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And so, on to the fourth episode of Tales do we go, with the series progressing nicely. The end is nearing though and Telltale should now, surely, have begun to move on from merely being good to reminding us why we all loved the Monkey Island games in the first place. Whether they manage this is open to debate, sadly.
First of all, progress is still being made and, essentially, Episode 4 (we’re not typing out that blasted title again) is better than Lair of the Leviathan. The puzzles are more challenging, yet manage to stay pleasingly un-mind-boggling. While you might need a tiny shove every so often from the optional hint-system, the puzzles have thankfully moved on from the jungles of the first (and second) episode.
So, while the level of quality is still rising, we’re not sure it was necessary to have us back at Flotsam Island, running around the jungle (not so annoyingly this time) and strolling down that same street, meeting the same characters again. It’s not too bad, though. There are a few new locations, such as the courthouse and the inside of Club 41, but the reuse of characters (and character models) is yet again glaringly apparent.
Maybe we’re being too harsh. In terms of advancing the plot of a series, and bringing in some interesting twists, this episode really does work well. We’re still hung up on the fact that the same single character dominates the two new locations you’re initially presented with. Couldn’t they have come up with a different one for each? Or is this what we’re going to be cursed with in any and all episodic games in the future?
Still, you’ll have a great time playing them, so The Trial etc. still gets a hearty recommendation. All eyes on the last episode to see if Telltale can pull things off in style.
Nov 11, 2009