Review: Back to the Future: Get Tannen!

February 18th, 2011 by | No comments

Episode 2 of the Back to the Future game has been released suddenly and it’s entitled ‘Get Tannen!’. The biggest complaint I had in my review of episode 1 was that it was too short and too easy, so I was interested to see if episode 2 would be better in these areas. Unfortunately, it isn’t. If anything, it’s actually worse. The episode feels shorter than the previous one and it’s also easier. I played through it in one sitting of around two hours. which is very quick when fans have been waiting two months for this episode. The first 30-45 minutes is one long cutscene where you occasionatly select a dialog option or click a few things, but it ultimately feels like you’re watching an animated movie instead of playing an adventure game. I love cutscenes, but this is too much.

The actual game takes place in the same year as the previous episode, but a few months later. There are some familiar characters and some new ones. While you run around a bit in the town square, most of the game takes place in Kid Tannen’s speakeasy and it’s over very quick. You can prolong the experience by selecting all dialog options when talking to people or looking at everything, but even that won’t add much extra time. The puzzles are emtremely easy and the number of inventory items you pick up is low combined with the obvious use for them. A certain puzzle is even used more than once and it was also used in the last episode.

The graphic and interface are the same as episode 1 so I won’t go over that although I will mention the odd animation of the Marty character. When he walks it sometimes looks like his legs are stiff as a board or like he is limping or like he has crapped his pants. When he runs his arms moves in a locked 90 degree angle like a Barbie doll. I don’t know what happened, I don’t remember these weird animations in the first episode. There are other minor bugs like Marty’s mouth moving without the dialog playing or Emmet appearing out of nowhere only to disappear again just as sudden, but they do not affect any of the puzzles.

Okay, that was some of the negative aspects of the episode. I got that out of my system. Let’s look at some of the more positive sides. I like the story although it is starting to get very complicated even for BttF. You can ask Doc to explain it, but that might make you more confused. Even though there are lots and lots of cutscenes I found them enjoyable as they unfolded the story. There is one short puzzle I enjoyed where you have to get through a door. I liked it because you actually had to think a little, more of that please. The game has a lot of action, which I found enjoyable. Finally, the voice acting is as good as the first time, if not better.

It’s even more obvious this time around that with these games Telltale is catering to a more casual crowd than the average adventurer. I doubt that will change in the remaining episodes and I fear the Jurassic Park games will follow the same path, but I hope other new games from Telltale will live up to the quality we saw in ‘Tales of Monkey Island’. The story, writing, and voice acting is what makes ‘Get Tannen!’ worth playing, not the weak and repeated puzzles.

My opinion about the first episode is even more true when it comes to the second episode: If you love Back to the Future you’ll like this game for the story, voice acting, and occasional throwbacks to the movies, but if you’re looking for a challenging adventure you should stay away.

Tags: , , ,
Posted in Reviews

Leave a Reply