If you are someone who enjoys games, music, and literature, the Bell Brothers’ Record Tripping is perfect for you. Learn to scratch records in order to navigate your way through puzzles while Alice in Wonderland excerpts are read to you. It might sound overwhelming, but the overall effect is quite pleasing. The animation, set off by the website’s simplistic design, is beautifully done and with a dream-like quality that gives the impression that you’re really inside of a storybook. The game, created using Adobe Flash, is nominated for a South by Southwest Interactive Award in the Motion Graphics category.

Mouse-Based Turntable Skills: Scratch and Win
To play this game, you need a mouse with a scroll wheel on it. In fact, the mouse is the only part of your computer that you’re using to play this game. If you, like many, are lacking that particular peripheral and your laptop track pad has a scroll feature, that will work as well. If you’re using a Mac, keep one finger on the track pad and use the second one to scroll — just the way you would on a website. For the game’s purposes, it’s not the easiest thing to do (since you often need to “scratch” quickly), but it will work.

When you click on a new game, you’ll first get the opportunity to practice your turntable skills by scratching records. When you complete that, you move on to the story.

Navigating the Five Chapters
The game is separated into five levels. The levels are different chapters from Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, and each has 3 sub-levels (easy, medium, and hard). Here’s what you can expect:

  • Chapter 1: Barrel on a Hill: The barrel has a maze in it with a little silver ball. Using your record-scratching ability, you navigate the ball out of the maze to win.
  • Chapter 2: The Wall Safe: To the side of the screen, you will see playing cards or jars of fireflies — something that will give you a number to put into the wall safe. You scratch the pad to get to each number, but remember: locks need to be turned right-left-right. In the easier levels, the numbers are given to you. In the hardest level, you need to count the fireflies in each jar to know which number to use. Tip: look quickly. The number in the top left of the screen isn’t always the first one you use.
  • Chapter 3: Wind & The Wind Mill: Scratching at a wind mill this time, you need to control the wind in order to guide the seeds into the pots by the window.
  • Chapter 4: The Train Station: An arrival/departure board will tell you when the trains are expected and, where applicable, which rabbit is to board each train. You scratch at the clock in order to speed up time, then slow it down to give the rabbits time to hop on the train. Tip: if the rabbits are sitting at the open door but not jumping on, they’re probably out of order. Let go of the mouse and allow time to continue. They’ll rearrange themselves and hop on.
  • Chapter 5: Down the Factory Line: In the final level, you’re scratching a conveyor belt in order to fill the empty boxes with the correct objects (mice and rabbits). A board on the wall behind the conveyor belt will tell you what needs to go in each box.

Finally, there is the music aspect of the game. In each level, under the reading of the story, you’ll hear instrumental music that includes tracks from The Gorillaz, Beck, Death Cab for Cutie, and Spoon. The music is fine, but initially kind of confusing. When I started playing the game for the first time, I thought that I needed to scratch in beat with the music. Not so. This gives the effect of sounding really garbled at times, but if the fact that it’s off-beat doesn’t bother you, then it’s really not a big deal.

The game takes somewhere in the ballpark of 5+ minutes to play, depending on how quickly you complete each level. It’s fun and well-animated, and you’ll want to challenge yourself to beat your own previous scores. It’s a clever game, which was my favorite part, and the dreamlike animation, for which it earned its nomination, is certainly impressive. Give it a try.

Image Source: Wikipedia