So, I finally finished playing through Psychonauts yesterday afternoon. If it sounds like a chore, it’s because it was a freaking chore. I picked up where I’d previous left off — in the midst of the level “Waterloo World,” and needed a walk-through to finish the level because one item that should have responded to telekinesis didn’t the first three times I tried it, so I gave up and checked GameFAQs.

Armed with newfound knowledge, I used telekinesis on the object again and for whatever reason, unlike the previous attempts, it worked. Another frustrating example of Guide Dang It. That was the last world I had to visit before the long climb up the asylum tower (which I found to be fun and atmospheric), an anti-climactic boss fight, and the final world “Meat Circus.”

I’ve been to TVtropes, and I’ve read about the Meat Circus level. When I started playing through it, I could see how someone might be annoyed: it begins with the game’s first and only escort mission. I actually got through that section on the first try, but I thought I was just skilled and/or lucky. One more anti-climactic boss fight later, I was in the scrappiest part of the scrappiest level in the entire game.

I remember saying at one point “I’m glad I only paid ten dollars for this, because for this crap, if I’d paid fifty dollars for this, I’d demand my money back.” However, despite the many, many problems with the game, I was satisfied by the ending — maybe a sequel hook, or maybe “and the adventure continues.”