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Overview

One of the game's cutscenes in the Director's Cut version, with a still from the movie re-drawn in an 8-bit aesthetic.
One of the game's cutscenes in the Director's Cut version, with a still from the movie re-drawn in an 8-bit aesthetic.

Manos: The Hands of Fate is a 2D indie horror deliberately-retro side-scrolling platformer developed and released digitally by FreakZone for iOS devices on July 26, 2012. It was later ported to the PC on December 14, 2012 and to Android devices on February 22, 2013.

Loosely based on the 1966 film of the same name (which would later become a cult classic due to its inclusion in the television series Mystery Science Theater 3000), Manos features an art, sound, and gameplay style reminiscent of side-scrolling platformers on the Nintendo Entertainment System.

The game is seen as a parody of loose platformer-oriented adaptations of film and novel licenses (such as Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde and Back to the Future II & III) and features numerous references to other B-movie films (such as The Screaming Skull, Robot Monster, and The Giant Claw).

Players control Michael, a husband and father who becomes lost with his family while driving on the back-roads near 1960's El Paso. After finding the mysterious Valley Lodge (run by the eccentric caretaker Torgo), Michael must fight numerous paranormal beings to rescue his family from a cult leader known as "The Master".

An enhanced port for the PC was released on Steam on July 30, 2015. Originally dubbed the "Director's Cut", this version features the addition of cutscenes, extra stages (including one based on Plan 9 From Outer Space), a "film grain" filter, and minor antagonist Torgo as an unlockable character for play. The game's style would also be used for The Angry Video Game Nerd Adventures.

Gameplay

One of the game's bosses: a statue from the movie.
One of the game's bosses: a statue from the movie.

The game casts the player in the role of Michael, who, armed with a pistol, must explore a series of stages with locations and figures pulled from the movie until the final confrontation with the Master. The player can extend Michael's life gauge by collecting crystal "Hands of Fate". If the player collects all of them, they receive an alternate (and anti-climactic) ending at the end of the game.

Players start with a pistol which will shoot a single bullet in a straight line. Shotguns can be picked up which will allow the player to shoot three bullets in a spread formation. Once the player has been hit, the shotgun will be lost and the weapon will go back to the pistol.

System Requirements

PC Minimum

  • Operating System: Windows XP or later
  • Processor: 200 Mhz Pentium processor or higher
  • Memory: 256 MB RAM
  • Hard Drive: 23 MB available space
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