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Putt-Putt Travels Through Time

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Title Screen

Putt-Putt Travels Through Time

Developer: Humongous Entertainment
Publisher: Humongous Entertainment
Platforms: Windows, Mac OS Classic
Released in US: 1997


AreasIcon.png This game has unused areas.
GraphicsIcon.png This game has unused graphics.
MusicIcon.png This game has unused music.
SoundIcon.png This game has unused sounds.
TextIcon.png This game has unused text.
DebugIcon.png This game has debugging material.
LevelSelectIcon.png This game has a hidden level select.


Once your series has a standard sequel and a game in space, the only sensible choice for the next entry is "game through time" … and so Putt-Putt Travels Through Time, learning all about cowboys, dinosaurs, and wizards of highly questionable historicity. He also discovers that, in a truly prescient vision of the modern gaming industry, the only videogame in the era of flying cars and conveyor belt sidewalks is a crappy pseudo-3D Breakout clone. (It's not actually on a cell phone, though.)

Note: This game's subtitles are riddled with typos and inconsistencies with the spoken dialogue. Anything on this page labelled "Subtitles" is copied directly from the game, even if it appears to be in error.

Debug Mode

Hmmm...
To do:
Of the two codes on the ScummVM wiki, only SputmDebug seems to work, and it only activates the debug keys. "Someone" should figure out what's up

This game has a set of standard debugging features shared with many other Humongous games.

Debug Rooms

Path Select

Putt Putt Travels Through Time Path Select.png

Accessible by warping to room 55, which is most easily accomplished by running the game in ScummVM and using the room command in the debugger. Clicking on the buttons alters the current game path (plot item locations and objects that are needed for puzzles).

Room Select

Putt Putt Travels Through Time Room Select.png

Accessible by warping to room 53. Clicking on a room warps Putt-Putt to it.

Item Select

Putt Putt Travels Through Time Item Select.png

Accessible by warping to room 54. Clicking on an item puts it in the inventory. Having some items precludes having others (e.g. picking up Pep disables the balloon maker, rope, and firewood).

Debug Options

Adding SputmDebug=1 to the hegames.ini configuration file enables a few keyboard shortcuts allowing control over various aspects of the game.

  • Ctrl + E: Brings up a series of dialog boxes that prompt for a variable number, give its current value, and allow it to be changed.
  • Ctrl + F: Enables "fast mode", causing everything except sound playback to run as fast as the hardware will allow.
  • Ctrl + G: Prompts for a room number to warp to.
  • Ctrl + O: Prompts for the number of an object to place in the inventory.

Graphics

This game doesn't have quite as many unused graphics as Putt-Putt Saves the Zoo, but there are still some interesting bits and pieces lying around.

Artist Easter Egg

PuttTime artists.gif

This uncolored lineart is stored with the animations for the various creatures at the end of the desert. Its internal name is "Artists Hanging Out", so presumably these are self-caricatures by some of the animators.

PuttTime artists-bg.gif

Here's what it looks like on the intended background.

Storyboards

A few storyboards for various events snuck into the game.

Mr. Firebird's Lab

Graphic Internal Name Notes
Due to technical limitations on large GIFs, see the full-size animation here. opening a The first part of the intro, with Mr. Firebird explaining the Time Portal to Putt-Putt. Note how some frames were "axed" out of the final sequence.
Due to technical limitations on large GIFs, see the full-size animation here. openingb The Time Portal malfunction.
PuttTime room-16-intro-4.gif putt launch Putt-Putt entering the Time Portal.
PuttTime room-16-intro-3.gif vortex Glowing animation for the Time Portal in the storyboards.

Pep and the Pterodactyls

Graphic Internal Name Notes
PuttTime room-35-pepgrubs-1.gif 10-1 Pep being force-fed grubs …
PuttTime room-35-pepgrubs-2.gif 10-2 … and again.
PuttTime room-35-pepgrubs-3.gif 10-2a The same, minus Pep.

Prehistoric Bridge

Graphic Internal Name Notes
PuttTime room-41-bridge.gif 7-3 Help Wheel mutated Putt-Putt helping Wheel push down the bridge.
PuttTime bridge-sketch-1.pngPuttTime bridge-sketch-2.png

PuttTime bridge-sketch-3.pngPuttTime bridge-sketch-4.png

none Some full-size test images of the fallen bridge and the various possible missing pieces.

Train Station

Graphic Internal Name Notes
PuttTime sketch-toby.png Enter 1 old A lone storyboard sketch of Toby arriving at the station.

Miscellaneous

Graphic Notes
PuttTime save-unknown.png Placeholder save/load image for unknown rooms. Similar images exist in most Humongous games.
PuttTime museum-background.pngPuttTime museum-text.png The background for the future's museum has some text from the artifact displays hidden behind the dashboard.
PuttTime stories-placeholder.png A placeholder graphic for story names in the Silly Story Maker. A duplicate version also exists, perhaps corresponding to the two partially completed stories.
PuttTime squoosh-placeholder.png This Squoosh background (the first in the data) isn't actually unused, but for some reason it's duplicated 25 times after the last unique background. Maybe more pictures were planned than the artists got around to drawing?

Time Continuum Notes

PuttTime continuum-mouth.gif PuttTime continuum-toasterthing.gif PuttTime continuum-yellow.gif

The animation data for the Time Continuum Song sequence contains quite a few duplicate frames that have labels in the margins indicating either their function or their order in the animation sequence. All of these have cleaned-up counterparts that are used in-game. The game's animation data does some less-than-straightforward things in order to place all the graphics correctly throughout the song, so the animations shown here are just mockups of how these would look if they were placed in sequence as intended.

It's worth nothing that frames with unnecessarily large margins are fairly common in Humongous games. The leftover labels in this game indicate that these may have originally been used for animation notes, which were later erased without resizing the images to compensate.

Music

A few variations on used tracks are hidden in the music data. Note that these technically can be heard in the game, because the credits are programmed to play anything stored in the HE4 file at random once the "Time Continuum" instrumental ends, but that is just a happy coincidence; these pieces listed are otherwise heard nowhere else in the game, and it's extremely unlikely the player will hear any of these anyway due to the vast array of music that is stored in the HE4 file to begin with.

File Comments
The introduction music, but with a fade-out partway in.
An instrumental version of the introduction music, played in a lower key. Used in place of the regular intro music in some non-English releases.
Two songs from the Happy Bard Max Wellington that never play.

Additionally, several of the music files are present in duplicate: two from the medieval era, one from the Old West, and one from the future. There are also copies of the Time Portal music (though one of them actually is used) and one of Max Wellington's songs ("The elves got into trouble...").

Dialogue

Putt-Putt has a few lines of unused dialogue.

File Subtitles Comments
Wake up Pep! Placed with the intro dialogue right after "Pep... Pep....", but never plays.
It's muddy around here! Would have been used after arriving in the medieval era.
Here the punchcard for the book I want. When Putt-Putt checks out a book from the library, he either asks for it by name (if it's one of the stories King Chariot can request) or just refers to it as "this one".
It says 'Shhh! Quiet!' Apparently meant to appear on a sign in the library.
I need to find a story about a magician so King Chariot will give me back my history report. General reminder about the unused magician story.
The story about a magician. Asking Darien for the magician story.
It's story about a magician. Inventory description of the magician story.
... a story about a magician. In-library reminder that King Chariot asked for the magician story.
... a story about some animals. In-library reminders about two vague King Chariot requests that don't correspond directly to a particular story, as the used requests do. These lines seem to be all that remain.
... a story that will make him laugh.
None Putt-Putt exclaiming "One of the biggest dinosaurs that ever lived!", referring to the tyrannosaurus in the stone age. The lines that would have preceded this are subtitled "Oh my goodness, it's a Tyrannosaurus rex, " – the trailing comma is exactly as written. Apparently this line was hastily excised, probably because it's not exactly true. No subtitles exist, and the line isn't even referenced by the game. It was removed in the 1999 re-release.
None Putt-Putt saying "I need to find something I can use to unlock it", referring to the trunk the calculator gets stuck in in the Old West. Like the above line, this is unreferenced and was removed in subsequent versions.

The Silly Story Maker

Somehow, the Silly Story Maker ended up being quite the hive of unused content.

King Chariot Narration

Hmmm...
To do:
Voice clips for King Chariot for the stories "The Hero", "The Scale", and "Pajama Sam"

Every line of every story was recorded in the voices of both the female narrator and King Chariot, but King Chariot will never ask for the stories "The Hero", "The Scale", or "Pajama Sam". As a result, his voice clips for those stories can never be heard.

In fact, because those lines aren't used, no one ever noticed that this clip from "The Hero" was mistakenly sampled at 44100 Hz instead of 11025 Hz like the rest of the game's dialogue. If it ever played in-game, it would be four times too slow!

Here's what it sounds like at the correct sample rate.

Unused Stories

Several unused stories are in the game data, in various stages of completion.

The Magician

Distracted by the [X], Merlin turned the King's [Y] into a [Z].

X: jester, fly, mouse, elephant

Y: crown, staff, throne, wife

Z: frog, martian or gorilla, ice cream cone, accordian

Narration

Recordings exist for both the female narrator and King Chariot, though only the former are presented here.

File Subtitles
Distracted by the jester,
Distracted by the fly,
Distracted by the mouse,
Distracted by the elephant,
Merlin turned the King's crown into a frog.
Merlin turned the King's crown into a martian.
Merlin turned the King's crown into a icecream cone.
Merlin turned the King's crown into a accordian.
Merlin turned the King's staff into a frog.
Merlin turned the King's staff into a martian.
Merlin turned the King's staff into a icecream cone.
Merlin turned the King's staff into a accordian.
Merlin turned the King's throne into a frog.
Merlin turned the King's throne into a martian.
Merlin turned the King's throne into a icecream cone.
Merlin turned the King's throne into a accordian.
Merlin turned the King's wife into a frog.
Merlin turned the King's wife into a martian.
Merlin turned the King's wife into a icecream cone.
Merlin turned the King's wife into a accordian.

This one seems to have been mostly completed. It has voice recordings from both narrators and even some of the necessary lines for being requested by King Chariot, but there are no corresponding graphics. Note that for the third selectable word, the second choice is "martian" in the text but "gorilla" in the voice files.

Too High

The [X] is trying to get the [Y] up on the [Z], But it's too high

X: bear, troll, wolf, spider

Y: billy goat, three pigs, porridge, curds and whey

Z: picket fence, pile of straw, stone bridge, briar patch

Narration

As above, only the female narrator's lines are presented, though the king's are there as well.

File Subtitles
The bear is trying...
The troll is trying...
The wolf is trying...
The spider is trying...
to get the billy goat up on the picket fence, But it's too high.
to get the billy goat up on the pile of straw, But it's too high.
to get the billy goat up on the stone bridge, But it's too high.
to get the billy goat up on the briar patch, But it's too high.
to get the three pigs up on the picket fence, But it's too high.
to get the three pigs up on the pile of straw, But it's too high.
to get the three pigs up on the stone bridge, But it's too high.
to get the three pigs up on the briar patch, But it's too high.
to get the porridge up on the picket fence, But it's too high.
to get the porridge up on the pile of straw, But it's too high.
to get the porridge up on the stone bridge, But it's too high.
to get the porridge up on the briar patch, But it's too high.
to get the curds and whey up on the picket fence, But it's too high.
to get the curds and whey up on the pile of straw, But it's too high.
to get the curds and whey up on the stone bridge, But it's too high.
to get the curds and whey up on the briar patch, But it's too high.

Almost as complete as the Merlin story, although the story text seems rather rough and none of the King Chariot request dialogue exists. May have been scrapped because making "bear" one of the choosable words would have made King Chariot's request for "a story about a bear" ambiguous.

The Kids

The [X] kids are going shopping. They all want the [Y] that features [Z].

X: smart, tall, weird, hyperactive

Y: game, novel, magazine, movie

Z: Pajama Sam, Freddi Fish, Luther, Putt-Putt

This one exists only in text form. Apparently, someone decided one blatant plug for another game was enough.

Freddi Fish/Spy Fox

File Subtitles
Freddi fish
Spy Fox

More canned Humongous ads! These are listed along with the used story titles, right after "Pajama Sam". No other resources exist for either.

Removed Arcade Game?

Putt Putt Travels Through Time Arcade.png

One of the locations on the Room Select map is labelled "arcade game". Clicking on it does nothing, though. Instead, the button marked "arcade game 2" starts the Squoosh minigame. This suggests that at some point there were supposed to be two arcade games, or that the minigame was significantly reworked at some point and moved to another room.

Unused Subtitles

Most Humongous games have inaccessible subtitles, and this one is no exception. To activate them, add TextOn=1 to hegames.ini.

Revisional Differences

Hmmm...
To do:
2002 and 2007 version differences.

1999 Version

Hmmm...
To do:
Look at this more thoroughly.

The 1999 rerelease made a few changes:

  • Title logo updated to include a link to humongous.com
  • Title screen copyright date updated
  • Unreferenced audio files removed

Additionally, the 2002 re-release from Infogrames made several more changes:

  • The opening logos are replaced with the flashy Infogrames logo followed by the paper-flip Humongous logo
  • The copyright date was removed altogether on the title screen
  • There is a fade-in before the intro. According to a former developer, this actually was planned for the original release, but was scrapped when some computers did not support the palette animation.
  • During the Time Continuum Song, the portal the history report originally flew into is now missing due to a bug
  • The books in the background on the line "When you've returned, you'll know what you learned" from said song were originally a monochromatic blue; they were colorized for this release

The demo for this version added a few more changes on top of this:

  • The line "I'm back in a brand new adventure!" was cut due to the game being five years old at this point
  • Pep is no longer present, which removes the strange conflict with the line "These must be the places where Pep and all my things landed."
  • When clicking on an inaccessible area, the cursor now disappears as Putt-Putt informs the player
  • Originally when the demo finished, the game would just quit after the last spoken line. Here, the game cuts back to the title screen for a bit before exiting.

Miscellaneous

Many games produced after Humongous stopped allowing easy access to the subtitles have very sloppily done transcription. The text is often typo-riddled and sometimes diverges wildly from what's actually being spoken, apparently reflecting an earlier draft of the script. A few particularly noteworthy cases:

Hmmm...
To do:
Probably lots more of these
Audio Subtitles
Once you find all your things, we can close this time portal for good! That means anything or anybody can get lost in time!
Wheel's primordial soup voted "most tasty" at annual Dino Day's fun festival held last week on Big Rock! Wheel's pimoridal soup was voted 'Most Tasty!'
Another Putt-Putt time portal update. Hi, this is Okra with CarChat.
Hall Hardy here. We have Mr. Firebird on the line. He's going to tell us about his new Time Portal. Hi, this is Okra and I have Mr. Firebird on the line to tell us about his new time portal.
Well, that is a surprising turn of events. Oh my!

Note that "CarChat" was a radio program in Putt-Putt Saves the Zoo, where it was itself a replacement for what the subtitles identified as "CarTalk".