Fisher Price: I Can Remember - FAQ/Walkthrough
Nintendo Entertainment System
Version 1.01
Contributed by Shifty50fs
E-Mail - Shifty50fs@msn.com

*************
* CONTENTS  *
*************

1. Legal
2. Timeline
3. Introduction
4. Controls
5. Getting Started
    a. Title Screen
    b. Selection Screen 1
    c. Selection Screen 2: Number of Players
    d. Single Player Mode of Play Selection Screen
    e. Name Input Screen
    f. Level Selection Screen
6. Gameplay
    a. Rules
    b. Scoring
    c. Game Screen
    d. How To
    e. Pictures
    f. Music
    g. Game Approaches
         1. What Not To Do
         2. What To Do
    h. Walkthrough
    i. Tips and Tricks
7. Concluding Remarks
8. Special Thanks

*********
* LEGAL *
*********

This document is copyright (c) by Dan Boyer in 2003.
This document may not be used in any public item, including websites,
without permission from Dan Boyer.
Permission may be attained via E-Mail (shifty50fs@msn.com).
This document may not be reproduced or distributed for profit.
All Fisher Price names, products, and designs are copyright (c) Fisher
Price in 1990.

************
* TIMELINE *
************

November 14, 2003 - 6:09:04 PM - got my hands on this great game from Fisher
Price...is there anything they make that isn't totally awesome?

November 14, 2003 - 6:15:07 PM - beat the game and entered the hall of fame
holding the coveted first slot.

November 14, 2003 - 6:29:42 PM - started typing this faq, typed controls.

November 15, 2003 - 1:33:39 PM - continued typing this faq, typed getting
started sections a through f and the introduction.

November 15, 2003 - 8:33:29 PM - continued typing this faq, typed gameplay
sections a through e.

November 16, 2003 - 12:43:53 PM - continued typing this faq, typed
walkthrough, re-did formatting.

November 17, 2003 - 5:11:45 PM - continued typing this faq, reformatted a bit,
deleted some excess, added some details, concluding remarks, and special
thanks.

November 17, 2003 - 5:54:35 PM - completed this faq.

******************
* INTRODUCTION   *
******************

Memory, according to the tenth addition of the Merriam-Webster's Collegiate
Dictionary, is the power or process of reproducing or recalling what has been
learned and retained especially through associative mechanisms.  One aspect
of memory is the ability to remember a certain object's previous location.  This
ability is what allows a person to find their way to the refrigerator day after
day, get their favorite food out and cook it without being talked through the
steps of doing so.  The ability to remember location also helps a person to get
home from school, work, or a store.  Without this ability, information would
have to constantly be relearned, wasting time and making life incredibly slow
and unproductive.

This raises the question, "How can I increase my memory's capacity for
information?"  The answer to this, simply, is practice.  Just like any other
muscle, the brain must be constantly conditioned and strengthened.  Each time
you are presented with a piece of information, your brain attempts to store it in
such a way that it can be recalled later.  The more times your brain does this,
the more efficient it will become and the faster and more complete your
memory recall will become.  To use a cliche, practice makes perfect.  And, just
as you wouldn't  practice your boxing skills by picking fights on the street, it is
best to practice your memory skills in a controlled situation allowing you to
focus on the singular task of increasing your memory's capacity for
information.

In other words: gaming.  Games are not merely for entertainment.  Games
expand the abilities of the mind and body by confronting the player with new
situations or difficult concepts.  Football, for instance, forces the body to
absorb impact, run fast, accelerate and decelerate quickly, catch moving
objects, and throw accurately.  Video games increase thinking skills with
puzzles and improve hand-eye-coordination by forcing the player to perform
complex acts of timing.

The game commonly referred to as 'Memory' or 'Concentration' is
the simplest way to improve one's memory.  It is a set of picture cards, each
card having a partner with the same picture.  The cards are spread out and
overturned and a player may turn over two cards, look at their picture,
and turn them back over.  The player's goal is to find matches, and, other
than getting lucky, the only way to find matches is to use one's memory.
The game is over when all cards have been paired up.  The game is very
beneficial to the memory of the player, especially if the player is very
young.  With faith in the game's ability to improve a person's memory, Fisher
Price, in naming their video game version of the game 'Memory,' boldly
stated "I Can Remember."

*************
* CONTROLS  *
*************

Throughout most of the game (exceptions will be noted in later sections) the
controls are as follows:

      D - Pad: move selection box
      Select - End game
      Start - Pause game
      A - Select current target
      B - Select current target

*********************
* GETTING STARTED   *
*********************

(|A|) Title Screen (|A|)

Upon inserting the Fisher Price: I Can Remember cartridge and hitting the
power button on your NES, you will see the copyright information followed
by a screen stating "Fisher Price presents."  During this, the song
'Old MacDonald" is played.  Two times through the melody and you see a
screen full of numbered blocks that soon disappear revealing the game title:
I CAN REMEMBER.  This is your first taste of the game, as the actual game
involves revealing a picture by removing matching blocks, so I hope you
liked what you saw.  You are then prompted to hit any button.  Hit a button
on your controller to be on your way.

(|B|) Selection Screen 1 (|B|)

After pressing any button at the title screen, you will encounter a screen that
allows you to either continue on to the game itself, or view the instructions for
gameplay.  Use the up and down directional buttons to choose between
playing the game and learning how to play.  Once you've highlighted the
desired choice, press any button (other than the D-pad...the game's use of
the term 'any button' is a bit deceptive here and inconsistent throughout the
game).  After explaining the actions necessary to set up the game, I will
regress to the instructions (game play) and fully explain the rules and
scoring of the game.

(|C|) Selection Screen 2: Number of Players (|C|)

The following screen, once again, offers you two choices.  You can choose
between playing by yourself, or playing against a friend...or enemy.  As
before, you use the up and down directional buttons to choose and, once
you've highlighted the appropriate choice, press any button other than the
D-pad to make your selection and move to the next screen.  If you happen to
have a second controller and a person to  play against, I recommend setting
the game for two players, as this will (depending on the intelligence of your
 partner) offer you a much more difficult and entertaining game.  However,
playing by yourself is also enjoyable.

(|D|) Single Player Mode of Play Selection Screen (|D|)

If you choose one player, you will be given two choices: play alone or play
against the computer.  Playing alone gives you the chance to practice your
memory skills without any competition.  There is no limit to the number of
guesses you can make, allowing you to finish even the most challenging
puzzles.  Playing against the computer pits you against Electro, a
super-computer of sorts with an impeccable memory for Fisher Price toys.

(|E|) Name Input Screen (|E|)

After choosing the single player mode of play or if you chose two players, the
next screen you see will be the nameinput screen for player 1.  Player 1 must
use the controller in slot one to select the letters in his/her name/nickname.
The name can be up to eight characters long including any spaces.
Numbers and symbols are unavailable to the player.

Upon entering the screen, the letter 'A' will be selected by a selection box.
The D-pad will move the selector from letter to letter.  Pressing the A or B
buttons will enter the currently selected letter into the next available spot in
the name.  If a mistake is made along the way, moving the selection box to
highlight the DEL option and pressing the A or B buttons will delete the
previously selected letter.  It can be selected multiple times to delete multiple
letters.  The space after Z and the space after DEL can be used to insert a
space in player 1's name.  When the desired name has been entered, moving
the selection box to the bottom right corner, thereby highlighting the END
option, and pressing the A or B buttons will select the inputted name as
player 1's name for the rest of the game.

If the two player mode of play has
been selected, player two will then be prompted to follow these same
instructions using the second player controller to enter his/her
name.

(|F|) Level Selection Screen (|F|)

Once the name(s) have been entered, the level selection screen appears.
There are three levels of play with increasing difficulty due to an increasing
number of picture cards.  The numbers of picture cards per level are as
follows:

        Level 1 - 12 picture cards, organized in a rectangle, with 6 matches to be
made
        Level 2 - 16 picture cards, organized in an octagon (the four corner
cards of a square organization of cards are removed), with 8 matches to be
made
        Level 3 - 20 picture cards, organized in a square, with 10 matches to be
made

        For beginners or the very young, levels 1 and 2 are appropriate, but
level 3 may become a bit overwhelming.  However, with practice, everyone
should be able to complete a level 3 puzzle.

*************
* GAMEPLAY  *
*************

(|A|) Rules (|A|)

This game has the same rules as the classic memory game it is based upon.  An
even number of picture cards, each having a matching card, are mixed up, set
out, and overturned to hide the pictures.  Players then take turns flipping a set
of two over and viewing the pictures.  If the cards match, they are removed,
the player earns a certain number of points, and the player takes another
turn.  If they do not, they are overturned and returned to their spot.  The
next player then gets a chance to go, following the same rules.

In the Fisher Price video game version of the game there are three rounds
of play.  Each round is over when all matches have been made and the
background picture has been uncovered.  The player with the highest
score after all three rounds is deemed the winner.

(|B|) Scoring (|B|)

Each match made is worth a certain number of valuable points.  Removing the
last pair and uncovering the entire background picture is also worth a number
of bonus points.  The scoring is as follows:

1st match....................500 points
2nd match....................400 points
3rd match....................350 points
4th match....................300 points
5th match....................250 points
6th match....................200 points
7th match....................175 points
8th match....................150 points
9th match....................125 points
10th match...................100 points
Last Pair Bonus..............300 points

The decreasing worth of each match as the game goes on is due to the
decreasing difficulty in finding matches as cards are eliminated.  In the
beginning there are many choices, but in the end it becomes much less
probable to make a mistake.

When a three round game has been completed, the scores are compared with
those of the current Hall of Fame.  If they are higher than any of them, they
are added to the hall of fame along with the name of the player who
accumulated the points.  Having one's name atop the list is a definite bonus as
it gives you the most bragging rights.  These bragging rights come in handy
with this very true formula:

personal best score + amount of bragging (bragging rights) = # of chicks

(|C|) Game Screen (|C|)

Here it is...the game you've been waiting for.  At first, it may seem a bit
overwhelming, but don't be frightened, you'll soon be navigating it like a pro.
The majority of the screen is filled with numbered and unnumbered blocks.
These are the picture cards overturned. The numbered ones are in play and
the unnumbered ones are out of play.  In Level 3, all cards are in play and
numbered.  On card 1 there is a green box.  This box is your selector.  In the
bottom left of the screen is a picture of a boy and a girl with your name on top.
This represents player 1.  Next to the picture are two numbers; a white one
and a green one.  The white one is your score so far this round and the
green one is your total score accumulated throughout the previously
played rounds of the current game.  In the middle of the lower portion of
the screen is a bit of text that states the round number you are currently
playing.  In the bottom right corner lies your opponent's information.

(|D|) How To (|D|)

Playing the game is really very simple.  You control a selection box that
can be positioned over a numbered card using the D-Pad.  When it is selecting
the desired card, press A or B to flip the card over.  When you have flipped
two cards over, they will be turned back over, unless the pictures on the other
side match, at which point they will be removed from the screen and replaced
with a piece of the background picture.  The appropriate number of points is
then added to that player's white score. If they did not match, the next player
will have control of the selection box.  If you would like to pause the game,
pressing the start button will do so, though it will not work until all cards are
overturned so you cannot cheat.  If you decide the game is not going well or
you would like to change your name, the players, or the level, pressing the
select button will end the current game and send you to the play again option
screen that gives you two choices.  Starting a new game with the same names,
players, and level, or starting a new game and re-entering all information to
change the settings.  It is just like any other menu selection screen in the game
(D-Pad up or down moves selection arrow, any other button aside from left and
right will select the currently highlighted item).  When a round of play is
completed, a new screen will appear with the following text:

*name of winner*, You did very well in this round.
Press any button to continue.

Press any button to move on to the next round of play.  The rules are the same,
but you'll notice some changes to the screen.  The white scores will be reset to
0 and the green scores will have been updated to include the last rounds score
for each player.  After the third round a screen will appear stating the name of
the person with the highest total score for all three rounds.  The text displayed
will be as follows:

*name of winner* Wonderful!  You have a great total!
Press any button to continue.

Pressing any button will send you to the hall of fame screen which has a list of
high scores and the names of those who made them.  By pressing any button
you will be taken to the play again option screen mentioned earlier in this
section.

(|E|) Pictures (|E|)

Each card has a picture on one side which you use to match them up.  These
pictures are all toys made by Fisher Price in 1990.  The 8-bit drawings are
pretty sketchy and the toys are all 13 years old so the official names are
uncertain in many cases, but this section will attempt to list most of the toys for
those who are curious.

Burger,
Miniature Golf,
Ball Popper,
Red Car,
Mixer,
Yellow Car,
Cash Register,
Xylophone,
Penguin,
Humpty Dumpty,
Drum,
Teddy Bear,
Music Maker,
Bubble Lawnmower,
Cassette Tape,
Bowling Pins,
Phone,
People,
Stacking Rings,
Blue Camera,
Horse,
Table,
Firetruck,
Airplane.

This is far from complete and I'm very aware.  I excluded any that I could
not name due to picture quality.

When a puzzle is completed, a large background picture is revealed.
They include the following:

Oven,
Jet Plane,
Check-out Line,
Microphone,
Vacuum,
T-ball,
Movie Camera.


(|F|) Music (|F|)

This game has a soundtrack of several traditional children's tunes.  They are as
follows, listed next to the place they are played:

Title Screen: Old MacDonald

Game: Mary Had A Little Lamb, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star or the Alphabet
Song, a variation on Twinkle Twinkle Little Star or the Alphabet Song

Win Game or Win Round: Pop Goes the Weasel

Hall of Fame: Three Blind Mice

(|G|) Game Approaches (|G|)

1. Approaches

Fisher Price: I Can Remember is a game that combines memory and luck to
produce an entertaining and educational experience.  Unfortunately, each
game is set up randomly, making writing any information for aiding one's
gameplay difficult.  There are many ways to improve one's efficiency and
ability to remember the location of the pictures, and I have decided that the
best way to illustrate these tricks is a walkthrough.  Keep in mind, the game is
randomly set up so it is almost guaranteed that you will never see this set up of
cards.  However, by describing the way I handle various situations, I hope to
reveal some tricks for improving your game.

After setting up my game as a Level 1 single player game, I view my challenge:
16 numbered cards with 8 different pictures, all hidden from my sight.  The way
I see it, I have three ways to go about solving this puzzle: the slow methodical
way that relies on neither luck nor memory - solely the fact that by turning over
all possible combinations the game will eventually be won, the occasionally fast,
irradic way that is fit for the person who can guess the right answer to any
question, and my way - the right way....or so I like to think.  Actually there are
many methods and all are right depending on the situation
(level, opponent, etc.).

2. What Not To Do

Method 1: Begin by turning over number 1 and number 2.  If they do not match,
turn over numbers 1 and 3.  Continue increasing the second number until you
find the matching picture.  Then increase the first number and begin the
process again.  Using this method, you will definitely complete the puzzle, but
at the cost of speed.  Losing speed of completion will cause you to miss out on
valuable points that could be being gobbled up by your opponent.

Method 2: Begin by choosing 2 cards.  Next a different combination of
cards.  Follow that up with a completely different set of cards.  And another.
Oh yea...this is gonna work.  Don't ever do this, please.  It's an insult to the
game as the point of the game is to remember things....its not
Fisher Price: I Can Guess.

3. What To Do

This is how I choose to approach the game.  Systematically move from
numbers 1 to 12, 16, 20, depending on the level, never choosing the same
card unless you have discovered a card that matches a previous card.  By
moving in a pattern, it becomes easier to remember the location of the
pictures.  By not repeating the same card more than once unless it is
found to match another, you eliminate a lot of wasted turns.

(|H|) Walkthrough (|H|)

Keep in mind, each game is set up completely randomly so this is simply
an example game and shows how I would approach the game.  It is unlikely
that you will ever see this same game, but hopefully, seeing me in action
illustrates the tactics I use.

Firstly, I turn over cards 1 and 2 and find them to be a fire truck and
humpty dumpty, respectively.  After they are overturned, I flip card 3.
It happens to be a firetruck, and, using my memory, I flip card 1 again
to find the pair.  The cards are removed and I move on to card 4,
bowling pins, and card 5, an airplane.  Having no matches with these
I flip card 6 which is the second set of bowling pins, so I go back to
card 4 to make the pair.  Card 7 happens to be the airplane, so I go back
to find yet another match.  Cards 8 and 9 are new: the ball popper and
a teddy bear.  Card 10 is a popper, so I go back to card 8 for a match.
Card 11 matches with the teddy bear, and the final two cards, numbers
12 and 2, are humpty dumpty portraits.  In a level 1 game the least
number of turns the game can be completed in is 6 and I managed to
win in 9.

Analysis:

I kept a consistent pattern to the way I moved through the cards,
this helped me to remember the locations of the pictures.

I didn't repeatedly flip the same card, increasing my efficiency.

(|I|) Tips And Tricks (|I|)

If you thing the second card you flip matches a previously flipped
card, in the next turn, go back to the previously flipped card first
so that just in case you thought wrong you still have a chance to
guess another card.  Sometimes you'll get lucky.  If you do it the
other way, it will simply be a wasted turn.

Always be vigilant as another player is taking their turn.  Not only
is it giving them a chance to see the cards, but it is also a chance for
you to find matches that they happen to miss.

If you see a pair while another player is going, there are several ways
to remember where that match is.  You can rely on your memory,
which will be more successful for some than others, or you can use some
type of memory aiding device.  I find it helpful to make a larger number
out of the two numbers.  Say that matching cards are 1 and 6, I would
remember the number 61.  Remember to put the larger number first since
if i had remembered the number 16, I could have become confused
and flipped card 16, missing a great opportunity.

For those of you who like to cheat...if you find it impossibly
difficult to remember locations of pictures, make a notebook
and jot down the numbers and their pictures as they are
revealed.

*************************
*  CONCLUDING REMARKS   *
*************************

This is a great teaching tool and games like this should be more widespread.
Memory is a key factor in the intelligence of a person and games
like this will help you increase your memory's capacity greatly.
However, being made for children, the game is slow paced and
lacks variety, so I doubt many people over 5 will find much enjoyment
in it.  But, if you do play the game, it will be accompanied by a nostalgic wave
that will take you back to your roots of innocent fun and gaming, a time
when you didn't have to blow up someone's head to enjoy a game, a
time when you could sit for hours with 2 buttons, a 4 track melody,
and a game with the name Fisher Price on it.  Ahhh...those were the days.

********************
* SPECIALS THANKS  *
********************

gamefaqs.com and CJayC,
Fisher Price,
Tool,
The New Deal.


send comments to shifty50fs@msn.com

This document is copyrighted by Dan Boyer in 2003.