"The most notorious puzzle in Marathon"

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"The most notorious puzzle in Marathon"

Post Apr 21st '14, 17:47

"Take the south elevator to reach the end of the level. Durandal moves you across the river, and you're ready to take on the most notorious puzzle in Marathon."

"This terminal also kicks off the world-famous panel-smashing puzzle, possibly the single most frequently asked question about Marathon Infinity."

Two quotes from Mark Levin's Infinity Volunteers series (the first from the 'Where Some Rarely Go' entry and the second from the 'Thing What Kicks' entry), describing the player's objective in 'Thing What Kicks'.

My question is: why is the objective in this level described this way? What is the context of this, why is/was it considered "notorious"?

This may seem like an incredibly redundant question, but I'm just doing another Infinity run through in conjunction with reading the Volunteers series and this point intrigued me. Anybody any thoughts?
CitizenKane
Dublin, Ireland

Post Apr 21st '14, 19:20

The main thing is a complete lack of hints. The idea of toggling a switch twice to stop a platform may not have occurred to the player by this stage, yet it's required in order to progress. Furthermore, the panels you're supposed to break later on are hidden next to an oxygen charger, and are not very distinctive. A new player will be scratching their head the whole way through this level - I know I was.

By the way, you said you were reading the Volunteers series. I'd also recommend the Tour of Duty series, which I started and is now being continued by Martin. You can find links to many of the posts at marathon.bungie.org
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PerseusSpartacus
Somewhere in the 19th Century...

Post Apr 21st '14, 19:47

Interesting thanks, makes sense, it just wasn't familiar with the context so was wondering if I was missing something.

I've taken a look at the Tour of Duty series, it's really good and I'll be sure to check it out in its entirety. Good stuff
CitizenKane
Dublin, Ireland

Post Apr 22nd '14, 12:36

In fact, I spent about 4 hours last night reading all the Tour of Duty entries until Naw Man He's Close (I stopped there because that's the level I'm at in my current playthrough).

Have to say I thoroughly enjoy these posts. It's exactly the kind of commentary and analysis that I've been looking for for a long time. Really good work and I'm looking forward to reading further.
CitizenKane
Dublin, Ireland

Post Apr 22nd '14, 16:58

Wow, thanks. Glad to hear it's proving useful to you. In my opinion, M2 was the shining moment of the series (ironic, given that M2 is probably my least favorite game of the series) - in M1, we were still just kind of getting to know the ropes, even up to the very end. By M2, we had it down, and the later entries really turned out quite good. The Infinity posts are just as good. As a companion to the Tour of Duty, I'd recommend the Co-op Let's Play done by Narcogen and Blackstar, which can be found on rampancy.net - it's quite good, and it too follows the pattern of Tour of Duty, in that M2 is really where they started to shine.
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PerseusSpartacus
Somewhere in the 19th Century...


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