Fans of the original Runaway
game will no doubt be delighted to have a sequel in their hands. Brian Basco, Gina, Sushi, and perhaps a few others have returned in this colorful comic-style romp.
The game begins with a lengthy cut scene. We see Brian throwing a struggling Gina from a plane. Someone is looking at the parachuting Gina through a gun’s crosshairs, shots are fired, and she appears to be lifeless as she floats down into a lake. We then see Brian e-mailing Sushi to ask her for help. As he writes Sushi of his adventures, so too are we told of what has transpired.
Brian writes of his vacation with Gina in Hawaii, and her wish to see the Tiki falls on the remote Mala Island. But trouble seems to follow Gina like a shadow – the pilot dies, the plane is crashing, and there’s only one parachute! Brian nobly throws Gina out with it, but it looks like Gina didn’t get the better end of the deal. The trees cushion the fall of the plane, and Brian sustains mere scratches. At this point game play begins, and it’s up to you to rummage through the plane and surroundings in order to obtain the tools to get out of the jungle and find Gina.
It isn’t just the wild jungle that will pose a problem for Brian, of course. The island has been commandeered by a psychotic colonel with a mysterious agenda. This colonel has evacuated the island of most of the civilians, but apparently missed a few eccentric characters that may or may not help Brian in his attempts to find Gina. What is going on in the Tiki Temple? Why does that silent monk seem vaguely familiar? And will Brian forget all about Gina when he meets the lovely Lokelani? From the lush island of Mala to the icy mountains of Alaska, this is a visually stunning pure adventure game done in cartoon style.GameplayMovement and item interaction:
The game is played from a third person perspective with mouse control. “Keyboards are for pianists”
says the manual. You simply click where you want your character to go. There are arrows that make this movement easier in many places, and if you double click the arrow, you will be transported immediately. If you double click where there is no arrow, Brian still walks rather than runs, so it is of great benefit to use the arrows when you see them. In many places the scene also scrolls from side to side to show the additional area.
As you move the mouse across the screen, text appears, identifying items with which you may interact. Left click and you will find out more information. A right click on the object will advise which action may be taken.Inventory:
Inventory is conveniently accessed above your game play screen, by moving your mouse upwards and clicking on the left hand symbol. It is of much benefit to examine the items you have obtained more carefully, as additional inventory may come to light. You can, and must, combine some items. When you wish to use an item, you right click on it, and it becomes your cursor.
Keep in mind that you may need to return to pick up items not previously available to you as the need arises.Puzzles:
I haven’t finished the game but at seventy percent through or thereabouts, almost all puzzles were inventory based, and at least one easy mechanical puzzle (therefore no mazes or sliders). So far no color or sound puzzles. I have not yet encountered any timed sequences. It is often necessary to elicit a dialog response to trigger the story line. Brian clearly will not do what doesn’t suit him, and I don’t think he can die.Other:
The game is broken up into chapters. There is an abundance of cut scenes, which should be watched for clues to the game. There is also an abundance of dialog available, much of which is not necessary to hear. The problem is that you can’t ever be sure if you will miss a clue by not clicking on it. However, you can speed through it if you choose by simply clicking your mouse a second time.Visuals and Sound
Contemporary music that is catchy and fun, sound effects which are appropriate to areas, visually a smorgasbord of color and design. There is so much design to it, that it takes a while in each scene just to observe everything. A minor concern when it comes to finding items and locations, and pixel hunting could be a problem. Voiceovers are professionally done. And goodness, what has happened to Brian? Besides the new hairdo, he is much more buff. You’ll see.Options
You can save the game at any point outside of the cut scenes.
Besides volume control, you can adjust video and sound quality, or elect to not have anti-aliasing, which may be helpful on lower end computers.
There are subtitles by default, which you can elect to remove.Special Stuff
There are two extra features in the game that are unusual and quite nice. First, from the options menu, you may view snapshots of the first Runaway
game, and hear a brief overview from Brian.
Secondly, when you complete a chapter in the game, you can elect to replay that chapter. Helpful if you didn’t save or you just want to see it again from the beginning of the chapter.
Not an extra, but the beauty and handiness of the manual should be noted. It is exceptionally well written, helpful and humorous. It even has some art sketches in it! Whoever took the time with the manual should be patted on the back.Technical
Loading time seemed excessive to me, as it appeared to hang up at the one percentage point for longer than seemed necessary. I know its picayune, but why have that ugly loading block over that gorgeous artwork so you can’t see the turtle? Other than this minor quibble, the game thus far has played flawlessly, with no apparent bugs or glitches.Conclusion
A well crafted game. I thought some of the characters a bit too stereotyped, but perhaps that is poetic license with cartoon-like games. Sometimes the humor seems too forced. There is also some mild risqué humor. If you liked the first Runaway
, you will most likely love the even better Runaway 2
.Would you like to learn more about Runaway 2: The Dream of the Turtle? Read the full review by Looney4Labs.