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Maniac Mansion: Day of the Tentacle (DOS)

94
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100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
4.2
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Tomer Gabel (4374)
Written on  :  Aug 29, 2000
Platform  :  DOS
Rating  :  5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars

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Summary

The funniest computer game ever, and one hell of a game!

The Good

Day of the Tentacle is unique. There has never been anything quite like it, nor will there ever be - nothing can come close. Day of the Tentacle has a reserved place among classic, immortal games like Loom: it is ageless. I will never tire of playing it. It is simply the funniest adventure game I've ever encountered, and my limited English vocabulary doesn't include enough words to properly describe Day of the Tentacle's glory... but I'll give it my best shot.

So what makes The Day of the Tentacle one of the best adventure games ever written?

  • It is hilarious. The best yet implementation of a story in an adventure game. It plays more like a classic Warner Bros. cartoon: everything makes sense in a twisted, preverted kind of way. The twisted logic you have to use to acheive your goals just makes the game that much better. Sticking a hamster in a microwave!
  • Day of the Tentacle features some of the best graphics and animation in a computer game to date, very similar in style to Warner Bros.' Road Runner: while everything looks "kind of" realistic, it all looks twisted: the house is built all wrong, the river doesn't curl but rather break, the rooms are impossibly big and oddly built. Just take a look at these screenshots - see how outright ludicrous the in-game graphics are, and just how well they're drawn!
    As for animations, they are equally ridiculous and add just as much to the atmosphere of the game. The game has the feel of a bizarre cartoon (again, look at the screenshots: the picture of the Edisons screaming in tandem).
  • The interface is the best ever, even better than the wonderful Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis and far beyond anything Sierra ever accomplished. It is easy to use and makes perfect sense, and the keyboard shortcuts (along with the mouse rightclick) makes things even easier.
  • Outright terrific music: the best heard in any adventure game to date. The spectacular MIDI soundtrack sounds as ridiculous as the plot it accompanies, and the terrific tracks are best experienced with a wavetable-enabled MIDI card (being that it's a DOS game, I would recommend the easy to obtain AWE32), but is extremely good even with a standard AdLib-compatible FM card.
    The sound effects are equally terrific, and add a great deal to the game's cartoon-like atmosphere: thinks sound just as you would expect them to in Animaniacs. Spectacular execution.
  • The best voice acting ever heard in a game. It couldn't have been better. I wouldn't want them to try and improve it. It's perfect.
  • Best ending in an adventure game, ever!
  • And last, but not least, the addition of the original Maniac Mansion in the CD-ROM version. A very nice touch indeed!

The Bad

It ends. :-(

The Bottom Line

I don't envy anyone who has never experienced the fantastic Day of the Tentacle. Get it, no matter how. Play it. Enjoy it. Love it. Get hooked. Sell your house and go to live in a cave with the CD and your laptop.