I’ve had this PC for about two years, and it’s never had a game installed on it. That’s how much interest I have in PC games. And I’ve never paid for a download-only game. Sam & Max: Episode 1: Culture Shock changed both of these this week.
It’s been out for a while – in fact the second of the six episodes is out now too – but I was reluctant to challenge my comfortable prejudices. My memories of the original Sam & Max became too strong to resist. And do you know what? Nothing’s changed.
Well, everything has changed – graphics, voice actors, storyline – but it’s still funny. Not funny ‘for a game’, not ‘geek’ funny, but funny. FUNNY. For anyone. The dialogue is intelligent and almost uniformly hilarious. The situations are ridiculous and wonderful. The characters are absurd and absorbing. The puzzles are clever and logical. It’s the proper point ‘n’ click Sam & Max adventure I’d hoped for.
Best of all, it’s cheap (less than a fiver an episode) and short (a few hours, and self-contained). It’s left me wanting more as a result, but that’s what the other episodes are for.
Hooray for digital distribution and episodic games!