“I’m forcing a squirrel into a pipe using a statue of Ron Jeremy as Pan”
Selling soap and stuffing ostrich asses in the Advent ures of Bertram Fidle Episode 2
When I played the first Bertram Fiddle episode for this column, I got horribly drunk on sherry and port, chosen tipples of the elderly, festive or desperate. Now that the sequel is here, things are going to be different. The fact you can play adventure games while tipsy doesn’t mean you should. It’s a pleasantly dull, adventure-free start. Bertram is working in a factory making ‘adequate soap’. Before I can do anything else, I need to finish his work for the day by selling three shipments of soap. It’s going to take at least five minutes, but I can last that without a drink.
By the time I’ve sold my third order, I’ve made a big dent in the accidentally-huge whisky I poured. The bleak, cobwebbed Victoriana is too much fun to play without a drink, and it’s certain to improve my puzzlesolving skills—not because alcohol sharpens the mind, but because the puzzles in Bertram Fiddle are so odd that anything which encourages me to think laterally is a bonus. I make a few prank calls before leaving and the adventure truly begins.
Playing Bertram Fiddle is like a watching a sinister animation, but in a good way. I enjoy soaking up the absurdities. One moment I’m forcing a squirrel into a pipe using a statue of Ron Jeremy as Pan—there’s a lot to unpack there—the next I’m mixing paint made out of sink slime and crushed beetles. I often don’t know why I’m doing the things I’m doing, but the weirdness encourages me to experiment. It forces me to think differently. I just try everything and hope nobody is watching.
Bertram is framed for murder, and it’s left to his cyclopean manservant Gavin to rescue him. This is where I get slightly stuck. At one point I’m trying to use an ice cream cone to drill Bertam out of prison, which strikes me as a perfectly reasonable and not illogical at all. The strange thing is I’m closer than I realize.
Get St uffed
The solution is wonderfully convoluted. First, I steal a ladder from a man cleaning graffiti from a statue of Queen Victoria—one of the game’s many pop culture references, actually based on the work of artist Vaj Graff. I retire to an adventure club, and notice a unicorn horn which would work well as a drill. To get it, I have to knock a guard into the gaping ass of a stuffed ostrich by forcing a man to fly off his steampunk treadmill. Then, using the ladder, I climb onto a bar to steal the horn, which I replace with the ice cream cone. My tool is complete, Bertram is liberated, my whisky is finished. We escape into the sewers, and that seems like the perfect place to stop. There’s loads of adventure to come— hopefully with more alcohol and rectum-based conundrums—but I need to go to bed and I’m expecting a hangover. Thanks, Bertram.
Playing BertramFiddle is like a watching a sinister animation
Tried to drill through a wall using an ice cream cone. THIS MONTH ALSO PLAYED TheDarksideDetective, Baldur’sGate M AT T H E W E L L I O T T
“I still remember my first Werther’s Origina-” *gunshot*
It’s like Oliver Twist, but soapier.