MINOR SPOILER FOR THE SECRET OF MONKEY ISLAND!
For me it was on the boat in ‘The secret of Monkey island.’ I’d loved playing the game up until that point but I’d been dying to get off the island and sail the high seas. Needless to say, as soon I was on the boat and out at sea, I became irrevocably stuck. My short lived feelings of freedom and limitless adventure had come screeching to a halt when I found myself unable to unlock a chest (or a cabinet. I can’t remember.) I couldn’t work out how to do it or how to get someone else to do it. I tried for a few weeks, coming back to the game and touring endlessly around the ship, before sadly closing the game again. Every so often, while doing something else, I’d think I’d worked it out and would fire up the computer and the game only to be cruelly disappointed.
I have to explain, before I tell you how long the puzzle took me, that none of my friends had computers let alone played computer games in those days (we lived in the north of England, we only received electricity in 1972) and the concept of a magical document called a ‘walkthrough’ didn’t even exist in my brain.
It was six months before, on one of my increasingly sporadic and seemingly fruitless tours of the ship, I looked at the cereal packet and realised I could open it. Inside was a toy key. My joy was unbounded as I unlocked the chest and the rest of the game.