I've been on a bit of adventure gaming kick lately! Adventure games are still my favorite genre even though nobody makes them anymore and lately I've been trying to play any ones that I haven't yet. At least two adventure games actually did come out in 2002 and I managed to snag both like a burglar! One of these games was Syberia which I already reviewed and the other is this game. I tried to burn these from somebody else (no I didn't) before I bought them and it didn't work. I wish it had though.
This game isn't very good. The secret is this: although it was released here in the angry grrgrr United States in 2002, this game was actually made in 1999. It is an Italian game!!! It just only got brought over here by some white boys named Got Game Entertainment. The manual has some clear translation errors. It's odd because it uses perfect English (with some rather flashy words no less) for the story but starts to make a lot less sense afterwards. For example, it says the following about the "Load Game" option: "Each time Tony changes scene the game is saved automatically so that you will restart playing from the last positioned visited. This option also allows restarting the game in case Tony takes over causing the game to end." I don't understand what this means. Tony doesn't take over anything in this game. Also, there's no way to die or make the game end other than beating it entirely so whazzit?
This game has okay graphics. It is trying to look all cartoony like Day Of The Tentacle (and it has like two references to it and one to Monkey Island) but it is not quite as good and also that is a better game (and so is Monkey Island). The midi music wasn't very good or not memorable anyway and the voice acting was really shitty. I mean it wasn't that bad for every character but Tony's voice is the most annoying voice ever I think and considering he's the protagonist pthfhthabsbblpoloosl. Fuck that shit. I turned the voices off and just read the text. It made me happier! Actually, some of the jokes that would've just been corny (like the majority) if I had heard them done with the shitty voice seemed genuinely witty when read. Maybe I am just a stup.
This game has too many jokes that are very long I think. It also has parts where people recite full poems. I ended up skipping a lot of text.
I remember the box of this game (which I just threw away to conserve space, you see) touted something like "46 levels!" and then also claimed "Bonus level!" as if this bonus level was sooooooo good that it was supposed to add to your want to purchase the game. Incidentally, by levels they really mean screens. Basically you traverse through 46 screens (AND A BONUS SCREEN!!!) and that's the game. The game has a Day Of The Tentacle (or Maniac Mansion) style of basically basing almost an entire game in one locale (a Halloween-themed amusement park).
The problem is this: this game only really has a couple of screens so you'd think they'd jam a bunch of puzzles into each one. NEIN. Instead, you get like one or two puzzles on each. I actually walked around the game for awhile feeling like I hadn't really accomplished anything big and then I checked a FAQ and found out I had already completed a considerable portion of the game. I actually ended up cheating on this game but only a bit. One time was only because I couldn't tell there was an exit on one screen and other than that it was only because the solution was some outlandish idea no one would ever think of.
The game also does this really annoying thing where it makes you think there is more to do in a location when its actually just extraneous crap. It's nice in adventure games when you can look at and attempt to interact with almost any object in the scene, just to add to the environment and interactivity. However, it's not cool to mislead me and then also to make me cry. That is what this game does.
Here is an example. On one screen there is a mouse. You can click on him and he will run to the right. If you go to the right, you will see the mouse on the next screen. You can click on him again and he will again run to the right. You can follow him again. You can do this for several screens until you chase him all the way back into his mousehole, which you can then try to perform actions on. The fact that all this is in the game might lead one to think that getting inside that mousehole somehow might be important. In actuality, the whole mouse thing is just nonsense and has absolutely no relevancy to completing the game. There are other things in the game like this. It is dumb.
This game also has a stupid inventory combining engine dealy. Here's a good way to put it: You can USE a GLASS OF LIQUID on a CAULDRON to put the liquid into the cauldron but you cannot USE the CAULDRON on the GLASS OF LIQUID. It will not combine. Stupid.
I really can't say I enjoyed myself all that much with this game. It really went quite quickly, largely because I made an effort to play through it fast as there wasn't really any incentive to enjoy it. I guess Syberia is the best adventure game of 2002 as this game was really its only competition. The main thing that game had over this one was the story. Although it seemed slopped together in places and depended largely on suspension of disbelief, it was kind of interesting. Tony Tough And The Night Of The Roasted Moths, on the other hand, really has no plot other than "save Tony's stupid animal thing." Oh, and there are absolutely no roasted moths in this game. The only reason I remotely enjoyed this game is because it's a standard, old-school type of adventure game which I am a suckwhore for. It was not worth $20 though. Foul language!
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