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Fright of the

Bumble Bees

Available Here!

 

Platform

PC

 

Genre

Adventure

 

Publisher

Telltale Games

 

Developer

Telltale Games

 

ESRB

T (Teen)

 

Released

March 24, 2009

 

 

- A true cinematic adventure game that brings the movie stars seamlessly into a game that plays out as the latest Wallace & Gromit flick
- Good amount of diversity in the game’s environment

 

 

- While it has it funny moments, doesn’t match the humor level of either of Telltale Game’s recent episodic adventure series, Sam & Max or Strong Bad’s Cool Game for Attractive People
- Manually moving around Wallace and Gromit using the keyboard is slightly awkward versus the prevalent click-to-move setup of Sam & Max or Strong Bad’s Cool Game for Attractive People

 

 

Review: Strong Bad Episode 5 (PC)

Review: Sam & Max Season 2 (PC)

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Wallace & Gromit's Grand Adventure: Fright of the Bumble Bees

Score: 8.5 / 10

 

There is arguably no closer relationship between man and beast than that of a guy and his dog. Faithful and loyal companions, canines have forged their way into man’s lives like no other animal that’s ever lived. One of the most special bonds between a man and his dog is portrayed by the famous “claymation” film duo, Wallace and Gromit.

 

wallace gromit          wallace gromit


Wallace the somewhat shy, flaky, naive and nerdy British chap with a obsessive taste for cheese that fancies himself an inventor is constantly bailed out of sticky situations by his devoted pooch Gromit. And a sticky situation is exactly what Wallace and Gromit find themselves in, in more ways than one, in the first game –

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- PC Game Reviews

- Adventure Game Reviews

Fright of the Bumble Bees in the newest Telltale Games episodic point & click adventure series, Wallace & Gromit’s Grand Adventures.

Telltale Games has already successfully developed two previous series Sam & Max and Strong Bad’s Cool Game for Attractive People – into very good point & click games. And that wasn’t easy to do, considering that the

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point & click adventure had been long thought to be a dead gaming genre. An even bigger risk was presenting both titles as episodic adventures, each broken up into smaller episodes released over time instead of the more traditional route of releasing a complete game at once. But Telltale Games resuscitated point & clicking and also proved that the episodic business model can be a success, and brings that expertise to the most famous subject matter in any of its games with Wallace and Gromit.

Wallace, needing a quick money fix in order to get out of a financial crisis, decides to get into the honey business. One problem: the tiny bees with the help of the pollinating invention of his can’t produce a large enough quantity of honey in time. So, using a miracle-growth formula, Wallace bulks up the flowers needed to assist his bees in their honey making to ridiculously enormous proportions, and the honey starts flowing free and plentiful. But the growth formula has an unexpected side effect: it increases the size of the honey bees, too, who decide to flex their newfound muscles all around town, buzzing and bullying the terrorized townsfolk. Just a simple, everyday misadventure Wallace and Gromit always seem to get themselves into.

While the game sticks primarily to the point & click gaming conventions of first finding then combining objects to solve the many puzzles, it relies on using the keyboard to move around. This does make moving Wallace and Gromit around slightly more awkward than the prevalent click-to-move setup in the two preceding Telltale Games point & click titles.

 

wallace gromit          wallace gromit


One trademark of both those Telltale Games titles has been extremely funny humor along with very well written scripts. While Fright of the Bumble Bees features a strong script, the humor – maybe owing to the fact that its characters are British, and British humor has its own eccentricities that not everybody outside England finds as funny as the Queen’s people isn’t as funny as found in the more smart-alecky ribaldry of Sam & Max and Strong Bad.

Where Fright of the Bumble Bees soars above the two other Telltale Games series – and it’s no surprise, really, considering the history of Wallace & Gromit – is in its cinematic presentation quality. This game really does play out just like the newest Wallace & Gromit short film, with strong voice acting throughout Fright of the Bumble Bees’ many cut scenes. It’s really easy to forget that you are playing a game and not watching a movie. But when you are actually involved in playing Fright of the Bumble Bees, it is a solid point & click adventure with smart and challenging puzzles. While they can sometimes be hard to figure out (like in the frustratingly hard-to-aim shooting puzzle and the climatic queen bee truck chase), using the game’s very helpful hint system does get gamers out of any head-scratching conundrum.

Keeping the gameplay from getting too stale or predictable is the variety and diversity of Fright of the Bumble Bees’ environments. Wallace and Gromit venture from their comfy domain into the front yard and beyond, traveling to the small village they live in to solve the game’s many puzzles.

While the British humor leanings of Fright of the Bumble Bees might not be everybody’s cup of tea (and crumpets), and doesn’t have the same hilarity level of both the Sam & Max and Strong Bad games, it is funny enough and continues the Telltale Games propensity for creating yet another very enjoyable point & click adventure with a smartly written story and tough-enough puzzles.

- Lee Cieniawa
lcieniawa@armchairempire.com

(May 4, 2009)

 

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