By Kurt Thingvold
Well it’s been seventeen years since we last saw or heard from our good friend Larry Laffer. If your not familiar with him..well let me tell you! Leisure Suit Larry was an adventure game made by sierra online entertainment back in 1987, by designer Al Lowe. It featured lovable loser Larry Laffer a door to door flight simulator salesman, looking to get lucky in Lost Wages. Through out the years Larry has starred in seven games, and one casino game. You may remember a few years ago there were two other Larry games in name only. Magna Cum Laude and Box Office Bust. Both have been decanonized and set on fire. Last year replay games started a KickStarter campaign to raise funds to re-make the first Larry game. The campaign was extremely Successful, and here it is Leisure Suit Larry:Reloaded
I remember very clearly my first Larry game. It was Leisure Suit Larry 7: Love For Sail. I was blown away. Women, bouncing breasts and so much innuendo my little brain couldn’t take it. 14 years later here I am diving into a franchise that made me and adventure gamer and bringing Larry back to his roots as one Sierra’s best selling graphical adventure games. Now for those of you who have never heard of Leisure Suit Larry it’s a graphical point and click adventure game. You use the mouse to select various actions to use with the environment. Also collecting items to solve puzzles. So sit back, slip into your leisure suit and lets get this review under way.
The game starts out in front of Lefty’s Bar: one of the most iconic bars in gaming history. The narrator explains the situation of the game, now Larry must find love in lost wages. The plot of the game is pretty self explanatory take dork, get dork laid. That’s pretty much the story of every Leisure Larry game. While the story is pretty basic. The dialogue and timing of Larry and The Narrator is some of the funniest stuff I’ve heard in Larry game.
What impresses me the most is the way Replay kept the action bar the same as it was in the VGA version of Leisure Suit Larry: In the land of the lounge lizard. It makes the game much easier to navigate and solving some of the puzzles. However there is another method the action wheel: Where you hover the cursor over an object you want to Interact with such as a pretty lady. You hold down the left mouse button, and use the select the action you wish to use. The controls are fairly simple; look, touch,taste and undress. If you want to get more information about an item you look at it, if you want to pick it up or maybe do something to it you would touch it. Some puzzles require you to do multiple actions. Looking at an object, picking it up and using it on another object.
Having played the original Leisure Suit Lary game, and the VGA remake countless times over the years. I thought this rendition was going to be a breeze to blow through. As it is with some game remakes there tends to be a few extra sidequests here and there while a majority of the game stays the same; Maybe with updated graphics,musical score, and controls. While most of this is true with Reloaded. They also extended the game by adding new puzzles and switching them up. So what you would to complete a puzzle in the original, there is a completely different way to do it now. What I thought would be a breeze through the game, Writing the review. “Yep this is a remake! It’s prettier!” I was finding new ways to complete old puzzles and racking my brain on how it needs to be done.
Another impressive feat is the graphical detail. The backgrounds and the environments are amazing. The art style is cartoony with a hint of realism and it works within the world. It shows again replay really took pride in bringing Lost Wages to life in the Larry-verse. One thing though that kind of feels out of place are some of the characters animations. While nothing too big, it seems out of place. Some animation is smooth, while other times it seems blocky. It is common for games to have this but it also seems like a bit of a disappointment too. Larry is known for it’s outlandish puzzle and situations and some of the animation: While not killing it. Doesn’t bring the full effect of said situation. Another problem that I have are with the female models for the game. Now wait..wait..wait. I know a Larry game has to have beautiful woman, that’s the rule! The game does have beautiful woman when you get to the close ups. However the models before you interact with them are boring and look the same; with the exception of a little outfit and hair swap. Now, normally I wouldn’t complain about it but it seems some of the backers that are present throughout the game have better details than the females Larry is trying to impress. While the backers are important I wish some of the iconic females of the series received some of the same treatment.
The last thing I really want to point out that was a little disappointing was the narrator. While him and Larry do have some funny moments together. A lot of the narrators dialogue on his own is very dry and somewhat boring and at times. I skipped through his dialogue just to hear what Larry had to say.
Leisure suit Larry: Reloaded. Is what I consider to be a good remake it took the original concept and improved upon some of the flaws of the original. While adding a little something extra to make it stand out. While there were a few bumps along the way the game is fun and well worth the twenty dollars. Replay games seems to really know the franchise and it seems Larry is back in good hands. I can’t wait to see what they do with the character in the future. Hopefully we can get Larry 8!