Full Throttle Remastered Review – Straight from 1995
Platforms: PC (reviewed), PS4, PS Vita
Developer: Double Fine
Publisher: Double Fine
Release: 18th April 2017
Review Key provided by Double Fine
Full Throttle, originally released in 1995 by Lucasarts games, was the first Point´n Click Adventure with Tim Schafer in the Lead role. Quickly it made itself a name among gamers worldwide with its iconic style and setting. More than 20 years later Double Fine releases a completly remastered version of their founders first game. Can it still hold its ground against modern Adventure games?
Ben was just enjoying his time with his gang the Polecats, in a bar somewhere in the desert. No one would have expected that everything would go down the moment Malcom Corley, the head of Corley motors and motorbike enthusiast, entered the bar. Vice president Ripburger finally sees his chance to secure the CEO position for himself, knocking out Ben and luring both, the Polecats and Corley, in a trap. Can Ben rescue his gang and Corley or will Corley Motors become a boring minivan producer, dooming the motorbike culture for ever?
What may sounded like a new or fresh story back in 1995 just became bland and boring nowadays and Full Throttle is no exception. Frankly, it has a handful of Twists throughout its ~5 hour long story but overall, it just feels boring, overused and mostly unsurprising. The whole story just tells this generic “good guy has to proof innocence” plot that so many generic games and movies used, it can´t hook me anymore and definetly shows that Full Throttle is from a different time. However, that´s not the point of a “Heavy Metal Adventure”, right? So, let´s talk about its amazing presentation and Soundtrack. From the opening scene, to motorbike fights or car chases, Full Throttle nails every single moment, with memorable and amazing metal tracks combined with great camera perspectives. Even after I completed the game I still remember certain scenes like I played them minutes ago.
Everything beautifully wrapped up in a coat of remastered art and 3D models. Where the Original consisted of pixel-characters and rough backgrounds Full Throttle Remastered shines with lovely re-painted characters, backgrounds, scenes and new models. As expected from Double Fine they could transform the artistic vision into the modern world, yet keeping its old-timer charm. The result is a game that looks like it could have been released for the first time but reminding you of the good ol’ biker days. Combined with the still amazing voice-over and possibility to change back to the original graphics, creates a prime example of a remastered game.
Unfortunately the presentation is its only flawless point, that profited more from its age than lost. Gameplay-wise Full Throttle Remastered is more of a hit and miss than anything else. Don´t get me wrong, I enjoyed the creativity that was put into the puzzles and loved the difficulty, which hit the spot between “too easy” and “too hard” just right. However, the way the puzzles force you to interact with the environments is just outdated. All puzzles are collection based, meaning that you often won´t even have a chance at figuring out what to do without having collected the necessary items.
Modern adventures like Paradigm showed the need of “item highlighter”, to prevent aimless clicking on every scene, hoping that you may find the needed item there. Full Throttle Remastered would have been THE chance to implement such a feature here as well, sadly this isn´t the case, making it a, excuse me, pain in the ass to find these items, esepecially because the areas are often packed with details. The whole exploration and item search just feels old, due to the lack of modern comfort features. Additionally, the game also features motorbike combat, which is, honestly, a complete mess and shouldn´t even exist in an adventure game. Basically, it consists of hitting the right mouse button, hoping that you hit the enemy, it´s brainless, dumb and mostly luck-based. I understand that it should bring some diversity in the game but if a mechanic doesn´t work and isn´t fun, don´t make it a necessarity. The Gameplay has a really good core, due to its great puzzles, but it fails at extending the outdated design surrounding this core.
Full Throttle Remastered is one of the most stylish games I´ve ever played, cause of its great Soundtrack and beautiful fitting graphics. Yet it can´t carry its Gameplay to the modern times as good as its style. Leading to an annoying search for items, due to non-existant comfort functions, mixed with a terrible motorbike combat system.
I was often annoyed, during my time with Full Throttle, but was amazed by its Soundtrack and great moments nearly as often. Despite my criticism I´m surprised how well this game still works nowadays and how much I enjoyed it. In my opinion, it may not be a perfect adventure game but the Remastered version is definetly the way to go, if you want to replay or experience this truly amazing classic, without worrying about technical issues, compatiblity or pixel-graphics.