supermooseman's Sam & Max Hit the Road (PC) review

Bursting with witty humour, clever characters and plot.

Sam (a shamus canine) and Max (a hyperkinetic rabbity thing) are Freelance Police and are based on the comics created by Steve Purcell. Hit the Road is their toughest case yet as they have been hired to find an escaped Bigfoot from a carnival. You then control Sam and Max as they work their way around locations to find and solve clues to what's happened to Bruno, the escaped Bigfoot.

The game interface is a simple one to get the hang of. You click on things to interact with them, but what you do with the objects depends on what action you've selected (look, use, and so on) which you can select by right clicking your mouse to scroll through the options. It is however more easier simply to press the key on the keyboard that corresponds to the action, which will be the first letter of each action. This is a quick and easy way to do things and is easy for people new to adventure games to grasp.

The puzzles in the game are hard, and some of them will have you trying to figure out for a while. This game will especially be hard for new adventure game players, because as the veterans know, you must check out every possible object and see if you can pick it up encase it comes in handy later on in the game and you must talk to every character to get as much information as possible. Some of the puzzles will get you frustrated if you aren't sure where you're meant to be heading (the Tunnel of Love for example), but once you've solved the puzzles you're stuck on, it does sort of make sense.

Graphically the game isn't exactly a stunner in this day and age, but that doesn't mean this game isn't good looking. As long as you can go into this game not expecting highly detailed graphics and just appreciate the game for the fact it looked superb 'back in the day' The environments are also well designed, such as Bumpusville and the baffling, but brilliant, Mystery Vortex (one room will have you standing on your head!). The game is bursting with witty humour and hilarious comments from Max and dry sarcasm from Sam. There are also some nice 'hidden' jokes such as putting money down the well and making the game supposedly end, and making Sam pick up something that just can't be picked up. The humour is also helped tremendously by the voice acting, which is great for all characters, not just the Freelance Police.

Throughout the game you can also pick up items which are actually mini-games. There is a battleships type game, but with cars, there is a game where you can dress up Sam & Max and there is a game which sees you smacking rats when they pop out the holes. Although not exactly an amazing feature, it is a nice distraction from the main game.

Sam & Max Hit the Road doesn't really have any downsides at all, unless you just want easy puzzles that you can zoom through and complete the game as quickly as possible. A tiny downside was that if you play with the text on, it is hard to get the speed of the text to go along with the characters, as it'll either go ever so slightly slower, or slightly faster, but this is only when a character is talking for a long time without another character jumping in (which is rare).

LucasArts have really made a classic game and sets high standards for all adventure games. The characters, story, humour... everything is really great and it'll just want you to play it again and again to make sure you haven't missed anything out such as any dialogue or jokes. No adventurer gamer is complete without this game on their shelf.
2 Comments Refresh
Posted by dogbox

I wish I could play this game. ): Come on re-release!

Posted by Daryl

Why don't cha buy it off Amazon and play it using ScummVM?

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