by dreaming, until it becomes so real you take physical form. Maybe the city's spirit is someone who instead of taking the form of some inhabitant of the city, took the form of the city itself.

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The Island of Dr. Hibbert (Simpons Haloween Special Number ... no clue :)

In a Harem of aging women (or men) .. everyone has no other problem then, that the skin gets wrinklier every day.. the beauty falls victim to the time.. many cushins, curtains, bed's, maybe a few "toys" are hidden here and there.. ;) It shouldnt be sad or "filthy" i imageing the feeling like in the movie Death Becomes Her (that movie is great)

Cat Paradise

Many balls, strings, everything is soft, lot of mices and birds to hunt, you can get catnip at every corner, every cat it owen personal "can- and door opener" .. huh remebers me it my home... (im the can opener)

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A world where men are REAL MEN, women are REAL WOMEN, and small fuzzy creatures from alpha centauri are REAL SMALL FUZZY CREATURES FROM ALPHA CENTAURI.

Oklahoma City (I don't think any game has EVER been placed there)

A Styrofoam jungle

Inside a message board

At a tea-party for dragons

A steam-punk cybertopia

Inside a phone booth

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A world where everyone can hear the thoughts of one specific person your entire life. It is considered extremely unlucky to meet them.

A knitting factory.

The aliens who love our radio & TV transmissions so much they have made new episodes. Of everything. Sitcoms, morning talk shows, local news, cooking shows....

The century ship of actuaries.

Inside a parade float.

A spaceship that runs on information.

Dinosaur yacht club.

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The World Beards and Baristas competition

The Million Mullet March

A Monster Mash or maybe some kind of werewolf disco. I don't know how these shindigs work.

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When I went on an Alaska cruise there were are these tiny little islands in the sea, little craggly grey rock structures with pine trees growing on them. I wondered what it would be like to live there for a month.

Other random things:

Riding on the back of an ant's abdomen.

In nothingness


Those cool underground houses in Tunisia. (I briefly considered designing a game around the social dynamics of these places, after seeing some random documentary.)

Gaza strip

outside the game I'm playing (like the player character would step out of the game and start controlling it, or maybe mess around on my desktop)

in freefall (or hang-gliding)

on the top of a mountain (okay, I go here all the time)

as a small child as a member of a French family

Larry Ellison's basement

game developer's office! (yeah, i'm sure that'd be thrilling)

a big empty castle on an island. with lots of bloom lighting. and a windmill.

jam session with Poncho Sanchez

donut hole (i'm not sure what this means; i just really needed to type it for some reason)

surrounded by people who all look up to and agree with me

box of kittens

not weird enough? okay:

people have cows for tongues

everything sinks a foot or two into the floor (like, "solid" is more of a suggestion; it's easier to walk through a door than to convince the door knob to turn)

balloons rule the world

inside and outside are swapped (buildings, people are inside out, but also i perceive the world as inside me, and so does everybody else. when there's an earth quake, we reach inside ourselves for the pepto bismol.)

no communication of any sort (verbal or non-verbal)

i experience time like Dr Manhattan

everything smells weird

ice level

oh! one more: inside the "Take on Me" music video.

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Well, no wonder this is one of the most commented upon post, asking for people's opinions and making them feel important. Tim Schafer, I don't think you fully comprehended the depths of the pinata. I TOO SHALL SHARE MY FIVE AND A HALF CENTS WITH YOU:

The underwater bubble castle of the English octopodes (who wear tophats and monocles, indubitably)

A circuit board for a computer, or whatever it is what looks so complicated and finagley.

An MC Escher painting

Inside someone's beard (perhaps even the beard of a certain Schafer-shaped personage)

An upside-down city of pagodas on the underside of a cliff

A previous world but in a past style (8-bit or something)

Mirror level (so it's been done)

Cubism world

A sentient bowl of spaghetti

An underground city where dinosaurs have developed an advanced civilization

A gray world where the very last bit of color is kept guarded and hidden

A very small world that spins very fast, so day and night keep switching and you can walk to the other side in ten minutes

A world where buildings have legs and cities migrate in great herds

A desert level where there's an abandoned city that fills with sand

On the back of a giant space-turtle which is also an island resort

There's this thing that makes things melt when the temperature is low and freeze when it's hot, so yeah, something with that.

Inside the stomach of the little old lady who swallowed a fly while she is swallowing other things

A world which is two or more thunderstorms that switch polarities with every burst of lightning

World which is just debris circling around a core, so you can jump down levels and have to build bridges and such, maybe with some broken cities or something

A world filled with non-Newtonian fluids

A world where violence is how you say hello

Aaand I promised myself I'd stop after 20 because if I don't I'll just keep going until I get something that actually works. Which will probably be never.

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-The vacation home of the four horsemen of the apocalypse

That's very interesting :) don't think I've seen that one before.

It's funny as well, because I wouldn't expect the four horsemen to ever take a vacation.

You get to see the four horseman taking some time off playing cards with one another at Death's house in the original Discworld adventure game. :)

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Perfume scents Factory with high Profile fashion client (à la Chanel)

They offer à huge variété of scents with amazing names, derived From places noone would guess

They hsve à problem because their secret magic ingrediënt is not available. ITS à liquid From raw nature You would not expect To do well in à perfume

(i Am à brand namer and we actually had one such project. Life IS Like this.)


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For me the worlds would be....

Video Game World ... A Parody of 8bit / 16bit video games ..think Code Monkeys. Have lots of ideas of locations for this....

Prison - Meet Great Ganja (Giana) Sisters (couple of pot heads thrown in jail as part of the rebel alliance for trying to over through the evil N-Pire)

Town Hall - Maybe have to get into a video game party stopped by a Bowser guard who wants to let you in (part of rebel alliance) but cant due to the N-Pire watching (Laiki parody the nintendo dude on a cloud with camera).

Have lots of in jokes and maybe have things like a band stand in the park with random video game musicians coming on (either real or KD Lang Dog, Fire and Ice dog on Piano, Chuck Rock Rock band etc) have statues with famous people in the industry...maybe the whole part of the plot is they are being captured by N-Pire and turned into stone.

Theater District (lots of scope for parody here i.e. Mamma Mia Poster (with Mario) etc) have music hall with a stand up comedian (Sweevos World maybe?) maybe do a monkey island exchange where if you want you can heckle the comedian in true Muppets Statler and Whardolf fashion.. with wrong selection gets a nice joke put down by the comedian.

At Party (lots of famous vid game stars) Maybe have maybe a carpark with all classic video game cars (Outrun, Chase HQ, PowerDrift, Superhang on etc) maybe have scene where Outrun guy in bar and a bit of douche bag... as part of game you get him drunk so get the keys (taken by barman) and then ride off into sunset in the Outrun Ferrari with the that would be a cool way to end a scene lol.

Having an Area 64 (parody of 51) with all the Alien space ships in games (space invaders, Asteroids, R-Type etc) would be cool maybe find a book of tactics to give to the space invader aliens.

Old Persons Home (Old Aged Pixels) full of old and decrepid video game stars .. Pitfall Harry now deaf... The ball in Pong oh and the hero in A2600 Adventure..have him like a Noel Coward luvvie bemoaning how game stars cant do charector acting now lol.

Have tons more ideas on this but I will shut up now :P

ok other worlds would be....

Toon World - Think less Roger Rabbit but more the weird episode of Farscape where they walked into the Looney Tunes universe.

Sci Fi Film Parodies - Bar similar but darker in tone to the one in Star Wars, Back to the Future and Ghostbuster parodies would be cool

Also the idea of walking into the sets of one of your previous games.. maybe even wrangle meeting up with a few of the Characters of Day of the Tentacle or Grim Fandango would be sooooo cool.

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Lot of great ideas in this thread, we liked the dentist office and flight in hot baloon. Little contribution from two gorillas:

Tree nest

...both birds and some apes build nests; imagine "nest for rental", where different inhabitants (chimps, tiny birds) would come and go and make different use of it...

Circular world of desperate creatures catched inside car wheel

...sometimes steady, sometimes rolling, sometimes strange wind appears, sometimes the creatures are sucked out (by human manipulating the valve not carefully enough)...

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Oh another one would be Comic book zone.. not just super heroes but strips like Peanuts, Calvin and Hobbes , Farside, Garfield, Hagaar etc It was done brilliantly in Comix Zone and also fantastically in Comic Jumper but there is still so much scope for this.

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A world on a disc and it's kind of noire.

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