Without knowing how or why, Brian, a student on the verge of graduating from college, is attacked by Mafia gangsters.
During his desperate getaway, in the company of a mysterious striptease dancer, he ends up meeting a wide range of unusual characters. But which ones are trying to help him and which ones are planning to blow his head off?
You will have to be very ingenious to figure it out, without forgetting that nobody is who they seem in this explosive mixture of murder, money, ambition, santería rituals and deception... a whole lot of deception.
Age requirements: ESRB Rating: TEEN with Use of Drugs, Mild Violence. PEGI Rating: 12+ with Bad Language.
Minimum system requirements: Windows XP or Windows Vista, 1 GHz Processor (1.4 GHz recommended), 256MB RAM (512 recommended), 3D graphics card compatible with DirectX 7 (compatible with DirectX 9 recommended), Mouse, Keyboard.
Posted on 2009-02-18 14:09:56 by chad:
This is a solid point-and-click adventure game, through and through, but it will not appeal to everyone. It seems the developers knew this -- there is a "disclaimer" in the manual that not only acknowledges this, but also invites gamers with a passion for these archaically-styled games to simply enjoy. I felt this was remarkably humble, and it makes the inherentread more flaws of the genre seem a little less glaring when you factor in the earnest dedication this small group of people have for the adventure genre. Nevertheless, it not only delivers classic adventure gameplay the developers promised, but also brings with it some problems.
The graphics and character designs are remarkable. The style of 2D backgrounds with fully-rendered 3D characters looks beautiful. The colors really pop out, give plenty of contrast, and are duly cinematic. The stylized character designs are really inspired; the drag queens are the most memorable characters here, but the main protagonist is a bit plain. The animation is mostly smooth, but the dialogue scenes have incredibly jerky mouth animation, and it is quite distracting. However, all this wouldn't matter much if it wasn't fun to play.
The interface is clean, simple, and elegant. You can do everything with two buttons -- it's the ideal input affordance for this genre. The puzzles are mostly inventory-based, and the character can carry an unlimited number of items. There is one major flaw that bothered me with 'Runaway,' and it is the writing. The puzzles mostly work, but some solutions require utterly nonsensical solutions that the sub-par translation did not quite fix. For instance, the writing comes across as if it is telling you straight fact rather than hinting. Then, when you get the solution, the player character says exactly what you just figured out in your head, and it adds nothing to the mystery. You feel the main character is always one step behind, instead of the other way around. It's too obvious when it doesn't need to be, and too plain when it needs to be guiding.
The puzzles mostly work, but the strict in-game logic sometimes hampers the game flow. For instance, you cannot pick up any item you see if you want it. You have to activate the item either by looking at it, or by talking to someone about that item. Example: you cannot pry open a barrel with a crowbar unless you first look at the barrel to see if one can be opened, then you must establish motivation for opening the barrel in the first place. It's frustrating at times, but it does make sense logically. Would you pick up every item in a grocery store if you were only wanting to make a club sandwich? No - only the required ingredients will do. Most other adventure games let you pick stuff up whether you need it yet or not, however, and 'Runaway' needs a lot of clearance before the user can progress.
Even though 'Runaway' has some commonplace genre flaws, the game remains a very solid adventure that does everything it's supposed to: give interesting characters, locales, and some clever puzzles that require a few less-than-ordinary solutions. It may be a bit short, but few games in this genre aren't. Adventure gamers do deserve to try it out, and most will end up liking it, if only for the stylish updating of a classic game style. Casual fans should start elsewhere. Don't forget about 'Runaway.' It's part of a dying breed, for better or worse, and it does the job.
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Posted on 2009-02-17 21:18:12 by xa_chan:
Runaway is definitely an excellent game. With a good (if not truly original) story and well-defined characters, it will rock your neurons old-style, because the enigmas are generally quite difficult. But difficult doesn't mean illogical and most of the time, you'll find the solution by yourself. If not, it means that you haven't collected every item that could be useful!
Mayberead more not as "crazy" as Lucasarts point'n'clikcs (Day of the Tentacle, Monkey Island, Sam&Max), Runaway is still stuffed with humour and fun. You'll certainly have a good time with the different characters you'll encounter in game, especially when some will definitely remind you of some well-known movies. Let's say, for example, the people in the bus... ^_^
The interface is classical yet flawless. No worries about that. Point'n'click at its most efficient!
To sum up, Runaway is exactly the kind of game you will love if you are desperately waiting for the Lucasarts games to be available on GOG (one can dream, right?). It's also the kind of game you'll love if you like old-fashioned games stuffed with puzzles and good dialogues. And if you never tried any point'n'click in your gamer life, well, it's not too late!
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Posted on 2009-02-19 19:16:22 by CTLance:
Let me preface my impressions with the following: This game suffers from a very noticeable unevenness in quality and production values. This is a very real flaw that might be offputting to some. Depending on your ability to stomach this issue this game is either a yummy snack or a rusty can of dogfood. This is nothing that can be described by a score or review, this is really somethingread more that depends on your gaming personality.
At times the voice actors and 2D/3D graphics are doing their jobs admirably, everything meshes together really nicely. It's impressive how this game can look at times. At other times you'll stumble over obvious errors in the spoken dialogue/subtitles, shoddy voiceacting and cringeworthy character art, mixed with very unnatural animation. Maybe the devs run out of money? I don't know. One thing's for sure though: one gets the feeling that this was localized from a foreign language on a shoestring budget, leading to some lost depth and introducing some flaws in the process.
If you can see past that issue you'll be treated to a charming game that point & click adventure fans will undoubtedly enjoy. It's probably more to the beginner side of things, since there are only two possible actions besides movement, namely looking at and manipulating things. Plus, your inventory always stays manageable and gets cleared out from time to time. You can probably play through this in one sitting on a weekend if you're a battlehardened pro, but IMHO that doesn't detract from its value. Any longer and the story would have started to fall apart. The way it is, it's a nice. bite-sized adventure, perfectly fine for a relaxing bout of point&click goodness.
After all is said and done I'm pretty happy with both presentatioon and gameplay though. The puzzles are sufficiently obscure, yet somewhat logical, the story is pretty involving, the graphics are OK at worst, and the length of the whole game is just right. It sets out to tell a little roadmovie-like story, and it succeeds well at that. Don't expect anything overly fancy, this is not a genre-redefining blockbuster with a huge budget. This is a slightly flawed, rather simplicistic game with a certain charm that'll keep you coming back if you accept it for what it is.
Again, I certainly don't regret spending my money on this, but YMMV - be aware that this game is far from perfect. This really needs to be stressed. This game is rock stable and gameplay-wise quite competent (if simplicistic in comparison to the heavy hitters), but it suffers from an uneven presentation more than anything else. It's slightly above average due to that inconsistent gameplay experience IMHO.
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