Like the other Sam and Max episodes, Episode Three comes packed with ribald humor, one drawling dog and one violence happy rabbit - freelance police on a mission
Back for a third helping Sam and Max Episode Three: The Mole, The Mob and the Meatball - has made its debut launch. Like the other Sam and Max episodes that have been released from Telltale games, Episode Three comes packed with ribald humor, one drawling dog and one violence happy rabbit - freelance police on a mission. This time they run into a mob of teddy bear headed mobsters and further the over arcing mystery of strange hypnosis being used on the good people of the city for an unknown purpose.
Rabbits don’t land on their feet, they bounce
Secret passwords and disturbing bear heads
Our story starts with a cut scene where Sam is tossing Max into the air so that he can throw cards into the garbage can. A fun game if you can get someone to toss you. However, the game is interrupted as a call comes informing our favorite freelance police duo that they’ve work to do. It seems the toy mafia is in town and the mole the commissioner sent under ground hasn’t surfaced which is a reason for concern. Sam and Max are, therefore, assigned to get in to the not so mob free Ted E Bear’s Casino and find the mole. Without delay, though you can pause to watch the video that will review what happened in the last two games, our heroes are off to the scene to search for the mole.
In this third installment the story continues to be a lot of fun to explore, dealing with mobster clichés and learning how to swindle a cheater out of his ill gotten gains. My one complaint is that the vast majority of the action happens in the same locations that we’ve seen before in the first two episodes. The office, the street, the inconvenience store and Sybil’s shop don’t change overly much and in these places you can see areas where dialogue is being reused from game to game. This isn’t a huge problem, and it’s easily understandable why Telltale would want to reuse a bit of what they’ve created previously. Particularly in the episodic format it’s expected that some scenery is going to be used more than once. What’s a Star Trek episode without ever being on the bridge?
Just a replacement fish? Say it isn’t so!
Leonard Steakcharmer, cheat and Mama’s boy
The biggest drawback of the familiar is that the game exploration and play is shorter than both of its predecessors as it doesn’t take rocket science to figure out where to go in order to acquire what bits that are necessary for success. That said it’s still amusing to see what kind of shop Sybil is running at a given moment and Bosco’s latest disguise or gadget, this time a listening device that is literally a bug. M should be taking lessons from our paranoid shopkeeper.
Graphically this game continues to excel in its own realm. The animation for the various characters works smoothly and each fits into the scene where they’re meant to be. The giant demented bear heads are a nice touch, though they have a certain horrific factor about them as well. Very occasionally the mouth movements will get slightly out of synch with the sound, but if you think about a Godzilla movie you can get past it.
The voice acting and background sounds and music also continue to delight in this episode. Yeah, I found places where the music was being reused, but this didn’t really bother me overly much. The light Jazz is appropriate to the setting and never broke me out of the mood of the game, which is the point of background music anyway.
One listening ‘bug’ coming up. Where does Bosco find these things?
Taking orders from a giant pink bear head is a bit on the strange side. Even for Sam and Max
In the end this middle episode, third of six, is satisfying if a bit on the short side. I’m looking forward to finding out more about the mysterious ‘Plan B’ and how the various incidents of hypnotism are all related. In three more episodes maybe we’ll find out. I know I’m willing to follow the game through and see how it all ends.
Top Game Moment:
TOP GAME MOMENT
I’m torn between the Whack A Rat game and the Desoto car chase scene. Both are a great opportunity to shoot something just because it’s there.