Quest for the Holy MacGuffin
The Council of Loathing sends you on a mission to recover the Holy MacGuffin.
- Adventure in The Black Forest until you find the black market map.
- If this is your first ascension, or if you are in a path that does not allow access to your familiars, continue adventuring until you find sunken eyes and broken wings.
- Combine the eyes and wings to make a reassembled blackbird. Use it to get the Reassembled Blackbird familiar.
- Set it to your active familiar, then use the map.
- Buy the forged identification documents at The Black Market for 5,000 Meat. You can also buy a can of black paint for 1000 meat, though it is not strictly necessary until later in the quest.
- Vacation at The Shore until you get Covert Operations, which will give you your father's MacGuffin diary.
- Read the entirety of your father's journal to add the four parts of the Holy MacGuffin quest to your Quest Log (and to enable some important quest adventures!) You will need to go to explore the Palindome, Spookyraven Manor, and the Hidden Temple to reassemble the Staff of Ed, and venture into The Arid, Extra-Dry Desert to find The Ancient Buried Pyramid.
Hidden Temple quest (Gotta Worship Them All)
This stage of the quest has 2 parts:
The Hidden Temple
- Open the path to The Hidden Temple.
- When adventuring in The Hidden Temple, using stone wool to obtain the Stone-Faced effect will allow you to receive the non-combat adventure of your choice immediately. This is not required but it will speed things up greatly.
- Before you read the diary, you may want to adventure in the Temple until you receive Such Great Heights. This can be done by choosing to explore the higher levels at Fitting In. At Such Great Heights, choose to climb down some vines to receive the Nostril of the Serpent.
- After reading the diary, continue in the Temple until you receive The Hidden Heart of the Hidden Temple (any of them). Choose to go down the stairs, then choose the one with the cute little lightning-tailed guy on it, then choose to go through the door. (The Pikachutlotal button will only be noticed after reading your father's journal).
- In At Least It's Not Full Of Trash, pick the middle choice (Raise your hands up towards the heavens), hinted at in your father's journal.
- Next is a 9x7 spelling puzzle Beginning at the Beginning of Beginning. The word to spell out is "bananas".
- Finally, in No Visible Means of Support, pick the last choice (Do nothing).
- This unlocks The Hidden City location in the Distant Woods.
The Hidden City
- Your first goal is to clear your way through each of the four overgrown shrines. Each consists of three fights against dense liana and a final non-combat that unlocks a nearby building.
- You can optionally speed this stage up by adventuring in The Hidden Park you can receive a non-combat that gives an Antique machete, fighting dense liana with this equipped instantly wins the fight at no adventure cost. You may also wish to clear the liana from A Massive Ziggurat at this stage.
- Once all four shrines have been cleared, you will unlock four new locations, The Hidden Apartment Building, The Hidden Hospital, The Hidden Bowling Alley and The Hidden Office Building.
- You can optionally speed up completion of all of these zones by adventuring in the park and choosing to knock over the dumpster. This removes the pygmy janitor monster from all of these buildings and moves them into the park instead.
- Note that the janitors can drop a book of matches which unlocks The Hidden Tavern. This can help speed up other parts of the quest, but is also entirely optional.
- On completion of each of these zones you will fight an Ancient protector spirit boss monster that is immune to all physical damage. Use elemental damage to defeat them.
- The Hidden Apartment Building is completed by obtaining the effect Thrice-Cursed and then receiving the Action Elevator non-combat and selecting Go to the Thrice-Cursed Penthouse. There are three ways to get cursed, one is by starting a fight against a pygmy shaman, one is to choose to Go to the mezzanine in the non-combat, the other is by drinking a Cursed Punch in The Hidden Tavern. You need to be cursed three times, if you are cursed again while already cursed the effect is replaced with a more powerful version, maxing out with Thrice-Cursed after being cursed the third time.
- Note that if your curse effect runs out at any time, you need start the whole cursing process over again from the start.
- You can optionally speed up some sections of this quest by removing pygmy witch lawyers from this zone and The Hidden Office Building. To do this select Go down to the parking garage in the Action Elevator non-combat, this moves the lawyers into The Hidden Park instead.
- The Hidden Hospital is completed by wearing one of the following items: bloodied surgical dungarees, surgical apron, Half-size scalpel, Head mirror or surgical mask. You can get these items either as a drop form the pygmy witch surgeon or by raiding the dumpster in The Hidden Park. This will unlock the You, M. D. non-combat to fight the Ancient protector spirit.
- The Hidden Office Building is completed by obtaining all 5 McClusky files from pygmy witch accountants that appear in both this zone and The Hidden Apartment Building. You then need to obtain a boring binder clip from the Working Holiday non-combat and use it to get McClusky file (complete). This lets you fight the Ancient protector spirit by choosing Knock on the boss's office door in the Working Holiday non-combat.
- The Hidden Bowling Alley is completed by obtaining 5 bowling balls. Each of these unlocks the Life is Like a Cherry of Bowls non-combat and you will fight the Ancient protector spirit on the fifth attempt. You can obtain bowling balls from pygmy bowlers or by raiding the dumpster in The Hidden Park.
- Note that you can optionally speed up this quest by buying Bowl of Scorpions from The Hidden Tavern. Having this in inventory will cause you to immediately run away from a drunk pygmy at no adventure cost but consumes the item. You will need to buy multiple if you expect to encounter multiple drunks.
- Each protector spirit drops a stone sphere upon defeat, these should be taken back to the respective overgrown shrines to convert them into stone triangles.
- With all 4 stone triangles, adventure in A Massive Ziggurat, again defeating 3 dense liana to encounter the Protector Spectre (another physically immune monster). Defeating him gets you the spectre scepter and the ancient amulet.
Spooky Raven quest (In a Manor of Spooking)
Portions of this will have already been opened if you've completed the Spookyraven Manor Quest.
- If you haven't unlocked Spookyraven Manor yet, adventure in The Haunted Pantry until you receive The Manor in Which You're Accustomed.
- If you have not unlocked the upper floor of Spookyraven Manor, proceed with the following:
- Adventure in The Haunted Bedroom until you obtain the Spookyraven ballroom key and Lord Spookyraven's spectacles. The key is obtained in a special adventure One Nightstand (Wooden). Check the top drawer first, then the bottom drawer. The spectacles are obtained in a special adventure One Nightstand (Ornate). Choose the adventure: Look behind the nightstand.
- After reading your diary, adventure in The Haunted Ballroom until you play We'll All Be Flat.
- Equip Lord Spookyraven's spectacles (only required for first Ascension).
- Go to the first floor, then down to Spookyraven Manor Wine Cellar where you should see Wine Cellar Glyphs on the wall. You will need one dusty bottle of wine corresponding to each glyph. The wines are a dusty bottle of Marsala, a dusty bottle of Merlot, a dusty bottle of Muscat, a dusty bottle of Pinot Noir, a dusty bottle of Port, and a dusty bottle of Zinfandel. You can only see glyphs in the in-game description pop-up while wearing Lord Spookyraven's spectacles (first Ascension only; spectacles in inventory suffice for subsequent runs). The glyphs corresponding to the wines are randomized each ascension.
- Fight among the Wine Racks until you have enough wine. Each corner drops only three distinct types of wine, as described on the location page.
- Pour wine down the hole at the Wine Cellar Glyphs in the order noted by the glyph pattern: the top, left, then right glyph. If you make a mistake, you will be Majorly Poisoned for 10 adventures and need to replace any bottles you spent that are necessary.
- Fight Lord Spookyraven in the Summoning Chamber. His attacks do slightly more or less than your current HP in damage. As all of his attacks are elemental, Elemental Resistance is very helpful. He is a spooky elemental so hot and stench attacks are very effective. Using a bronzed locust from The Arid, Extra-Dry Desert to reduce monster level drastically at the beginning of combat is also very effective. Beating Lord Spookyraven will reward you with the Eye of Ed and Lord Spookyraven's ear trumpet.
The Palindome (Never Odd Or Even)
- Unlock The Poop Deck by completing the Cap'm Caronch Quest.
- Adventure in The Poop Deck in the Obligatory Pirate's Cove until you get It's Always Swordfish, which unlocks Belowdecks.
- Adventure Belowdecks until you get 2 gaudy keys.
- Use the keys (while still wearing the fledges or the Swashbuckling gear) to get two snakehead charrrms and meatpaste them into a Talisman o' Nam.
- Equip the Talisman o' Nam and click on the Plains to open the path to the Palindome. You'll need to keep the Talisman equipped in order to adventure there.
- Adventure in the Palindome until you obtain a ketchup hound and receive these three non-combat adventures:
- You will need stunt nuts later on so you should try to get them from Bob Racecar or Racecar Bob.
- Once you have all four items, adventure until you get the Drawn Onward non-combat adventure, where you put the four items on a shelf in this order:
- After placing the items on the shelves, you will lose all your hit points and receive 4 adventures of Beaten Up. You will also get a diary, "I Love Me, Vol. I".
- Read (use) the I Love Me book, and restore some HP.
- You must cook and deliver a wet stunt nut stew to Mr. Alarm, in the Laboratory in Cobb's Knob. There are a few ways you can do this:
- If you're in a Normal ascension, you can pull a wet stew, and cook that with the stunt nuts. Then boost non-combats and adventure in the Laboratory until you find Mr. Alarm.
- If you're in a Hardcore ascension (or if you cannot pull the stew), then you must adventure in Whitey's Grove until you get a bird rib from a whitesnake and some lion oil from a white lion. Cook them together to get wet stew, and then cook that with stunt nuts from the Palindome to get wet stunt nut stew.
- If Whitey's Grove is not open yet, you can open it by finding Mr. Alarm. Doing this will also raise the drop rates on the lion oil and the bird rib.
- If your class has a Guild, and if you opened it, you can talk to the member at the back to receive the White Citadel Quest, which will open Whitey's Grove. However, this will leave the drop rates on the bird rib and the lion oil at their low values, unless you also talk to Mr. Alarm first.
- When you turn in the wet stunt nut stew, you'll get the Mega Gem.
- Equip the Mega Gem and the Talisman and go back to the Palindome to fight Dr. Awkward (pick any choice from the options to fight him). Defeating him yields the Staff of Fats and the Drowsy Sword.
Pyramid quest (A Pyramid Scheme)
- (Optional.) Go on vacation at The Shore, Inc., get a scrip, and pick up a UV-resistant compass in the gift shop. Equip it. (Not all paths can do this. If you can't, your exploration will be slightly slower.)
- Adventure in The Arid, Extra-Dry Desert to get 10 turns of Ultrahydrated and to unlock An Oasis. You'll get +1% exploration per monster you defeat, or +2% with the compass equipped (this includes wandering monsters). Continue until you find Gnasir (at 10% exploration). Superwater will skip the initial Ultrahydrated boost, but will prevent the Oasis from showing up when you first encounter Gnasir.
- Whenever you run out of Ultrahydrated, go to An Oasis to become Ultrahydrated again. You get 5 turns normally, or 20 with a ten-leaf clover in your inventory. If you fail to do this, you'll pick up negative effects during your exploration.
- (Optional.) Adventure in An Oasis until you obtain the stone rose (superlikely noncombat) and a drum machine (combat drop from a blur).
- (Optional.) If you haven't done so already, buy a can of black paint in The Black Market.
- (Optional.) If you haven't already, adventure in The Haunted Library for a killing jar from the banshee librarian.
- Click on Gnasir's hut to turn in the paint, the rose, and the jar. He will give you one desert sightseeing pamphlet per item. Use the pamphlets for +15% exploration each.
- Continue adventuring in The Arid, Extra-Dry Desert until you reach 100% exploration, or until you have 15 worm-riding manual pages (these sometimes drop after combats, and more than one can drop per combat). If you find all 15 pages, go back to Gnasir's hut to turn them in and get the worm-riding hooks.
- If you have the worm-riding hooks and a drum machine, use the drum machine for +30% exploration.
- If you still haven't reached 100% exploration, continue adventuring in the Desert until you do. This unlocks the pyramid.
The Ancient Buried Pyramid
- Paste the ancient amulet to the Eye of Ed to obtain the headpiece of the Staff of Ed. Then paste the headpiece to the Staff of Fats to get the Staff of Ed. Alternatively, paste the ancient amulet to the Staff of Fats to obtain Staff of Ed, almost. Then paste the Eye of Ed to the Staff of Ed, almost to get the Staff of Ed.
- Unlock A Small Pyramid by having worm-riding hooks in your inventory (you do not need to equip them) and using a drum machine.
- Go to A Small Pyramid in the beach with the Staff of Ed in your inventory. This unlocks the trap door to The Ancient Buried Pyramid.
- Do one of the following:
- For each tomb ratchet you use, or each time you spin the wheel, Lower Chambers change. If you do the first option above, the first ratchet you use will discover the wheel rather than turning it. Adventure in the Lower Chambers when the following rooms are visible (Note: Do not adventure on the lowest floor when either room has holes in the walls (black spots), or you will lose the items you've collected; bombing the rubble without an empty room will also cause a restart):
- Rotate 3 times (with any combination of ratchets or wheels) to get the room with hanging basket on the left, and empty room on the right to obtain an ancient bronze token
- Rotate 4 more times (with any combination of ratchets or wheels) to get the pile of rocks on the left, vending machine on the right to obtain an ancient bomb in exchange for the token
- Rotate 3 more times (with any combination of ratchets or wheels) to get the empty room on the left, and pile of rocks on the right to open the burial chamber
- An epic final battle with Ed the Undying awaits you in the burial chamber. Undying isn't just a fancy title -- Ed will take seven adventures of fighting to put down for good. If you get beaten up or run away, you'll have to fight him from the beginning again. When entering the burial chamber with less than seven adventures, you get the message:
- "Something tells you the last bit of this is going to take a long time. Come back when you've got more Adventures to spare."
- Once you finally beat him, you can take the Holy MacGuffin and return to the council for your reward.
- A handful of confetti. Yay.
- In your Quest Log under completed quests you will see: "You've handed the Holy MacGuffin over to the Council, and enjoyed a ticker-tape parade in your honor. That quest was so ridiculous, it wasn't even funny, and now it's over! Hooray!"
On initial visit:
- Ah, <name>, excellent timing. We've just received a message from the Distant Lands -- it seems that your father, the renowned archaeologist, has gone missing. Apparently, his life's work was to track down an ancient relic known only as the Holy MacGuffin. He left behind his diary, with instructions that it was to be delivered to you, but he didn't leave any funds to pay for shipping. So, you'll have to go pick it up yourself.
- You can travel there from the Travel Agency at The Shore, but there's a slight hitch -- the area you're going to requires a passport for entry, and our passport offices are temporarily closed due to a tiny photograph shortage. You'll need to acquire some forged identification documents from the Black Market instead, but we're not entirely sure where the Black Market actually is. It's probably near the Black Forest, though, and we'll mark that on your map for you.
- Once you've retrieved your father's diary, we request that you use his notes to track down the Holy MacGuffin for us, as an item of such power will obviously be of great help to us in our fight against the Naughty Sorceress and the other evils that plague our land. Good luck!
On subsequent visits:
- Any luck getting your father's diary and recovering the Holy MacGuffin? It's a pretty important whatchamacallit, so we'd apprecate it if you'd get on that right away.
- "Wow! You actually brought back the Holy MacGuffin, <name>? That's pretty darn impressive -- well done! Now we can pack it in an unlabelled wooden crate and stash it in a secret warehouse full of similar crates somewhere where it's likely that no one will ever see it again. Thanks for your help!"
- "That's it?" you ask. "That's pretty anti-climactic."
- "Yeah, you're probably right. You like parades? We could throw a parade."
- And one quick (though enjoyable) tickertape parade later, you're standing back in front of the Council Hall, picking bits of confetti out of your hair and wondering what you should do next.
<name> and the Quest for the Holy MacGuffin
- The Council has instructed you to collect your father's archaeology notes from Distant Lands, and use them to hunt down the Holy MacGuffin. Your first step is to find the Black Market, to get some forged ID.
After finding the Black Market:
- You've found the Black Market... now to hit the Travel Agency and get yourself on a slow boat to China. I mean, Distant Lands.
After obtaining your father's Holy MacGuffin diary:
- You've picked up your father's diary, and things just got a whole lot more complicated. Oh dear.
After reading your father's Holy MacGuffin Diary:
- Gotta Worship Them All
- You father seemed to think the hidden temple in the Distant Woods might be guarding part of the Staff of Ed. I hope you've got your lucky fedora with you.
- After passing the first test:
- You've cunningly evaded one of the Hidden Temple's traps. But what else lies in store? cue ominous music
- After passing the second test:
- Having proved that you ain't no hollaback girl, there's just one more trap to go. Pity dad never got around to translating that last passage...
- After opening the Hidden City:
- Awesome, you've evaded all of the temple's traps! Of course, it turned out that getting the piece of the Staff of Ed isn't going to be nearly that easy, but you were probably expecting that anyway. If you weren't, well, sorry.
- After completing defeating the Protector Spectre (subquest complete):
- You've defeated the ancient ghost of an ancient mummy of an ancient high priest and claimed his ancient amulet! Go you!
After reading your father's Holy MacGuffin Diary:
- Never Odd Or Even
- If you're going to get the Staff of Fats, it looks like the first step is to get into the Palindome. Maybe it has something to do with that amulet your father mentioned in his diary?
- After opening the Palindome:
- Congratulations, you've discovered the fabulous Palindome, rumored to be the final resting place of the legendary Staff of Fats! Now all you have to do is find it...
- After encountering Dr. Awkward:
- Well, you found the Staff of Fats, but then you lost it again. Good going. Looks like you're going to have to track down this Mr. Alarm guy for help...
- After talking to Mr. Alarm:
- Mr. Alan Alarm has agreed to help you nullify Dr. Awkward's ineptitude field (patent pending), but wants some wet stew in return. Those ingredients again: lion oil, a bird rib, and some stunt nuts. Sounds delicious!
- After returning with the wet stunt nut stew:
- Oh yeah, you've got the Mega Gem, and are ready to deliver some pain to Dr. Awkward. They call you the bus driver, because you're gonna beat the hell out of that guy.
- After defeating Dr. Awkward (subquest complete):
- Congratulations, you've recovered the long-lost Staff of Fats!
- Nice Work!
After reading your father's Holy MacGuffin Diary:
- In a Manor of Spooking
- Your father's notes indicate that the gem from the Staff of Ed is probably hidden in a Seaside Town mansion. At a guess, you figure Spookyraven Manor is probably your best bet.
- After unlocking the basement:
- You've unlocked the wine cellar in Spookyraven Manor. What are the chances there's a secret door hidden somewhere? Yeah, probably about one in one.
- After opening the summoning chamber:
- You've found Lord Spookyraven's secret black magic laboratory. When you're done with him, he'll be doing black and blue magic.
- After defeating Lord Spookyraven (subquest complete):
- You've defeated Lord Spookyraven and claimed the Eye of Ed! Huzzah!
After reading your father's Holy MacGuffin Diary:
- A Pyramid Scheme
- Your father's diary indicates that the key to finding the Holy MacGuffin is hidden somewhere in the desert. I hope you've got your walking shoes on.
- After finding An Oasis:
- You've managed to stumble upon a hidden oasis out in the desert. That should help make your desert explorations a little less... dry.
- After meeting Gnasir:
- The fremegn leader Gnasir has tasked you with finding a stone rose, at his abandoned encampment near the oasis. Apparently it's an ancient symbol of his tribe or something, I dunno, whatever. He's not gonna help you unless you get it for him, though.
- After returning with the stone rose:
- Gnasir has asked you to prove your honor and dedication to the tribe by painting his front door black. A menial task to be sure, but at least it's not dangerous.
- Well, unless you're really allergic to paint fumes or something.
- After painting Gnasir's door:
- Gnasir seemed satisfied with the tasks you performed for his tribe, and has asked you to come back later.
- Okay, that's probably long enough.
- After talking to Gnasir again:
- For your worm-riding training, you need to find a 'thumper', something that produces a rhythmic vibration to summon sandworms.
- It's unlikely that we're talking about bunny rabbits here.
- After finding a drum kit and returning to Gnasir:
- You need to find fifteen missing pages from Gnasir's worm-riding manual. Have fun!
- After finding the first manual page:
- One worm-riding manual page down, fourteen to go.
- After finding the second manual page:
- Two worm-riding manual pages down, thirteen to go. Sigh.
- After returning to Gnasir with all 15 pages:
- You've earned your hooks and are ready to ride the worm. Literally, not in the South-of-the-Border sense.
- After riding a worm to the pyramid:
- One excitingly-described worm-ride later, you've found the little pyramid with the map of Seaside Town inside. Looks like you're going to need the Staff of Ed to get the location of the Holy MacGuffin's hiding place.
- After opening the pyramid with the Staff of Ed:
- You've found the hidden buried pyramid that guards the Holy MacGuffin. You're so close you can almost taste it! (In a figurative sense, I mean -- I don't recommend you go around licking things you find in ancient tombs.)
- After beating Ed the Undying and recovering the Holy MacGuffin:
- The mighty Ed the Undying has fallen! You recovered the Holy MacGuffin! Jolly good show, mate!
- <name> and the Quest for the Holy MacGuffin
- You've handed the Holy MacGuffin over to the Council, and enjoyed a ticker-tape parade in your honor. That quest was so ridiculous, it wasn't even funny, and now it's over! Hooray!
- "MacGuffin" is a term popularized by Alfred Hitchcock; a MacGuffin is a plot device which is an object that motivates characters but is itself unimportant to the story.
- The name of this quest is a reference to the film Monty Python and the Holy Grail (sometimes called Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail), which is based upon "The Death of Arthur," more commonly known as part of the Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table legends. The fact that your father is looking for it refers to the film Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, in which Indiana Jones's father was searching for the Holy Grail.
- The name of the quest may also be a reference to a story arc of the webcomic Goats in which some of the characters steal an artifact called "The Holy MacGuffin" from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. After their theft, they mention trying to sell it on the black market -- a Kingdom of Loathing location which has a prominent role in this quest. The story arc in question starts here.
- The way you reveal the staircase by focusing sunlight through an amulet references Raiders of the Lost Ark, where Indiana Jones also focuses light through an amulet to find the location of the Ark. The Council's remarks about placing the MacGuffin in an unlabeled wooden crate in a secret warehouse somewhere is a reference to the ending of the same movie.
- The name of the first part ("Gotta Worship 'Em All!") is a reference to the Pokémon catchphrase "Gotta Catch 'Em All!" Additionally, Pokémon names like Pikachu, Squirtle, Charmander and Bulbasaur are parodied by Pikachutlotal, Squirtlcthulli, Charcoatl and Bulbazinalli respectively.
- The second part (Spookyraven Manor)has a reference to the game "Eternal Darkness". The glyphs found on the cellars walls are on the edges of a triangle of power and the description quotes "Your eyes are drawn to a pattern of odd glyphs, writ large, green, and luminescent on the cellar wall." The luminescent green light references to Xel'lotath. (Similar glyphs are a popular occurrence in Eternal Darkness)
- The stones, the necessity to put them into recesses on altars, the coloured light they emit, the choice of colours, and the triangular stones you obtain as a result may all be a reference to The Fifth Element
- The name of the third quest (Never Odd Or Even) is a Palindrome and might be a reference to the Weird Al Yancovic song "Bob".
- In the fourth part ("A Pyramid Scheme"), the riding sandworms with hooks comes from a Frank Herbert novel Dune.
- In the real world, a Pyramid Scheme is a get-rich-quick scheme in which one person (the person at the top of the "pyramid") pays to begin and then recruits two people who pay to participate. These people then recruit two more people, and they, along with everyone above them, receive a cut of the enrollment fee. In the end, only the people at the top few levels make a profit, as the amount of money taken in dwindles as one moves down the pyramid.
- The Quest Log entry "It's unlikely that we're talking about bunny rabbits here" when you need a drum machine is a reference to Thumper the rabbit from the Disney movie Bambi.
- The Quest Log entry about rabbits that is mentioned above could also be a reference to the Energizer Bunny.
- The Quest Log entry "They call you the bus driver, because you're gonna beat the hell out of that guy." is a parody of a common boastful saying, "You can call me the bus driver, because I just took you to school."
- The final Quest Log entry "That quest was so ridiculous, it wasn't even funny, and now it's over! Hooray!" refers to the fact that this is the Level 11 quest.
- The Council text about a "slow boat to China" is a nod to a Frank Loesser tune, "(I'd Like to Get You on a) Slow Boat to China", which is also mentioned in the first verse of the "Where In The World Is Carmen Sandiego" theme song by Rockapella.