Happy Trogday! Free Strong Bad Episode

By John Walker on January 13th, 2010 at 6:10 pm.

TrogDOOOORRRRRRRRRRR!

Well apparently it’s Trogday. If you’re a fan of Homestar Runner, you’re probably as sad about the lack of new content on the site as me. Just because one of the Bros. Chaps had a baby doesn’t mean they can miss a Decemberween cartoon, the lazy buggers. If you’re not a fan, you’ve no idea what this is about and you’re thinking of clicking away. But wait! A great way to find out would be to get a free episode of Telltale’s really fantastic Strong Bad adventures. For today only they’re giving away episode 5 (the last in the series, oddly) for free. And it’s well worth getting hold of.

To explain. Homestar Runner is a website of Flash cartoons about a group of silly characters being silly. And it’s generally very funny. The stand-out character is Strong Bad, the Mexican wrestling mask-wearing, boxing glove-handed petulant bully who answers viewer email, so it was only natural for he to be the star of the series of episodic adventure games last year. They were a lot of fun, thanks both to the consistently great writing from the H*R creators, Matt and Mike Chapman, and puzzle design from the likes of Mike Stemmle.

Episode 5 saw everything go bonkers as Strong Bad gets knocked unconscious beside his Trogdor The Burninator arcade machine, and has a deeply peculiar dream that allowed some of H*R’s stranger elements to be included. And to tremendous effect. Right up until they absolutely awful ending. Which was a bit of a shame. But not enough of a shame to make it any less worth playing. Very funny, and with some really decent puzzles. And today, free!

The only catch appears to be needing to sign up to the Telltale mailing list (from which you could then immediately unsub should it offend you too greatly). You can get it from here.

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26 Comments »

  1. jsutcliffe says:

    Why the last episode? That makes no sense at all, unless each episode is standalone.

  2. Vinraith says:

    Ah, excellent, thanks for the heads up, John.

    I’d been wanting to see if my affection for Strong Bad was sufficient to offset my general disinterest in adventure games of late, this is a good way to find out.

  3. Mad Doc MacRae says:

    Can’t complain about the price, downloading now.

  4. Inigo says:

    @jsutcliffe
    They are standalone, more or less. They picked the last episode because it’s the only one that actually has Trogdor in it.

  5. Tom O'Bedlam says:

    Ooo I’ll have to have a gander at this. I’ve really enjoyed the Sam and Max TellTale games, yet I’ve been told by another adventure loving friend not to bother with the Strong Bad series, apparently because “they’re just not very funny”. Hooray for free trials to let me make my own mind up :)

    Not sure why the hivemind doesn’t like the Sam & Max ones, which, with the exception of the greatly over-used soda poppers, is hilarious and taxing enough to keep me perfectly happy for a few hours.

    • PUKED says:

      I loved the Sam and Max games, and always liked Homestar, but this series is just… meh. Bland puzzles, and generally much less funny than Homestar shorts. Not to mention that unlike S&M, which got better as it went along, Homestar peaks at the second episodes at which point things go quickly downhill. You could just feel the devs losing faith in the project.

      The whole thing was kind of depressing, really. The second ep was amazing though, if I did it again I’d just pick that one up and skip the rest.

  6. Jad says:

    When you say the Strongbad Adventures are “really fantastic”, do they get better as they go along, like the Sam & Max episodes? Because I’ve played most of the first one, and while it’s alright, I didn’t love it. Not as good as some of the later S&M eps and certainly not as good as the new Monkey Islands. I haven’t gone back to it in months and it’ll probably take a while for me to figure out what I was even doing. Should I skip the rest of the first Strongbad episode and move on to the next, or just take the series as a loss?

  7. TCM says:

    Personally, I think the series picks up at Strong Badia The Free, and never looks back.

    The first episode is kinda weak.

    • Jad says:

      @TCM

      Thanks. I’ll move on to the next episode.

      I thought the first two episodes of Sam & Max were also weak, and I’m glad I first played the (free on Steam) fourth episode first. I might not have given Telltale another chance otherwise.

  8. Brumisator says:

    TROGADOOOOOR!

  9. Psychopomp says:

    LOOKS LIKE I’M GONNA HAVE TO JUUUUMMMP

  10. Rudolfo says:

    thanks to the hivemind I now have some more Euros to spend on alcoholic beverages, here’s to you!

  11. hungSolo says:

    If anyone else is wondering how to unlock the game, after you’ve installed, click on the “Take me to the demo” or whatever button, which will then give you the option of entering a serial number.

    Maybe I missed that instruction somewhere, but had to figure it out on my lonesome.

  12. Mad Doc MacRae says:

    I got it to work by signing in with my new Telltale account (email and password).

    Some parts were better than others. The earlier part seemed to have a little more HR charm than the latter, though there’s a pretty great Wolfenstein send-up. The ending is terribad but you get what you pay for…

  13. Nero says:

    I accept the gift. Thanks Telltale!

  14. Sly Boots says:

    I was one of the, possibly very few, people that bought all the Strong Bad games, and they were great fun. As a special treat, once they’d made them all, Telltale sent them to me on a DVD for free, which was nice.

    Anyway, thanks for the explanation as to why the website hasn’t been updated since October, cheers John.

    • qrter says:

      They do that DVD-sending thing for every game series. They started it on the first season of Sam & Max.

    • Sly Boots says:

      That’s a nice service. I haven’t heard anything for the Tales of Monkey Island series as yet, though.

  15. Brumisator says:

    I haven’t played episodes 2, 3 and 4, but this is way better than episode 1!

    Like, really good stuff, man!
    Like drugs, if drugs were videogames.

  16. invisiblejesus says:

    Like TCM said, the first ep is easily the worst. I thought it was OK, but only OK. The rest are great. Giving the last one away for free is a little odd, if for no other reason but that the very end seems like it wouldn’t be as funny if you didn’t play the first one. I’d have given away the battle of the bands ep if it was me. Oh well.

  17. Devan says:

    One of the brothers had a kid? I guess that explains it. Congrats to them – And congrats to us for getting a free SBCGFAP.

  18. Urthman says:

    My favorites were #4 and #5. #4 has this great premise that everything that happens is taking place while Strong Bad is filming (with various levels of cooperation from the other characters) a cheesy homemade action film. It’s very clever and funny and features my favorite evil henchman name ever: “KILLINGYOUGUY!” The way the various characters are portrayed as variously in-and-out of their movie character roles is quite well done and funny.

    In fact, I’m generally amazed at the virtuosity of Matt Chapman’s voice work. He can do the voice of any given character imitating any of the other characters so that both layers are recognizable.

    I also loved the parody pokemon/stratego game at the end of #2. Fun, a creative step away from the rest of the point-n-click adventure gameplay, and the individual character match ups were funny.

    I’m biased because I’m a big Strong Bad fan, but I enjoyed all of the games and don’t regret buying the whole series.

  19. Jayt says:

    I might add that you don’t have to sign up for the newsletter, just uncheck the box on signup.

  20. bill says:

    I realise that the first Eps are usually the worst, but giving away later Eps is really weird. They’ve given away several later Episodes of Sam & Max, but I’ve never tried any of them because I don’t want to jump in half way. It probably doesn’t matter, but there’s something about it that is more off-putting than appealing.

    If they’d given away the first Episodes I’d almost certainly have tried them.

    Maybe they should go back and remaster the early episodes, then release them for free/very cheap.

  21. Inigo says:

    I would kill for a Cheat Commandos game.

  22. Ginger Yellow says:

    Bill, Telltale’s games tend to take the word “episodic” seriously. There’s almost no important continuity between the Strongbad episodes, beyond a handful of jokes. There’s a bit more in Sam & Max, but even so, I played a few of them out of order and didn’t particularly regret it. So they might as well give away one of the best episodes, to encourage people to buy the others. The Monkey Island games have been the only ones where it really pays to play them in sequence.