JumpStart Adventures 4th Grade: Haunted Island is a JumpStart game that was made by Knowledge Adventure in 1996. As the title suggests, the game is intended to teach a fourth grade curriculum. It was later replaced by JumpStart Adventures 4th Grade: Sapphire Falls in 2000.
In its original release, it contained KnowledgeLand as a bonus disc.
Story and Gameplay
In this game, the player is a fourth-grade student who was absent from school one day. On that day, the rest of the player's class had a substitute teacher, a witch named Ms. Grunkle. She transformed the player's classmates into monsters and locked them up in the attic of her house.
After signing in at the schoolhouse, the player is transported to Haunted Island. With the aid of a large purple bat named Flap and a fortune teller named Madame Pomreeda, the player must rescue the thirteen classmates by collecting each student's most prized possessions by completing quests around the island. Madame Pomreeda will give the player Challenge Cards. Each challenge card requires the player to complete two activities somewhere on the island. When both activities have been completed, one of the student's prized possessions will appear. The player must collect four possessions for each student. After all four of a classmate's possessions are obtained, Madame Pomreeda will be able to transform the classmate back to normal by reciting a special spell.
The player has a limited amount of "health", which is indicated by a candle in the upper left hand corner of the screen. Health is depleted when the player answers Repsac's questions incorrectly, and this is indicated by the candle burning down. If the candle burns out, the player is cast into the island's labyrinth, which they must then navigate their way out of. The labyrinth contains a "fountain of health" that will cause the candle to re-burn and, eventually, grow back to its original size.
The player earns points during activities by correctly solving problems. For every five thousand points earned, the player receives one of the 25 keys to Ms. Grunkle's house. Each door in Ms Grunkle's house has five locks, and thus requires five keys to be opened. Whenever a room is entered for the first time, Ms. Grunkle will appear and cast the player into the labyrinth. Once the player advances all the way through her house and makes it into her attic, where the rest of the class is locked up, the game is completed. However, if some of the kids are still monsters when the player reaches that attic, Flap informs the player they will have to be changed back before the attic can be entered.
At the beginning of the opening, the schoolhouse is shown. The atmosphere is pleasant, and two bluebirds fly around the school. Suddenly, lightning flashes. The schoolhouse and the fence take on a twisted shape, and the bluebirds turn into bats.
Inside the schoolhouse, the substitute teacher named Ms. Grunkle, who is really a witch, casts a spell on all of the frightened fourth grade students, turning them all into monsters. Then Ms. Grunkle flies away on her broomstick back to her house at the Haunted Island. Along the way, she drops the skeleton keys to her home and her magic wand by Madame Pomreeda's carriage.
Once the player enters the attic, Ms. Grunkle attempts to transform all the students back into monsters, along with the player.
However, the player produces Ms. Grunkle's magic wand, which protects the kids from the spell. Ms. Grunkle is temporarily shocked that the user has acquired her wand, but then realizes that Madame Pomreeda must be responsible.
With that, Ms. Grunkle acknowledges defeat and flies out the window on her broom. A piece of paper she leaves behind on the floor reveals the schoolhouse being restored to its original state.
- Main article: The Kids
They transformed into monsters when Ms. Grunkle cast spells on them. Each gaining their own unique, horrible, transformed state. They return into human form once the player solves the riddles and challenges which then break the previous spells. There are thirteen children in the yearbook.
- Graveyard Ghost - The glowing soul who is released from his grave every time the player fills the Mad Libs style inscriptions that appear on his tombstone. He serves as a narrator for telling the spooky stories that appear on his tombstone. He is possibly inspired by the late actor, Rodney Dangerfield.
- Grim Reaper - The unseen character who is mentioned a lot by the graveyard ghost. If the player doesn't complete the tombstone in time to save three souls as Madame Pomreeda requests, he'll be on his way to invade the cemetery and the game is over.
- Frog/Red-Headed Prince - He appears in "The Enchanted Forest" as a frog who doesn't like being green and wart covered. The player gets to make a potion to save him, or else Ms. Grunkle will make the situation worse. When the potion is completed three times, the frog transforms into a red-headed prince who speaks with a British accent.
- Bugs - These critters appear in "The Spider Web", and are controlled by Ms. Grunkle. The player gets to spell a word by guiding a spider through each part of the web one by one using the arrow keys on the keyboard to control its movement. Apparently Madame Pomreeda thinks of these bugs as cute, which the bugs themselves disagree with.
- Semimoto - He lives in the "Clock Tower". He plays the piano which makes sounds like an organ when it's in the Treble Clef mode on the easiest level of the game. The player moves his hands by using the mouse to control his articulation. He is somewhat based on the character Quasimodo from Victor Hugo's novel, The Hunchback of Notre Dame.
- Other Jumpstart characters - Several characters from other JumpStart games make cameo appearances in the woods. They can't be interacted with. These characters include:
Locations and Activities
- The Spider's Web
- The Toad Well
- The Mutant Swamp
- The Clock Tower
- The Cemetery
- The Mummy's Tomb
- The Vampire Maze
- The Pirate Ship
- The Enchanted Forest
- The Labyrinth
- Ms. Grunkle's House
- The Woods
- Information Gravestones
- Madame Pomreeda's Cart
- Fractions and Decimals
- Addition and Subtraction
- Multiplication and Division
- Long Division
- Famous People
- Parts of Speech
- Users must play a minimum of 104 activities in order to win the game, as a minimum of two different activities must be played for each of the fifty-two cards must be played for each of the thirteen children.
- Curiously, Ms. Grunkle is sometimes referred to as "Mrs. Grunkle," prompting one to wonder whatever became of husband. In her living room is a skeleton who sits around watching the television while holding a remote, which some fans have speculated may have been her husband at one point.