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Space Quest 1 (VGA) - Part 3: The Bar at the End of the Universe

Written by Andy Panthro


The bar, like the town, looks like it's seen better days

Civilization at last! Or at least a fair approximation of it. To my left, some sort of second-hand spaceship salesman. To my right, a rather dismal looking bar. Straight ahead, a shop selling droids of various uses. Behind me, nothing but sand and rocks for miles (and nasty creatures that would eat me whole). While the relative safety of this quaint little desert outpost is nice, I still have a mission to accomplish. Millions of Xenonians are depending on me!


 These guys are a lot better than ZZ Top
(and I only saw them because I had to go back and take this screenshot)

But first I think a drink is in order, so down the stairs to the "Rocket Bar" it is. To call this place a dive bar is to give dive bars a bad name, but the beer is only 2 buckazoids so I sit and get a drink and have a look around. At the stage, a couple of bearded fellows and a drummer do their best to give the place some atmosphere. Towards the back there's a strange blue fellow playing a slot machine, and at the bar there's a collection of some of the strangest aliens you're likely to see outside of a sci-fi convention.


Behind the bar, Roger hangs out with the former gamblers

Turns out the blue guy was all out of luck, and it seems that gambling can lead to an early death. The cleaning robot helpfully dumped his ashes outside, and since I didn't have enough money for beer (or anything else for that matter), I went outside too. Outside the bar, I noticed the keys were still in my skimmer! I quickly made sure to take them, otherwise surely it would have been stolen and I would certainly have been stuck. I took a wander around the bar, and noticed a pile of debris. My keen adventurers senses tingled, and I rifled through the dirt and ashes, finding myself 11 buckazoids richer! Of course there was only one thing for it, more beer!


This droid has a little bit of an attitude

Back at the bar, and a couple of beers later, I overheard one of my fellow patrons talking about his last journey. He'd managed to stumble across the Sarien ship, and saw them incinerate a small moon before he managed to get away. Obviously they had figured out how to use the Star Generator, so my time was really limited! No more time for boozing, I'd better figure out a way to get off this planet and save the day.

Droids-B-Us, your marvelous malfunctioning or malcontent machine mart!

Knowing that gambling is a fool's game, I stepped up to the slot machine and took a look. It seems you could win big by betting up to 3 buckazoids at a time, with a maximum return of 60 bucks! Of course failure would only lead to a short and no doubt painful death. Time to tip the odds into my favour, with the sly use of this magnetic gizmo. After attaching it to the right place on the machine, all I got was payouts! Although after gaining a little over 300 bucks the machine started to overheat and nearly exploded in my face. I sheepishly took my magnet back and left before anyone could notice.


Unfortunately he couldn't sell me this droid

With my wallet stuffed with somewhat fraudulently obtained buckazoids, I needed something to spend them on. As I was pondering whether to head to the droid shop or the spaceship salesman, the dude who tried to buy my skimmer turned up again. This time he had an improved offer, 30 buckazoids and a nifty jetpack. That sounded like it would come in handy, and 30 bucks for a skimmer I couldn't take with me wasn't too shabby either. I took the deal and he even threw in a couple of vouchers for local businesses (although the bar tab one was of little use to me now!).


 Ditching the skimmer for 30 bucks and a sweet jetpack!

I decided to find myself a spaceship first, and wandered through to speak to Tiny. His ships were really a collection of mostly useless crap, but one did catch my eye. A bit pricy at over 200 buckazoids, but it looked like it would actually get me off this planet. Turns out I needed a droid to pilot it, which was probably for the best since I had yet to apply for a space-pilots license. Onwards to Droids-b-us!


My nearly-new space ship and droid, ready for take-off

I guess a lot of people in this sector buy droids, because this place seemed well stocked. Sure, some of the robots were a little out of sorts (and some a little homicidal), but with my voucher I could afford a decent navigation robot all of my own. All that was left was to load him onto the ship, and make my way out of here.


It seems I've stolen this guys spaceship

I got the robot to travel on to the coordinates that the guy at the bar had seen the Sariens, and sure enough they were still there. I could feel my heart beating fast now, but I knew Xenon's hope lay in my hands. I slipped the jetpack on and headed out to the Sarien ship. Gliding over the hull, I found an airlock and got myself inside, just as my jetpack was overheating. I guess you can never trust random jetpacks from total strangers.


Entering the second set of copy protection to travel to the right sector

Inside the airlock was a scanner, which looked rather like a big bug zapper. I couldn't open the door so I decided to hide in the corner and sure enough a droid came through to deal with my combusting jetpack. Using this distraction, I quickly got myself through the door and into the ship proper. Now all I need to do is find the Star Generator, and save the day!


The Sarien ship!

Interesting Death of the Day (TM)

Not so many great deaths here at Ulence Flats, but there's still plenty of ways for Roger to lose his life. Choosing the wrong droid at Droids-B-Us is a quick way to end your game, as is picking a worse-for-wear flying saucer from Tiny's spaceship sales. However, the best death has to be from the gambling machine with the worst odds in the galaxy. This murderous slot machine managed to kill me on my very first attempt to play it without using the cheating magnetic widget.


Please gamble responsibly!

Note Regarding Spoilers and Companion Assist Points: There’s a set of rules regarding spoilers and companion assist points. Please read it here before making any comments that could be considered a spoiler in any way. The short of it is that no points will be given for hints or spoilers given in advance of me requiring one. Please...try not to spoil any part of the game for me...unless I really obviously need the help...or I specifically request assistance. In this instance, I've not made any requests for assistance. Thanks!

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