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Sam & Max Hit the Road (Windows)

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4.1
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Written by  :  MasterMegid (897)
Written on  :  Apr 13, 2009
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars

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Summary

The Adventures Of A Shamus Canine And Hyperactive Rabbity Thing

The Good

Released in 1993, “Sam and Max: Hit The Road”, is a pinnacle of the adventure game genre. Based on Steve Purcell’s irreverent cult comic book, about two wacky private dicks. It is with great trepidation, that I review this game. I mean how can I judge this game, that is beyond reproach? Can the unwashed touch the golden?

Then I think, get over it asshole! It’s just a review. So without more puzzlement, here is my review for Sam and Max: Hit The Road.

The freelance police’s current case is a complex one. Then again you don’t call of these two knuckle heads unless it’s a tough case, or no one else is crazy enough to take it. It would seem that the Bigfoot attraction of the local carnival has gone missing. And now Sam (a shamus canine) and Max (a hyperactive rabbity-thing) must take to the open roads of the USA, and solve the case. And rack up as much collateral damage as they can.

Along the way they will visit tourist traps untold. Encounter strange people, and stranger situations. See the worlds largest ball of twine! Thrill to the heights of Mt. Rushmore, as you bungee-jump out of Teddy Roosevelt’s nose! Stop in at one of the millions of identical Stuckey’s restaurants.

You will also have to solve many puzzles along the way. Some quite difficult. The Mystery Vortex comes to mind. If you are a purest or nut like me and refuse to use any guides you will have quite a hard time of it.

The graphics in Sam and Max, are pretty good. And still hold up quite well today. Running on a modified SCUMM engine. It must work well as many indie adventure games still use it today.

The animation is easily Saturday morning cartoon quality. Probably better as I seem to recall some cartoon shows from my youth that look like crap compared to this. The animated cut scenes in particular.

The voice overs are great. As a matter of fact, now when I go back and read Sam ad Max comics, I hear them speaking in the voices from this game. Of course that maybe because I am insane. But I have looked into that, and it does not seem likely. The supporting cast is good as well. I particularly enjoyed the Bigfoot that sounded like Jimmy Stewart.

The music and sound effects sound great as well. And are always fit the situations. I don’t know how else to describe it so I will stop there, I think.

The controls are so simple and easy, anyone should be able to do it. The game uses the mouse and a simple two click control scheme, it’s very simple, and effective. There are a few keyboard commands for saving your game and what not.

There are also a ton of mini-games to play. And unlike most games, that feature mini-games, the ones in Sam And Max, are actually fun to play! Imagine that! There is Wak-A-Rat, and Sam and Max’s version of the old board game, Battleship, Car bomb to name just a few.

The Bad

I am tempted to leave this area blank but that would not be entirely true.

Well some bits seem unbalanced in terms of difficulty. As many of the earlier bits are very easy, but the latter stages of the game the puzzles get more obtuse.

The game is very short. Of course this is not uncommon, to the adventure game genre. I guess very few people want to play a 50 hr. Adventure game. Go figure. At least there is high replay value.

The Bottom Line

Sam and Max: Hit The Road, is the pinnacle of adventure games. If you are a fan of the genre you have to play it. Is it any wonder that the genre began to disappear after Sam and Max was released? No one else could top it. And the only other games that come close are other Lucasarts games, such as Grim Fandango. If you like adventure games, funny ones in particular, you owe it to yourself and humanity to play this game.