As I said during our interview here, Wadjet Eye Games is known for more serious titles, such as the Blackwell Series and Gemini Rue. Chris Burton from Icebox Studios looks to change all that with Da New Guys. Are Simon, Brain, and Defender worth teaming up with? Keep reading…
I’ve always had a place in my heart for comedy adventure games. They really had their heyday in the mid-90’s with games like Day of the Tentacle, the Monkey Island series, and of course, Sam and Max Hit the Road. Although Telltale Games has had success resurrecting Sam and Max and Monkey Island, I really feared the genre was on life support. Then I played Da New Guys, and my faith was restored. I haven’t laughed this much playing a point and click adventure since those halcyon LucasArts days.
I honestly found this game to be funnier than many of Telltale’s latest offerings. There’s just something about Simon’s deadpan snark, Defender’s quiet desperation, and Brain’s almost inhuman level of arrogance and stupidity that made me laugh out loud. Often. I think I may have even snorted a few times. Don’t let the fact that the main characters are wrestlers throw you. While it does help you pick up on some inside jokes, you certainly don’t have to be a wrestling fan to enjoy Da New Guys. At its core, this is a Saturday morning cartoon in video game form where the story is about the team and there adventures, some of which happen to take place in the world of professional wrestling.
While the graphics are simple at times, they are generally bright and colorful, making each character and location instantly recognizable. There’s even some nifty 3D stuff thrown in at the end. Voice acting is where this game really stands out. Chris Burton should be commended for his work portraying Simon, Defender, and Brain. Extra special mention has to go to Abe Goldfarb as the evil Smiley Joe. I could listen to that kid pontificate all day long. His “nemesis” speech, although kind of a throwaway line, almost made me spit take my soda.
Da New Guys is not a particularly difficult game. This is primarily a title to be played through and enjoyed, not to be stumped and frustrated by. Most of the puzzles follow a consistent internal logic. Only once or twice did I find the solution especially “game-y” as it were. The only thing I really didn’t like was a bit of an over-reliance on puzzles where an antagonist stole something I had just solved multiple puzzles already to obtain, requiring me to solve yet more puzzles in order to get it back. This was especially galling when it felt like the plot wasn’t advancing as quickly as it could. That being said, there are some brilliant moments as well- I was very impressed by a “stealth” mission involving a laser field, and there was an inspired sequence that takes place in a walk-through restaurant where patrons are swept through on conveyor belts.
I think the highest praise I can give Da New Guys is the fact that when I was finished playing, I immediately went to find the original game (available on the AGS website) and also watched the short film “For the Winnings,” because I didn’t want to be done with the characters just yet. Da New Guys is the most pure fun I’ve had with an adventure game in quite some time. Available at www.wadjeteyegames.com for $10, this one’s a no-Brain-er (ahem).