Greetings, Visitor

Welcome to The Claw Museum. This is a place where fans of Monolith’s legendary 1997 PC game can share their experiences with the game.

Grey Cat’s Story

Sauber9′s Story

Teo phil’s Story

Randy’s Story

Email from DzjeeAr

Email from Steven Applebaum

Email from Gultigargar/Mr Cat

Comment from Aavishkar Patel

Comment from Rivendels

Links

The Claw Recluse — Download Claw for free!

Grey Cat’s Claw Videos

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9 Comments »

    Ah, nostalgia…

    I first played Claw in December 1999, when it was bundled with a special, Christmas issue of PC World. I still have the magazine and the Claw CD, the latter so frequently used that it probably doesn’t work anymore. Since they chose to include cheats in the game description, I pretty much started using them right away. Even so, I couldn’t figure out how to beat the level 8 boss, and shelved the game for a few months. The following summer I visited my cousins and introduced them to Claw. Together, playing in turns and still cheating like crazy, we completed it for the first time.

    The next step was to do that again, this time without cheats. It turned out easier than I had expected, though by that time I didn’t even attempt to collect a lot of treasure, not to mention challenging for a top 50 score. However, practice makes perfect. By the end of 2001, I have read Rich’s walkthroughs and was ranked on the high scores list for the first time. Eventually, I’ve got all there was to get — without the infamous infinite loop glitch, that is.

    In the meantime, I started using the WapWorld editor. The fun thing is that it was advertised as included with the game on the PC World cover, and there was even a short guide with screenshots in the magazine, but the editor itself was nowhere to be found on the CD. Eventually, I downloaded it in October 2000 (which was no small feat considering we were on a 56kbps dial-up connection at the time) and immediately started messing up with retail level 8. Thanks to a backup on a 3,5” floppy, the masterpiece survived to this day, and among my achievements are changing the default color (i.e. water) to yellow and placing an excessive amount of pearl necklaces. Not bad for a start, eh?

    Soon after, I started working on a first proper level, using the Tiger Island tileset. It was fully playable by the end of the year, complete with a boss fight, way too many warps, weird secret areas, and other crazy stuff you’d expect from an 11-year-old. The tiles were properly matched, though :) During the next year and a half I became more interested in the Claw high scores list, and started designing Jazz Jackrabbit 2 levels. It wasn’t until mid-2002 that I dusted off my old level. With the existing part heavily redesigned, and much more added, it was released as Treasure Island on August 21, 2002. Randy was the first person to receive it.

    Finn’s website, though still accessible, hadn’t been updated anymore, and e-mail was pretty much the only way to make a new level available to the public at that time (which is probably why so few levels from that time frame have survived). Treasure Island became fairly popular, and I even set up a Claw downloads website so as to make it easily obtainable. To the disappointment of many, including Aavishkar Patel, I wasn’t able to update the site regularly due to various circumstances. After a year or two, it was taken down.

    In mid-2004, I finally got proper internet access, received a pile of e-mail from the last few months and visited the forum, where I was still remembered by some. Primarily as ‘the guy who doesn’t respond to our e-mails’, but whatever. It was all short-lived anyway, as in a few weeks I found the forum inaccessible. When it returned in early 2005, it wasn’t the same place it used to be. However, that year later proved to be a turning point in the history of the Claw community. It was then that The Claw Recluse (known as Belated Claw Fansite at the time) really began, followed by Gunner’s and Zuczek’s forums. To this day, I continue to manage the site with Zuczek, as well as the Polish forum and an IRC channel we’ve set up in April 2010. There’s also Zuczek’s YouTube channel with an exceptional collection of Claw videos. Between 2006 and 2010 I’ve designed seven further levels, some of which have enjoyed an absolutely unprecedented success in the Polish community.

    The Claw Recluse is actually getting more and more hits each year (as much as 25k per month this summer), with quite a lot of foreign visitors, primarily from Latin America. New custom levels are still being designed, talked about and played, mainly in multiplayer matches. There’s even an ongoing attempt at reverse-engineering the .wwd and .rez formats so as to create a new version of the WapWorld editor. While I’m not involved in this project, it looks like there’s been reasonable progress so far. Also, we’ve heard from Randy and it turns out he’s halfway done with a new custom level. I can’t wait.

    It’s funny you mentioned Blackout. Coincidentally, we’ve picked it for a huge multiplayer game just the other day. Damn, what a challenge it was. Some of the areas were quite annoying, but it only added to the satisfaction of having finished the level. And I don’t think I’ve ever been so overjoyed to see a checkpoint flag ;) Anyway, several players made it all the way to the boss fight, with the winner collecting over 90% of all the treasure. Now that’s just crazy. And no, it wasn’t me, in case you were wondering ;p

    As for the DVD version, remember when we discussed how 1k downloads might be perhaps a bit too optimistic? It’s past 20k now and still going strong. Quite an achievement, considering that it’s still the very same, old torrent that took three days or something to upload with my crappy internet connection back in early 2006. On a side note, I’ve recently found the original Claw DVD on sale at a Polish auction site. For the equivalent of less than 2 USD, that really was a no-brainer. The disc isn’t in perfect condition, and there’s nothing else besides a standard, black CD box, but hey, does it even matter for a fan?

    Here’s a few links every Claw fan should bookmark:

    http://kapitanpazur.piasta.pl/ — The Claw Recluse.
    http://www.youtube.com/LethalPwnager — Zuczek’s channel on YouTube. Be sure to watch the Wreckage trailer ;p
    http://webchat.quakenet.org/?channels=captain.claw — our IRC channel on QuakeNet.

    Comment by Teo phil — September 5, 2010 @ 7:26 pm


    Might post something more in depth later here, but I just wanted to say damn that Nikita game looks frickin’ awful. (Doesn’t some of the game play look like the new gen Sonic series?)

    Should’ve had the patience to finish a level back in the “golden era” where someone might have actually gave a shit versus now heh, but oh well… I might make one anyway… this website is pretty neat though; might be cool to have a forum-like place anyway so people have the option despite little posting…

    If I may request one last thing however as a final nail in the Claw coffin: can you point out to me the exact spots where some of treasure is out of reach in the levels? I want to edit some of the level files so obtaining 100% is possible; then replace the originals with those in the rez file (for whenever I play this thing again heh)

    Comment by Xero — September 6, 2010 @ 4:25 am


    @ Teo phil
    It’s quite incredible what the Polish community is doing. And the Wreckage video was amazing! How did you two get a reversed cliff tile? It caused me great annoyance when making Den of Thieves that Monolith had only given us one side of a cliff face to work with.

    I agree about there not being many levels from the first part of the 2K years. There’s tons of levels before 2001. There’s tons of levels after 2004. But in between, there’s almost nothing!

    It was cool to hear about the Blackout multiplayer game. I deserve every harsh word anyone ever said about that level. At the end I had become sick of working on it and just started throwing puzzles together without thinking about whether they would be fun or not. And Treasurer’s boss is really, really confusing. I think I had to cheat to beat it.

    @ Xero

    I don’t know what they were thinking with that game. Every second I watch contains ten bad things that jump out at me. It has tons of entertainment value, probably not the sort they were hoping for, though.

    About levels, gee, I dunno, you’d have to speak to Teo about that. Going from my very bad memory I think there’s a coin in level 2, a missing coin, ring, and gold bar in level 14, and one or two other levels I can’t remember.

    Comment by bensheffield — September 6, 2010 @ 12:16 pm


    @ Xero:

    Actually, there are only two such places: in level 9, there’s an unreachable crate at 15980, 7797, containing a goldbar, and in level 14, there’s a tiger guard at 10787, 2465 that has wrong x min/max coordinates and thus turns up somewhere outside the gameplay area.

    Then there’s also the infamous coin in level 2, which can actually be reached in a tricky way: whenever Claw is hit and takes damage, you can attempt to jump again while still in the air. It’s not easy, and definitely random at times, but it can be done. Here’s a video showing the trick: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBS_wqCb03Q

    @ Grey Cat:

    It turns out that tile images can be used as objects. Not only can you then mirror or invert a tile, but also place it anywhere you want, without being limited by the 64×64 grid. The downside is that excessive amount of such objects causes heavy fps drops on some hardware configurations.

    In Blackout, none of us could beat the second boss either. I mean the one using Aquatis’ logic. It just didn’t work for some reason. To be honest, I’ve never been a fan of those non-retail boss fights anyway. As for Treasurer, you know that he made a 200 KB level called Assassin back in 2007, right? I just can’t imagine anyone finishing it. Seriously, even Blackout is a cakewalk compared to that one.

    Oh, and here’s a fun screenshot you might want to add to the section on the left: 14 players competing in one multiplayer game, with each of them actually visible on screen: http://kapitanpazur.piasta.pl/img/misc/mprecord.jpg

    Comment by Teo phil — September 6, 2010 @ 6:12 pm


    mas achorao lo que aquatis lo coje ha y cierto cuales son sus tecnicas para destruir al que esta en puerto de lobos así como se destruye al enemigo del segundo nivel que cuando ya estas cerca de llegar arriba das un espadaso

    Comment by cristian — September 21, 2010 @ 1:47 am


    My first contact with Claw was in 1998, when I was 6 years old. The CD was, luckily, bundled with a Creative SoundBlaster (Soundcard) which came as a gift from the entire hardware pack. This pack was so awesome that the best games I’ve already played in my life were from that. Among those other games I’ve received Twinsen’s Odyssey’s (LBA2), Moto Racer, Time Commando and others. Claw was my favorite among those games. It was impressive to besides receive a new computer (for the time) receive also a great game pack! As I’ve already told friend Pawel I had become stuck on level 6 with Wolvington, which till now, in my opinion is one of the most difficult bosses in the game. After a great time, in my 6 year-old life to manage to defeat Wolvington I had reached the other levels till the 14th and last level. Surprisingly I had bad times with the exactly final part of the level, just before the battle with Omar. This part was that which those appearing/disappearing platforms going up and down happened to exist.. Then a long time had passed and unfortunately I had also lost my original Claw CD portuguese version :( :( A great hiatus happened between me and Claw. If I’m not wrong I lost the CD around 2001 and began to play it again in 2007 thanks to someone who had told me about the existance of the torrent downloads. So at the end of 2007 (November) I had found my favorite game once again and, besides, in a version that I hadn’t known before(the spanish one) and my original and official language portuguese version. Up to nowadays I play Claw and it’s still among the best games I’ve already played.

    Comment by Sauber9 — October 3, 2010 @ 1:57 am


    Nice summary of all those good childhood years I spent playing Claw, designing levels with wapworld and using the forum on good old 56k dial-up internet. I am at university now, which provides me with 100 Mbit internet, and play games on a monster gaming rig, but I still do have claw installed on a virtual machine and actually sometimes do play it or some custom levels occasionally. I still remember most of the old tricks and things ;)

    @ The “15-Hit Bear Sailor” : I seriously don’t know how I came up with that and must’ve indeed been confused (maybe I had the weakening cheat code on :P ). I vaguely remember it had to something with something being negative, but can’t say. Haven’t used wapworld for like 5 or 6 years.

    I still respect claw a lot. The game’s graphics still look great it’s amazing how a game designed in 1996-97 or so can run in 1280×720 and look brilliant at that resolution. I doubt I will ever make any custom levels anymore though.

    Comment by Aavishkar Patel — October 11, 2010 @ 3:38 pm


    claw is just the ultimate side scrolling game for people who like the older style game , the custom levels are great ,i enjoy playing them ,it means claw will live for ever . some one has a fan site on face book so claw is still very popular.more info should be published on how to make a custom level for beginners and how to get the program to work on windows 7 . if we all have claw in our hearts the game should live on for ever.

    Comment by Rivendells — November 8, 2010 @ 9:59 pm


    Hi all, and thanks for the comments.

    Dz sent this email:

    “Heh, this is quite interesting!

    I thought the community was pretty much dead, which is quite a shame to be honest. Looking back at it, it was a rather fun part of my own youth :) And it’s great to hear from you again! Seems I’m not the only one ‘plagued’ by nostalgia.

    It’s funny you dubbed me the ‘unofficial leader’ of the community considering I sooner bestowed that title to you. You were the one with a major website dedicated to claw anyway and you made a lot of good levels. The main reason I didn’t play them that much is because I’m not much of a claw-player to begin with :p The main reason I played it was to test my own levels, wether they functioned properly. I should probably apologize if I critisized your levels too hard at the time; if I considered anyone a “rival” it was you, when it came to level design.

    Considering I started this email about twelve hours before sending it I’m not sure if I can find the time or motivation to actually write anything on the site itself, but all the same it’s good to hear from you and to hear you still have fond memories of that time :)

    Cheers!

    ~ DzjeeAr”

    Comment by bensheffield — February 12, 2011 @ 11:54 am




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