The Legend-News

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Monday, 2001 March 12 : Volume 4, Number 6

What We Got Here

The games people play in Downhill Trucker; exploring the night life in "Lewis & Clark", the Song A’ Th’ Week.


Downhill Trucker

While once again sifting through the boxes down in the storage room, looking for stuff that I should have thrown out years ago, I found a transcript from an old text adventure. The ink on the dot-matrix printer output was fading, but it was still readable. So I hooked up my flatbed scanner and ran the pages through my optical character recognition software, which produced the words which you see below.

This transcript is incomplete, so it probably isn't a log of the entire game. And I'm not sure what was the name of this game, but somehow it seems very familiar. Very, very familiar.

You are sitting in the passenger seat of a 1948 Peterbilt flatbed truck.

> LOOK AROUND

To your left, in the driver's seat, is your partner Earl. He is sleeping.
Behind you, on the bed of the truck, are eight-five crates of chickens,
stacked to a height of 13 feet 9 inches. To your right is a sheer wall
of rock which rises hundreds of feet above your head. Ahead of you is the 
summit of a mountain pass. Your truck is facing southwest, more or less.

> SOUTHWEST

You're not driving the truck.

> TELL EARL TO GO SOUTHWEST

Earl can't hear you; he's sleeping.

> WAKE EARL

Earl snorts and wakes up. He yawns, and stretches his arms and legs.
Earl asks "Do we have any more grape Nehi?"

> GET NEHI

You can't see any Nehi here.

> LOOK CLOSELY

On the dashboard of the truck is a package of toothpicks. Between the
seats is an aluminum cooler which says "Coleman" on the front. An empty
envelope of onion soup mix lies on the floor of the passenger side of
the truck.

> OPEN COOLER

The cooler is open.

> LOOK INSIDE COOLER

You see a couple inches of water in the cooler. Floating in the water
are two bottles of grape Nehi.

> TAKE NEHI. GIVE NEHI TO EARL.

Earl says "Thanks!" and chugs the Nehi.

> SOUTHWEST

You're not driving the truck.

> EARL, DRIVE THE TRUCK

Earl puts down his bottle of Nehi and steps on the accelerator. The
engine booms loudly. The chickens awaken and begin to cluck. You are 
moving southwest towards the summit of the mountain pass.

> SOUTHWEST

Earl continues to drive towards the summit.

> SOUTHWEST

Earl continues to drive towards the summit.

HINT: Type A and then press return to repeat the previous action.

> A

Earl reaches the summit of the pass. He lights up the remaining half of 
a cigar and takes a puff. Looking out at the scenery, he says "My, ain't 
this purdy up here." You notice a warning sign that says "7%".

> A

Earl crests the summit and begins driving downhill. The truck begins to
pick up speed. You are zooming past a line of telephone poles.

> EARL, SLOW DOWN

Earl downshifts into sixth gear. The truck continues to accelerate. The
telephone poles zoom past you at a faster rate.

> A

Earl shifts into fifth gear, but the shift knob detaches from the shift 
lever. The truck continues to accelerate. The telephone poles are just a 
blur.

> EARL, SCREW ON THE KNOB

Earl attempts to thread the knob back onto the lever. The ash of his
cigar falls off into the cuff of his pants. A small fire starts, but
Earl slaps his pants and extinguishes it.

> EARL, SLOW DOWN

Earl doesn't hear you. He is staring fearfully at the road ahead, his
hands frozen to the steering wheel.

> PRESS THE BRAKE

You're not driving the truck!

> EARL, PRESS THE BRAKE

Earl stomps on the brake pedal as hard as he can, but the pedal goes
all the way to the floor and stays there. Earl says, "It's sorta like
steppin' on a plum."

You see a hairpin turn ahead. The road turns to the left.

> EARL, TURN LEFT.

You see a another hairpin turn ahead. The road turns to the right.

> EARL, TURN RIGHT

You see a tunnel ahead. A sign warns you "Clearance 12 feet 0 inches".

> EARL, SLOW DOWN

Aren't you forgetting something?

> AM I?

Yes.

> WHAT?

The chickens are stacked too high for you to travel through the tunnel.

> EARL, STOP

You don't have any brakes, remember? The truck enters the tunnel. The top
row of chickens is knocked off.

> EARL, SLOW DOWN

Earl tries, but he can't. The truck continues down the mountain and
around the switchbacks and hairpin turns.

> PRAY

Good idea. You need all the help that you can get. You are entering a town.

> EARL, SLOW DOWN

Earl can't slow down. The truck enters the town, and smashes into the 
side of the feed store.

*** YOU HAVE DIED ***

Do you want to play again (Y/N)?

Followup
Just as I was about to send off this newsletter, I found a torn scrap of paper that seems to be from another game transcript. I think that it might be the game above, but I'm not sure.

You are in a maze of twisty little roads; one of them looks like a
can full of worms, another one looks like malaria germs.

Song A’ Th’ Week

Where Are They Now?
Fairweather Lewis has retired from the force, and he's running his own private security firm; Willard Clark runs the only bar in Beebeetown; Arnold Jones and MaryBeth Jensen got married and have two kids; Marvin Kline manages the Omaha region's Trak Auto stores; Orval Hinkel, sadly, is spending the next 30 years in jail on a DUI-related manslaughter charge; the orgy at the Dew Drop Inn continues bi-weekly (come as you are!); and the whereabouts of the hippies is unknown.

Lewis and Clark
(C.W. McCall, Bill Fries, Chip Davis)
From the album Black Bear Road

Now Arnold Jones an' MaryBeth Jensen's in a 'Vette down by the Deep Rock
Had John Denver on the 8-track, gettin' high
MaryBeth's wig was on the floor
An' Arnold's feet was out the door
When we shined our flashlight in Arnold's startled eyes
I says "What chew doin' boy?
Don't chew know that's against the law?
We just gonna hafta get this situation under control
Now my name is Fairweather Lewis an' this here's Willard Clark
We the Pottawattamie County Love Patrol."

Then two hippies in a Chevy's puffin' grass an' sippin' wine
'Bout fourteen mile south-east a' Council Bluffs
They's passin' 'round the peace-pipe
When we caught 'em with our flashlight
An' Willard's hairy hands applied the cuffs.
I says, "Boys you got some trouble
You committin' herb-i-cide.
We just gonna hafta get this situation under control
'Cause I'm Fairweather Lewis, an' this here's Willard Clark
We the Pottawattamie County Weed Patrol."

Then we spied ol' Marvin Kline a-headin' south on twenty-nine
Like a midnight auto ac-cessory store on wheels
His trunk was full a' hub caps
An' his back seat full a' tires
When we picked him up and made him spread his heels
I says, "Hands up-on the wall, boy
You allowed t' make one call
We just gonna hafta get this situation under control
Cause, see, I'm Fairweather Lewis, an' this here's Willard Clark
We the Pottawattamie County Rip-off Patrol."

Then Orval Hinkle left the Go-Go Club on his brand-new motor-sickle
Runnin' stop-lights, raisin' hell an' causin' accidents
His brain was doin' wheelies
An' his blood was three-two beer
When we nailed him in his driveway at his residence
I says, "Orval, you're in trouble boy
But if you'll blow this here balloon up
We gonna get your situation under control
Now I'm Captain Fairweather Lewis an' this here's Willard Clark
We the Pottawattamie County Juice Patrol."

Then we's passin' by the Dew Drop Inn when he heard this woman scream
So we pulled on in an' parked an' got the guns out
Well we bashed on through the lobby into unit seventeen
There's twenty-eight folks in there without no clothes on.
I says "Everbody up against the wall; show us yer identification.
We just gonna definitely get this situation under control
'Cause my name is Fairweather Lewis, an' this here's Willard Clark
We the Pottawattamie County Sin Patrol."

C'mon, Willard, let's go sneakin' 'round in the dark some more, never know what yer gonna find.


The Legend-News is Copyright 2001 TechRen Enterprises. "What does the midget stand for?" "Just about everything, Lucy." Thanks to Bill Fries and Chip Davis for the words and music.