I haven't done a blog in a while and I just finished the Sam and Max Season 3 series so I decided to do a quick review of the series as a whole.
Going into this the only game from the series I had played was Abe Licoln must Die for free off steam, so I missed some of the references to previous episodes such as Sybil Marrying Abraham Lincoln, C.O.P.S. and some other scenes. However this did not make the experience any less enjoyable since there are many Pop Culture references, in the frist minute Max references planet of the apes and a few minutes later Sam quotes Tony Montana from Scarface. There are plenty of quotes and imagery like this throught every episode that make for some pretty funny moments.
Sam and Max as most know is in an episodic format, unlike the last 2 seasons where there is a different storyline for each episode with an overarching storyline that ties it all together this season has one solid storyline with different events all following the Dog and Rabbit duo. This time around Sam and Max are in possession of one of several artifacts called the toys of power, these items grant the user some awesome powers (e.g. see into the future, transform into a 3 dimentional object from any picture, ect.), as you can no doubt guess many people want these items for their own gain. The first episode begins with Sam and Max imprisoned on the Flag ship of Intergalaxy War Criminal General Skun'Ka'Pe (or Skunk Ape to the freelance police) and after escaping they find out it was all a vision of the future created by a pair of glasses Max found (one of the toys of power), directly afterward the same Flagship lands and the Skunk Ape steps out. After some puzzles and tracking down another Toy of Power they are captured in the scene from the begining of the game but eventually trap the Gorilla inside the Penal Zone (many sexual oriented references are made about this) and the world seems safe, but in the course of capturing the Ape they discover a pair of skeletons baring a striking resembalance to the two along with a Projector and 4 films, setting into motion the events of the second episode. THe second Episode takes the form of an adventure Serial as the grand Parents of Sam and Max discover the Devils Toy box (chest containign the toys of power) for the first time, the game takes a non linear approach, there are 4 film reels that all play out in one story but you can jump to whatever one you wish and items and infomation you learn from other stages are kept to be used in any other part of the game. To avoid spoilers I will put the rest in spoiler brackets [spoiler] At the end of Epsiode 2 the Grand Parents defeat an evil Necromancer who wants to summon a Cthulhu like god to this dimension before being hit by accident with a spell, the film ends and during a quick outing by Sam we find that Max's brain is stolen, Sam will stop at nothing to get it back. This episode begins in a Film Noir sense with Sam constanly reminissing about things he learned. You later find that Skunk Ape and The Necromancer are fighting for control of the Devils Toy Box, to get help Sam puts the brain of a dead Pharoh inside Max's body and This Pharoh can use the toys in the same way Max can. After recovering Max the Pharoh uses the toys to take over the world in an alternate reality. After resetting the order of the world Sam and Max are attacked by Clones of Sam, setting in motion episode 4. The next Two epsidoes have some major plot points and I seriously recommend playign the series to find these out for yourself. [/spoiler]
The Gameplay focusses less on item collecting and more on using the toys of power to complete puzzles, these puzzles can be simple or complex to make the game feel varied. There are many Toys of Power that are found through the game, such as the two mentioned above, aswell as a Ventriliquist doll that can project your voice into anything, a phone that lets you jump to any phone number and Mind reading Cards. These can all be used in conjuntion with several environmental factors to solve the many challenges the pair will face on their trip. Each episode ahs some different gameplay elements wheather it be a completly new feature or another toy of power.
Visually the game is nothing revolutionary but characters look the way they should, that's all that really matters.
In all, Season 3 is a fun filled, action packed and hillarious ride, the characters are interesting, the plot is well writen and the finale almost brought a tear to my eye. The only problem with the game is that each episode is really short if you fly through it, around 3 hours long. I seriously recommend this game to anyone that likes adventure games.