TO THE CHRON-O-JOHNS
Day of the Tentacle Remastered
WHAT’S A TENTACLE? What’s left to say about
that hasn’t already been said in the decades that followed its 1993 release? Plenty, it turns out, as Double Fine Productions has given the remastered version of LucasArts’ wonderfully zany point-and-click classic more than just a visual facelift. Just to be clear, we’re not discounting the efforts that went into recreating the character animations and background assets, which thankfully retained the whimsical, cartoony approach of Peter Chan and Larry Ahern. In fact, we really appreciate the little details that were added into the game, an example being the content of Green Tentacle’s letter during the introduction sequence. Instead of the original’s squiggly lines, the letter becomes legible when switched over to the new remastered mode.
Speaking of new, you can now opt for either the traditional SCUMM verb bar, or a context-sensitive interaction 114 HWM | M AY 2 0 1 6 wheel that works like a charm on the DualShock 4 controller. Other little touches that we noticed – in addition to the 16:9 presentation – include the ability to highlight ‘clickable’ areas on the screen, and a remastered score that is fully in sync with the classic MIDI soundtrack – right down to the seamless iMUSE transitions. This complements well with the voiced dialog, which were dutifully cleaned up from the archival tapes to bring it in line with the redone visuals. That said, we do have some nitpicks with the 2016 remaster. LEAPING LABRATS! Having played both the floppy and ‘talkie’ versions of the original, there are some jarring differences in Day of the Tentacle Remaster that will be immediately apparent to longtime fans. For one, we experienced noticeable pauses in between lines of dialog, which affects the timing of the set-up and punchline of certain jokes. Some of the sound effects also seem to have lost their ‘oomph’ in the remastering process. And then there’s the issue with the mouseover text, which has an unsightly blue background that occupies too much of the screen. Like
the game is also a Cross-Buy and Cross-Save title for PS4 and PS Vita. While convenient, this introduces significant delay when saving and loading is in progress.
These issues probably won’t affect new players, and kudos to Double Fine for coming up with a workaround to make Maniac Mansion playable on Weird Ed’s computer – just like in the original. Also worthy of praise is the PS Vita version, which runs surprisingly well, barring some longer load times. Seasoned players will get a good chuckle out of the trophies from the game, as well as the commentary track featuring Tim Schafer, Dave Grossman, Peter McConnell, Clint Bajakian, as well as original artists Chan and Ahern. by TESTED & RATED
TAKE ON THE WORLD!!!