Jump to content
rllmuk
Sign in to follow this  
SMD

Grim Fandango Remastered (PS4, Vita, PC, Mac, Linux)

Recommended Posts

Decided to economise and go retro.... dug this out of the cupboard today....

16364188376_107b975043_c.jpg

Now for the first puzzle.... get it working on a modern PC.... :D

Edit: Well that was easier than I expected:

Running in all it's glory on Windows 8.1 with full sound:-

16204449847_6e27624b02_z.jpg

For those interested instructions here:-

http://www.play-old-pc-games.com/2013/01/04/grim-fandango/

(you'll need to find some source disks though to get the data!)

  • Upvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Stopped at the beginning of Act 2 for the night. Writing/atmosphere/humour is as good as everyone always says, of course. I'm pretty mixed on the puzzles really. Although I was stuck a few times I only had to consult a walkthrough once. That said, I'm sure that I got through some of the other puzzles more due some vague ten year old memories in the back of my head than by fully deducing the answer myself. I solved one puzzle in the Petrified Forest by pure luck as well.

The remastering is, in general, around the same kind of level as the recent Resident Evil remaster. Some bits look great, some look a bit suspect. The odd cutscene looks really old/grainy compared to the others, it's a little strange. The colours are generally more muted due to the new lighting which causes some problems in the Petrified Forest if you put a certain item down in a certain place and can't remember where you left it due to the new colour scheme. I had to switch back to the old version to be able to find it again. Apart from that it's definitely a general improvement though.

I would personally have just cut the whole Petrified Forest sequence out. The puzzles were odd and the whole sequence adds absolutely nothing to the narrative, or even any character development. It's a peculiar detour that rather deflates the pace just as things are getting going. Ugly graphically too.

Puzzles I would say were reasonably suspect, not just in the Petrified Forest, are:

- Nearly everything to do with intercepting the message system, but in particular the bit where you have to stick a card with holes punched in through a tiny slot you can hardly see. Though Manny's dialogue about air pressure when you stick a regular card in there basically gives the game away, it's really not obvious at all that there's even a tiny gap in the tube there you can interact with. I only figured it out by doing the old 'use everything on everything' adventure game technique.

- Not so much a puzzle failure as an interface failure, I feel, but I remember getting stuck on this part 10 years ago as well. When you climb up the rope, I kept trying to pick it up so I could swing it over to the ladder. But you have to be stood in a very particular spot to do this, to the point where it's very easy to think that the game doesn't want you to approach the puzzle that way.

- The sign puzzle is bad for various reasons. When you read walkthroughs and they still struggle to properly communicate what you need to do (I had to read two before I understood what they meant) then it's probably a bit of a duffer. Even if you get that you need to pick up the sign and put it down in the tree maze because the sign will change direction when needed, which isn't really that obvious to begin with, everything about what happens there suggests that you need to drive the car through the holes in the trees the sign is pointing at. Picking it up and putting it down while walking around till you reveal a ramp is almost groan-inducing as a solution.

- The tree pump puzzles I solved by accident. I just got Glottis to swing around on it while I moved the wheelbarrow back and forth until something happened. I could see that it was changing the rhythm of the pumps but didn't really know what they wanted me to do with that.

Anyway, I believe that Act 2 is meant to ramp things up a lot in terms of quality so I'm looking forward to carrying on tomorrow.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For those puzzles:

Every time you bust the message system and the demon comes to fix it, when he finishes you specifically get a close-up of him removing a special metal card from the tube slot to open the air flow again. I remember realising from that back in the day how to solve the puzzle and to try with the card.

The sign puzzle is fair enough though, that's a bastard. And the tree pump one is pretty obtuse but I let it off because it's really satisfying to solve and Glottis swinging around is fucking great.

I'm at the halfway point now and just in hog heaven. It's so good to play again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just had that. Update was available while playing the game but it said "cannot update", even when quitting the game. I restarted my PS4 and it downloaded fine.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not getting on with this. The actual gameplay elements and obscure puzzles are a nasty barrier to enjoying the great writing and progressing the story. I remember enjoying this about 15 years ago, but I also remember having to consult a walkthrough to get through it. I figured I wouldn't have to this time around.

Wrong.

Polygon says it best, "This isn't an overhaul; it's a museum piece." It's of its time, and while the story will always be great, everything else about the game has not aged well at all. I don't want to to continue playing, because I find playing it frustrating and annoying. :(

edit: It's also buggy as fuck! Disappearing characters, invisible inventory items (I had three invisible breadsticks) and now I'm locked in my inventory. I can switch between remastered and original modes, I can hear the music, but I can't do anything else, none of the buttons are registering. It's not my PS4, as I can go back to the PSN menus fine. Now I have to close the game, and lose my progress.

That's it. I'm done. What a waste of fucking money.

Oh dear. Must admit it wasn't my favourite LucasArts point 'n clickr back in the day. Used to like using the mouse and this was the first one that was orientated towards joysticks/pads. Anyway.... never did play through my PC original aiming to try and get through it this time!

Looking forward to the day of the tentacle remake more than I was this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I finished my replay of the remastered game yesterday and loved it all over again. I had one bug in Year 4 relating to alt-tabbing (Manny's head disappeared - I think because it was a different model of head from the usual) but that was all.

Can't disagree with LeChuck strongly enough, honestly. I think it holds up very well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I played it in 1998-9, and again in about 2008. I still remembered most of how to finish the game, although I also remember which puzzles I got stuck on originally (and which I flew through). I don't see walkthrough use as a particularly bad thing with old adventure games so don't hold that against them, and Grim does have some really satisfying puzzles alongside the obtuse ones (which are still nowhere near as bad as the worst of games like The Longest Journey). There are no item combination puzzles in the game, for starters, so that's one vector of bullshit completely removed.

I think there's more to Grim Fandango than just 'gameplay elements' and 'story' - it's not like it's 50% of the game that doesn't stand up. Old adventure game puzzles are very much a thing of the past but it's not that they've aged badly, it's just that we have less patience for stuff these days, and usually less time to play games too. I'm personally delighted by how good the writing still is, that it wasn't just a case of thinking it was good when I was 12, and the voice acting and soundtrack are the equal of - if not better than - any modern game. It was always a good-looking game too and the backgrounds may still be low-ish resolution but they look good, and the updated 3D models are still very much in keeping with the aesthetic even though they look a lot better. In terms of atmosphere and sense of place and all that, it still does a great job - particularly in the second act.

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Playing this for the first time. It's a fun world to be in but I spent ages figuring out what to do next and finally had to look it up only to fight you can turn RIGHT in the lobby (at the door leading to the outside with the clown). Arrrgh, it's exactly what they moaned about in the Polygon review. You'd think they could easily adjust areas like that to make it a bit more obvious. It totally looks like a dead end.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Decided to economise and go retro.... dug this out of the cupboard today....

16364188376_107b975043_c.jpg

Now for the first puzzle.... get it working on a modern PC.... :D

Edit: Well that was easier than I expected:

Running in all it's glory on Windows 8.1 with full sound:-

16204449847_6e27624b02_z.jpg

For those interested instructions here:-

http://www.play-old-pc-games.com/2013/01/04/grim-fandango/

(you'll need to find some source disks though to get the data!)

looking at some of the rllmuk comments, maybe I'll dig the CDs out instead of buying the remake

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Except, presumably if you're on PC then you're not lumbered with the spectacularly PS4 version of the rerelease, so grabbing the Remastered version makes some sense.

Plus, y'know, not having to use tank controls.

(Just realised: this makes a change, a game where it's the non-PC port that's the most bugged release! Makes a change)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I hate to say it but I just don't think I gel with this game's logic at all. I was making decent progress in Act 2 by myself, but by the end (everything to do with the clue trail left behind to find the photo, for example) I was just constantly consulting a walkthrough. Then there's the puzzles where you have the right idea but the game is incredibly specific about how you do them or makes you think they're doing them wrong.

Then you get to the start of act 3 and the fannying around with anchors and I just feel like it's a case of me going through the game with a walkthrough on my lap. I feel sad about not getting on with it properly because so much of it is great (everything at the beatnik club and to do with the metal detector is amazingly funny, for example) but it feels extremely obtuse to me, way more than many of the old Lucasarts games I played in the past, and that's even without the ability to combine items. Maybe it's something to do with this this being pure Schafer whereas the older games had multiple contributors, so it's all kind of running on one man's logic? I dunno. I'm sure there's an element of impatient modern gamer to it as well. I no longer have the inclination to sit there for an hour trying everything with everything. Nowadays it just feels like getting in the way of the good bits.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Its not rubbish - its just a 90s point and click with tim schafer humour and a great setting. As its a 90's point and click it has all the bad stuff that came from that age for example specific logic of the game designs mind behind puzzles. I was surprised to see it get such high reviews as it sounds like they haven't really changed the 'game; part of it that was always a bit weak, I mean the game and setting is fun, its funny, but the puzzles really beat me up too in places. Is there a new hint system in pcae - that could have helped the pain?

Based on impressions so far, im going to grab it of steam eventually on sale (even if its just 10% off). Maybe im a little bitter as I feel its a bit over celebrated - yes its funny and has a great setting - but everything else.... (oh the new controls must be great!)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

looking at some of the rllmuk comments, maybe I'll dig the CDs out instead of buying the remake

Well that was my thoughts TBH. Never finished it in the day so thought I'd try to work out why rather than spend more money looking through rose tinted specs...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm finding the biggest problem to be stuff being hard to see. They hadn't had much experience with pre-rendered backgrounds and it shows. Stuff like the stapler in year one are really easy to miss. And I've found in year two it's easy to miss whole rooms because entrances and exits are unclear in places.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I still bloody love this game (although the remaster isn't really that good IMHO, OK the res is much better but I thought they might have gone a bit further, as a mode you could switch on.

There are undeniably some very obscure puzzles in this but the whole joy of these games for me is pottering about and then going AHA! and running back to do the thing with the thing, or maybe if I go and have a look back at home something might have happened... I can appreciate the frustration but the mulling over the puzzles is part of the appeal to me

I can't defend some of the angles and so on though but they do quite often have a little clue though, you will see an NPC oing to all of the places - the one in the lobby you see the repairman go to both sides, the waiter goes up the stairs in the high rollers lounge and they show the other booth in the cat racing lounge with the schizo bloke that works there. To be honest though, I noticed that it did this a lot on this time round, I didn't know the photo booth guy was there for fucking ages when I first played it.

The commentary is interesting too for the most part.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I remember this game coming out in 1998 but I didn't have a (decent) PC at the time so it was one of many games that got put on the backburner for another day. It only took twenty years but I got around to it eventually! :lol:

 

I love it! The writing is incredibly sharp, the settings and stories are imaginitive, the characters are great, and the gameplay avoids the pixelhunting "try everything" approach to adventure games (somewhat) by limiting the number of interactive things and simplifying the interface, but keeping the ingenuity of the puzzles. It doesn't always work but it's pretty effective.

 

It's also one of very few P'n'Cs that I've managed to complete without consulting a walkthrough even once, but in so doing I did probably spend a few hours trying to work things out and the temptation to seek help almost got me a couple of times. Impatient Gamer Syndrome is easier to avoid on handhelds, I find, as I can just dip in for an hour here and there and not be too bothered if I make no "progress" in a session.

 

How crazy is it that Grim Fandango is playable on a fricking handheld, by the way? Living the future.

 

The remastering is a bit of a mixed bag, I feel. The cleaned up backgrounds and cutscenes are good, the redrawn textures look great and some of the new lighting is very impressive (particularly early on, the slatted window in Manny's office casts incredible shadows!), but there are other times when the original renderer actually looks better! For example, times when the original stark blocky shadow or a strong light source is removed in the new renderer (eg. entering the LSA headquarters, Manny's silhouette by the entrance is gone, or walking onto the open mic stage in the Blue Casket club).

 

Elsewhere, the new lighting adds lovely hues and natural shadows that fit in perfectly, but other times it looks a bit flat or overlit. The Thunder Boys look bloody radioactive in remastered view, the sewer monster looks like he's been bleached, the Angelitos have no shadows when they're flying around the beach, and the spinning sign puzzle in the forest is almost impossible to even see, as it blends into the grey background. If they'd considered each scene more carefully and tried to replicate the original lighting, it'd be the best of both worlds, but as it stands I just kept switching between views constantly to see which looked better in each area. And putting the graphics switching on a button just makes it so bloody addictive! :lol:

 

I can't fault the controls, there's loads of options and they all work fine. Tank, direct, or pointing. Choose your preference.

 

The music is great. I dunno if it's remastered too or whatever, but I love how it transitions from area to area smoothly. "iMuse", wasn't it? Great stuff.

 

The puzzle solving can be obtuse but it can also be bruteforced if you've missed something important. And a lot of the dialogue holds important clues; characters may mention something that you think is inconsequential but will actually be vital to solving a puzzle later. This is something that happens to me a lot in P'n'Cs - I'll have spent hours running around trying to solve something and completely forgotten what character X said earlier. The cat race / ticket stub / blimp photo puzzle was a problem for this, as was the combustible packing foam clue (from the first chapter, how would I remember THAT?!), as was anything involving remembering character names or who was working for who. Although I've played enough adventure games now to get a feel for the 'language' and second-guess what I'm expected to do*, so for example anything that has an interactive window while a character is doing something, I'll know right away that I should be doing something while they're distracted rather than just stand there idly (the fridge door puzzle). Oh, but that elevator basement forklift thing took me a while to work out - that was very clever and unexpected. On the other hand, the puzzles in the forest were a bit shit (wheelbarrow over pipes, throwing bones for beavers?!).

 

Sadly, this is one of the glitchiest/buggiest games I've played on the Vita (maybe the original was buggy too, or maybe the bugs are new, I don't know). It crashed completely at least six times, there were several non-critical glitches like invisible items, or temporary freezes, lots of stuttering in busy areas. Save often, save regularly! Otherwise, it's a well put together package. A careful restoration of the original, options for new graphics and controls, optional in-game commentary (more games need to do this!), art galleries and funny achievements.

 

And it's a terrific game, to boot. Another classic ticked off the list.

 

 

*Incidentally, I totally thought I had to learn the beatnik lingo and put together a convincing poem in the club, a la Monkey Island's insult swordfighting, but that never happened.

(Hissss! Hissss!!)

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rubacava was the best. The puzzle solving was incredible there, so much to work out and lots of back and forth, non-linear objectives, massive inventory and stuff. The rest of the game's puzzle logic was a bit tame compared to that, I guess that's where most of the development time went.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. Use of this website is subject to our Privacy Policy, Terms of Use, and Guidelines.