Full Throttle

Review by Jen

Anyone who has ever played a LucasArts game knows they generally have fluffy but entertaining plots, and Full Throttle is no exception. You are Ben, thuggish yet somehow appealing member of a motorcycle gang called the Polecats. You must save Corley Motors, the last domestic (US) manufacturer of motorcycles, from being taken over by the evil Adrian Ripburger while rescuing your gang from his ne'er-do-well clutches. You must use your wits sometimes, but more often you must use brute strength, have a bad attitude, and resort to plain old-fashioned thievery to solve the problems you encounter. The plot is pretty stock stuff, but I really enjoyed being a bad boy (reminded me of some guys I dated oh so long ago).

Full Throttle's cartoon-style animation is great (it's a LucasArts game—that is one of their strengths, in my opinion). The cutscenes all look nearly TV-quality. There is some pixelation and some not-quite-so-smooth parts in the gameplay—I attribute it to the release date of 1994, when a 486 with Super VGA was state-of-the-art. Do cartoons have directors? Cinematographers? Do video games? I really liked the "camera angles" and points of view in this game. Taking into consideration the fact that this game is pretty dated, the graphics actually hold up pretty well.

Most of the puzzles are typical LucasArts: using an inventory item from one place to get to another place, or to make it more complicated, combining one inventory item with one or more other inventory items and using the combination in another place. The puzzles in this game, however, are easier than usual because most of the inventory items get used in the same chapter in which you found them. Full Throttle also adds some arcade sequences. There is one place where you ride your motorcycle around and around on an old mine road, beating up other motorcyclists to gain more powerful inventory items with which to beat up yet other motorcyclists. You also participate in a demolition derby (this was the hardest part for me) where you have to steer clear of (or hit, as the case may be) other cars to reach an objective.

The music and sound effects are not standout, nor are they intrusive. The music is generic biker rock 'n' roll, and it sets the mood of the game. The sound effects all pretty much fit with what's going on in the game.

For the most part, I really enjoyed Full Throttle. While it is not one of LucasArts's better efforts, it is definitely worth the time it takes to play this short game. The End

The Verdict

The Lowdown

Developer: LucasArts
Publisher: LucasArts
Release Date: 1994

Available for: Macintosh Windows

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