Grim Fandango is an adventure game released first on PC back in 1998. The game was lauded for its characters, story, and amusing dialogue. With the remastered version, you are back in the shoes of Manny Calavera, a travel agent working in the Land of the Dead, whose job is to send recently departed souls to the Ninth Underworld.
The game is now available on iOS and Android and has been redone with enhanced graphics. Let’s take a look.
Grim Fandango is primarily a puzzle based point and click adventure game. To progress through the story, you will have to solve a lot of puzzles, and interact with other characters through the various dialogues to get additional information from them or get things done. You move around by tapping on the screen, which causes Manny to walk there. You can double tap to make him run.
The best things about the game are the story, the dialogues and the character. The game has some very interesting characters and they are all get terrific voice acting from their respective actors. The script is also amusing and has some really good dialogue between characters.
Unfortunately, all of this is bogged down by the tedious puzzles. You have to collect every little object that you come across because you will be needing them at some point or the other. The game doesn’t really do a good job of highlighting these objects so half the time you don’t even know they are there or need to be interacted with. Then, you need to know what to do with those objects. If by some epiphany you figure that out then maybe, just maybe, you will be able to solve the puzzle that might come some time in the future.
The puzzles are not clever, they are just vague and require some superhuman level of intuition to figure out. Anybody who claims to finish the game without resorting to a walkthrough even once is either a genius or straight up lying.
The puzzles seem like the weakest part of the gameplay. You want to play more and see what happens next but you obviously can’t move forward without solving some elaborate puzzle first.
The visuals in the remaster have given a good boost of additional textures. It doesn’t really look great despite that but considering it’s an old game you really don’t care much. The game is in 4:3 aspect ratio, through, so only really works well on the iPad or any other 4:3 tablet and on everything else with a widescreen display you get gray bars on the side. The music in the game is good too and has been re-recorded for the remaster.
Overall, Grim Fandango Remastered is a good purchase if you played and liked the original and want to play it again. If you’re new to this, you should know the puzzles are complicated and a bit annoying. If you think you can deal with that then the rest of the game is worth playing for.
Pros: Good story, dialogue, characters, and music
Cons: Convoluted puzzles
Worth Buying?: For diehard fans of the original and those who don’t mind challenging puzzles
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