Bean-with-Bacon Megarocket

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The Bean-with-Bacon Megarocket from Keen 4

The Bean-with-Bacon Megarocket (BwB) is a spaceship built by Keen, and his primary method of transportation. According to the games, it was made from "common household objects" and "old soup cans, rubber cement and plastic tubing".[1]

Four of the most important parts are:

Joystick (from Keen's brother's Nintendo video game) for manual flight control[1]
Car Battery.png
Car Battery (from Keen's mom's car) for electrical systems power[1]
Vacuum Cleaner.png
Vacuum Cleaner (reworked as an ion propulsion unit)[1]
Everclear (from Keen's father's liquor cabinet) alcohol for fuel[1]

The ship was so named precisely because it was primarily constructed out of the aforementioned soup cans. According to 3D Realms' site, the name was a reference to a George Carlin skit which suggested placing bay leaves under your arms instead of deodorant, creating a soup aroma; he mentions the soup "Bean-with-Bacon". (Keen's developers admit this is an obscure reference.)[2]

Appearances in games

BwB from Keen 1
BwB from Keen GBC

In Keen 1, Vorticons from the planet Vorticon VI steal four crucial parts from the ship while Keen has it parked on Mars, and scatter them around the planet in the hope that Keen will not be able to find them again.[3] The parts are the four mentioned above: the joystick, the car battery, the vacuum cleaner and the everclear.[1]

In all the Keen games (except for Keen Dreams) the BwB can be seen in the overhead world map. In Keen 1 and Keen 3, you can try to "enter" the ship, which prompts different messages. In Keen 1, it shows a list of the parts that are still missing. In Keen 3, it shows four different messages randomly:

  • Into the ship your journey, lie about a bit, then resume your quest for the Grand Intellect!
  • Entering the ship might be a fun thing to do, but right now you need to find the Grand Intellect and vanquish him!
  • You enter your ship, sit around for a while, get bored, then remember that you have to find the Grand Intellect!
  • You feel like entering the ship and taking a rest, but the mystery of the Grand Intellect's identity changes your mind.

The BwB is level 18 in Keen 4 and level 17 in Keen 6.

The megarocket also appears in Keen 5 as well, but since Keen's ship is docked to the space station in this episode, it is not accessible (similar to the ship in Keen 2). However, there is a level entry text in the executable file, which simply says "Keen will not be in the BWBMegarocket". The tilemap for this level was never done, and thus, it is not included in the gamemaps file.