Full Throttle

Full Throttle

released on Apr 30, 1995

Full Throttle

released on Apr 30, 1995

Full Throttle is a computer adventure game developed and published by LucasArts. It was designed by Tim Schafer, who would later go on to design Grim Fandango, Psychonauts and Brütal Legend. The game features voice actors Roy Conrad and Mark Hamill. It was released on April 30, 1995. It is the tenth game to use the SCUMM adventure game engine.

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Old school Point n click adventure, felt like it got a little long in the tooth, but I also played it in the current day so that probably isn't helping. Had a good time with this one though, not too many complaints for what it was.

starts off really charming but i found it pretty tedious towards the back end of the game, i really do like the art design and something tells me that i would be super into point and click adventure games, but this one was just fine

During this period of time, I'm starting to see Tim Schafer as one of the many ambitious names that wanted to bring a more cinematic quality to the gaming medium. Point 'n clicks don't just have to be wacky and funny, they can tell a more proper story, something akin to a movie. I think it's here where Tim was really starting to push the company he was working under to prioritize these sorts of titles.

With that said, I can't really lie, this one's doing absolutely nothing for me. Maybe my disinterest in Mad Max-like settings was already the first sign that I should've stayed away, but even with the prospect of getting to watch some cool bike battles, and enjoy the aesthetic of those old 90's PC games, I've found the execution of everything here so drab, sluggish, and confusing (in the spirit of point 'n clicks of that time), that I don't think this would've hit even if I was a Mad Max fan.

The biggest complaint I can voice is the one that I've already done so in the past, which would be the LucasArts voice direction curse. In the case of Maniac Mansion, the problem with the voice direction there, was that it didn't match the crazed cartoony visuals. In the case of Full Throttle, the voice direction doesn't match the all-star cast. LucasArts must have presumably spent a ton of money to hire people like Mark Hamill, or Kath Soucie. Yet they pretty much never get an opportunity here to really flex their acting chops. No shouting, no major emotional range, so why bother hiring them at all?

The only reason I can think of is because star power makes your game look more appealing to purchase. But if I saw a poster for a big blockbuster movie with a cast of people I'm crazy for, and found out they all sound like they just got out of bed, I dunno, I'd be feeling a little bit ripped off, or in the very least, like an opportunity was squandered. LucasArts brought a bunch of big names to this video game, that's fine, but what do the big names bring to it?

As for everything else, I wanna say that there's some creative things in here, and I mean, you've got a couple hours, a guide if you're stuck, and you can clear this game, easy. It's short enough that you wouldn't really be able to waste your life playing it anyway, and it's always possible that you'll like it way more than what my shoddy little review here is saying. But for me, voice acting and voice delivery is everything in this sort of point 'n click. If it's not doing enough, then the rest of my engagement in every other aspect of the game falls apart. My engagement to solve the next obtuse puzzle, or deal with that really repetitive bike combat minigame, has to be reinforced by rewarding me with the next big joke, or the next big overall moment. And it's trying, it's definitely trying to hit me with these things, but the energy and the punch just isn't there.

incredibly charming short point and click from tim schafer. while lacking in a lot of the narrative weight i'd maybe want in something like this, it more than makes up for it with it's dry humour, fun characters, and interesting world.

at first seeming like a stylized version of our own world the game starts to reveal itself as a kind of mad max meets blade runner desert cyberpunk, though keeps itself fairly light with it's overall world building. pretty much everything that can be surmised from the game is taken from it's art direction, incredibly detail rich interiors mixed with sprawling desert exteriors gives the game this really unique vibe, which is complemented by just stunning pixel art drawing from classic cartoons and animated beautifully for the characters. i also REALLY love this early 3d stuff the game has going on with some of it's backgrounds, vehicle designs, and driving sections, a mix of plastic and chrome looking textures bitcrunched to hell it just looks amazing to me. full disclosure that i was playing the remastered version of the game using the original graphics but i switched over to the new renders a few times to help me find some of the clickable areas and it is just so clear that this game is meant to be played with that original pixel art. i'm sure a lot of time went into making it look good but those new renders just feel kinda lifeless, at times even looking like when you use one of those emulator filters to smooth out pixel art algorithmically and it all just looks wrong. though it is a bit of a shame to miss out on the remastered audio and some of the quality of life improvements this way.

narratively it keeps itself pretty light, doing a pretty standard corporate corruption plot involving secretive murders, inheritance theft, and an evil ceo hell bent on destroying the biking industry with minivan manufacture. it never lets itself get too bogged down in the details, just moving from setpiece to setpiece, and while i feel that it's lacking a bit more of an emotional punch that i would want it's handily brought together by a superb cast of characters. each time a person or a gang is introduced they feel wholly unique and lived in, which is in no small part because of how well they are all brought to life by their voice actors. mark hamill plays about a dozen parts here and they're all done super well, roy conrad is perfect in the lead as the stoic and wry biker ben, and as a huge simpsons fan i was really pleased to hear tress macneille show up in a bit part near the end. just found myself very charmed the whole time and i got through it in about three and a half hours all told so the game never outstayed it's welcome.

the puzzles for the most part are much more straightforward than one might come to expect from a lucasarts point 'n' click from the mid-90s, most everything had a fairly logical conclusion and the only ones that really stumped me were when i just accidentally forgot to pick something up since it blended into the background and i had to do some backtracking. i think the only gameplay element here that really drags down full throttle are the action setpieces. the mine road section is fairly mind numbing more than anything else, unresponsive controls and lengthy loops until you finally have all the items you need, but not really ever especially difficult. what really doesn't work is the destruction derby sequence, with controls so unresponsive and finicky i messed around with it for about ten minutes without really getting anywhere before just skipping it altogether (a new feature in the remastered port).

overall though, a short but ultimately fulfilling experience, just puts a smile on my face.

So as a sucker for Lucas Arts point and click adventure games (and just the genre in general) I was the target audience for this game, and while this isn't my favorite of these that have I played, I still had a great time with it.

It's shockingly a lot more down to earth then I was expecting from some of the others. It had good character work, good voice acting, and gorgeous animations (even in the old style which I fliped too often here). What's here is really fun and as solid time.

I think my biggest complaint is just how short this game is. It really is SHORT, especially if you're good at these sorts of games and know what you're doing, and it feels like it could have used at least a couple more hours of story here.

But for a short little jaunt you can do far worse.

Long live the bunnies.

Just to reiterate... I'm not putting my lips on that.