There's a moment early on in Grim Fandango in which Manny Calavera, a down-on-his-luck travel salesman for the El Marrow branch of the Department of Death (DOD), finds himself negotiating with a braggart clown. "I can do anything," he insists, bitter that his balloon-animal stall has been overlooked in the greater hubbub of the DOD parade. "Bet you can't do Robert Frost," quips Manny. Five seconds later, Manny's walking around with a twisted, helium-filled poet. The balloon is useless, as it's not needed to solve any of this adventure game's puzzles. But the whimsical irreverence, the comic wastefulness, speaks to an age of sillier and more off-the-cuff games.