On puzzles and story

On puzzles: I agree that nobody should expect in others the ability to come up with the chain of logic that results in smoking to acquire pantyhose, and whether or not that's a weakness in the game, at the very least it's made into a weakness by the fact that the tools at your disposal are not made obvious to you (the interface never made it clear you could interact with the ash tray at all, which is B.S. that gets in the way of trying to solve the adventure game style puzzle). However, I don't think Grim Fandango's puzzles were more aggravating than others you guys have encountered before, and actually I think in many ways they're a step above. I think your coworker was spot on in his or her analysis: King's Quest 6 was pretty shitty in a lot of ways, and Grim Fandango was amazing (for me, AMAZING) in many ways, it's all in the contrast. Remember how excited Sean P got every time something happened in King's Quest 6, ANYTHING happened? Because there were these long tortorous segments of nothing interesting happening whatsoever, so solving any puzzle felt that much better. Like gambling: long droughts of failure with the occasional success.

Also, lol at Bill and poems.

On story: Hou guys pointed out some of the game's many influences, its art deco style, El Dia de Los Muertos, its hero's journey... and mentioned in passing its noir influence. I'll always be fond of detective novels and film noir, and the noir influence explains parts of why the story was the way it was. The intrigue of the number nine tickets, the fat cat boss pulling the strings behind the more personal villain Dom, the femme fatale (for a while you think it might be Meche for kicking you off the boat and later pulling a gun on you, but she doesn't have the heart for it, so of course the femme fatale turns out to be the other woman with a sultry voice), the details that make sense only in retrospect, and an everyman protagonist who's down on his luck but always trying to do the right thing, even if it's sometimes with questionable means. And the fact that Grim Fandango could merge all these influences so seamslessly (okay, Sean P might argue otherwise haha) is what makes it an enduring classic :)

Sorry it was aggravating though. If you guys ever choose to do Monkey Island, those games will be just as aggravating, but so hilariously written to be worth it :D