Sam & Max Hit the Road

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a game by Telltale, Inc
Platform: PC (2007)
User Rating: 8.7/10 - 3 votes
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See also: Text Adventure, Episodic Games, Games Like Far Cry 5, Sam & Max Series

Sam and max hit thh road centres around the exploits of Freelance Police: Sam, the wisecracking dog, and his sociopathic rabbit chum, Max. The unlikely pair embark on a jaunt around the crappy tourist traps of America in pursuit of Bruno the Bigfoot and Trixie the Giraffe-Necked Girl: escapees from a carnival freak show.

It features the latest incarnation of LucasArts' graphic-adventure interface, with old-fashioned verbs replaced by icons selected by clicking the right-hand mouse button. So instead of forming sentences to direct the characters to perform whatever bizarre or unsavoury act is required, you simply click on an orange, put it in the politician's mouth and away you go. (Or away he goes, anyway.) All this is identical to the disk-based version, of course, so you'll just be gagging to know what extras the cd version has.

It speaks

Yep, it speaks. This time all the way through, in the same 1950s B-movie voices used in the disk-version intro sequence. It's been superbly done, too. Every single voice is excellent for the part - either because it's spot on and just as you'd imagine it for the character, or because it's deliberately inappropriate for comic effect. For example, the fisherman in one of the attractions who looks like Woody Allen, now talks like him, too.

In case you're worried that you might miss a vital clue if you can't read the text yourself or are such an old hippie that you can't quite cope with the idea of an adventure with no writing, you can still have the text switched on if you really must. But it isn't necessary. The characters' voices arc so well done that you won't miss it at all.

It tells jokes

Apart from the addition of voices, it plays exactly the same way as the original: in terms of plot, what's said, puzzles and graphics, it's identical to the disk version in every respect. Which still means, basically, entertainment all the way. The game's main selling point is its humour, which captures that of Steve Purcell's comics perfectly. And, unlike LucasArts' previous feeble attempt at humour (Day Of The Tentacle) the game manages to be both tricky and genuinely funny.

It sings and dances

There are controls to balance the volume of the speech, music and sound effects - and some of the music is pretty groovy stuff, too. As for the speed of play, while you couldn't say the individual scenes load with dazzling quickness, once you're in, the dialogue flows smoothly and swiftly and, as you progress through the various dialogue icons that control the interaction, it even gets pretty close to sounding like proper conversation. Nearer than we manage around here, anyway.

It's not the first game to take the spoken dialogue approach, but it's the only one that will get people elsewhere in the room laughing at the script. As far as owners of the original game go, it doesn't have anything in the gameplay to warrant buying it a second time. But for cd-rom owners who don't have the disk version, it's the ultimate Sam and Max experience.

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System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

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