Sam & Max To Enter The Devil’s Playhouse

A quick thought: DO NOT FEATURE THE BLOODY SODA POPPERS. NOT AT ALL.

Telltale has announced a third season of their popular Sam & Max episodic adventures. It’s called The Devil’s Playhouse, and from the trailer (below) appears to imbue the dog and rabbit heroes with psychic powers. Once again there’s to be five monthly episodes, the first due to appear on the 15th April.

You’ll note I did that “their popular… adventures” thing above. It’s my conciliatory way of acknowledging that lots of people enjoy them, even though I’ve found both previous series to be average at best. Their Strong Bad games? Now there they nailed it. But I think it’s very fair to say that the episodic adventure has been a consistent learning curve for the team, starting with the extremely dull Bone, and building up to the far more successful Strong Bad and Monkey Island games. There’s every reason for a miserable old git like me to look forward to this new collection of S&M adventures, and the trailer contains a few gags I enjoyed. Woo! It’s all about what I want! Talking of which, here it is:

So hopefully by this point they will acknowledge that PC gamers do not need their Sam & Max games to come in under 100MB, and therefore give us audio that doesn’t sound like it was recorded on jelly. Although it does look as though the characters will still look like shiny 3D renders, rather than either cartoons or furry creatures. I’d love it if it were one or the other. Wah wah, someone call me a wahmbulance. It’s looking good, isn’t it?

31 Comments

  1. lhzr says:

    s&m s2 was incredibly funny and had excellent puzzles. all in all it was better that the original s&m.
    dunno what more you could’ve wished for, mr walker. you played the whole series and you still came away unconvinced? sounds.. dubious, since there was more creativity in there than in the recent tales (which were also good, but not as funny and imaginative).

  2. Lambchops says:

    Yeah, I think the second season of Sam and Max is still my favourite bit of episodic work from Telltale (the Lair of the Leviathan episode of Tales of Monkey Island is my favourite all round episode though). While Tales had a more interesting arcing plot I just found Sam and Max that little bit more entertaining.

    I haven’t played Strongbad though, as I have no familiarity with the source material. Wallace and Gromit was a terrible mis step.

    So anyway, good news that they are doing another season, I’m looking forward to some more S&M . . . yeah . . . in the Devil’s playhouse . . . .man I’m glad no one is here to see this, I shudder to think what they think I’m up to.

  3. Malagate says:

    A Wahmbulance has been dispatched, the Wahamedics will be with you in in wahn hour, please assume the wahcovery position until then (lay down on a bed with your face buried in a pillow).

    Shiny 3D renders are always a bit weird to me though, what’s wrong with a Matt look?

  4. Rick says:

    If the new Sam & Max incorporates the lessons learned from Tales of Monkey Island in writing and design, we are onto a winner and an awesome game for deserving characters. I’ve recently replayed the original two seasons, and while they aren’t anywhere as bad as Mr. Walker made out in his PC Gamer reviews, they really don’t hit the quality notes that TTG has been hitting with Strong Bad and Tales of Monkey Island. Hopefully the Devil’s Playhouse will rectify that. And hopefully we won’t have any absolutely crap and annoying characters like Soda Poppers or babies on a tropical island.

  5. LeChuckie says:

    I unashamedly lap up anything from Telltale, anyone can see the flaws but I find the entertainment factor outweighs the shortcomings. The other great thing about Telltale is they are actively trying to improve upon their previous offerings. Which is great.

    As a self confessed Mr Walker fan too, I find his reluctance to warm to Telltale a bit baffling, Remembering all those years ago and that score you gave to Escape from Monkey Island. Which I did love, but 90%? Really?

    • lhzr says:

      90%? hah, take that MI fans.

    • Wulf says:

      Bwhahahaha.

      It’s funny because Tales is obviously leagues ahead of Escape, and to be honest, considering humour and gameplay, even Sam & Max: Season 1 is ahead of Escape. Escape was okay, but it wasn’t really anything other than okay. I would’ve marked it more in the region of 60%, as an adventure to pass the time with.

      What really pleases me about Telltale though is how incredibly faithful they are to their source material, and how much they go out of their way to be so. Escape was just a story jury-rigged into the Monkey Island Universe, but it wasn’t a Monkey Island story, not at all, it was a story about property and law, but nothing else. Whereas Tales of Monkey Island tells an exceedingly fitting story.

      Though to be fair, I expect that Mr. Walker probably liked Tales, and he might not have taken to Sam & Max due to the IN YO FACE humour, which really isn’t for everyone (but I liked it).

    • lhzr says:

      @Wulf: if by IN YO FACE humour you mean the sort of jokes that make you laugh (as opposed to just smile, as it’s mostly the case with adventures), then yes, s&m s2 had exactly that.

      won’t judge mr walker’s taste based on his comments about s&m and his scoring of MI4 because, hey, some people don’t feel comfortable laughing, they just like to smile politely :)

  6. Lambchops says:

    Also just throwing this out there but does anyone else reckon it would be nice if Telltale tried to come up with an original series?

    They’ve done some great stuff with the franchises they’ve worked on but I reckon with the obviously talented creative team they have there they could come up with something really entertaining if they decided to make some entirely new lead characters.

    • Tang says:

      Yeah, I’d love them to come up with an original series. I was kinda hoping they would do that after Tales.

    • Rick says:

      They are supposed to be developing a new series, I believe they still have one more unannounced project under development, and there’s a good chance it might be TTG’s first original work.

  7. Tang says:

    I’m really looking forward to this one, I’m hoping they nail this one as well as the Tales of Monkey Island. Was a big fan of the first two episodic Sam and Max adventures, although admit they were finding their feet a bit during the first one.

    As for the Strongbad games, I tried the first one, but found it quite unfunny and dull… :/ I didn’t go through and play the rest because of that. Figured I just wasn’t in tune with the humour of the series.

    • Lambchops says:

      I should probably at least give Strongbad a shot sometime. After all what with the free episodes Telltale has chucked at me throughout the course of buying stuff from them I’ve now got episodes 1, 2 and 4 and have payed absolutely nothing for them!

  8. Reverend Speed says:

    Tales beats S&Ms02 by a country mile.

    And I thought S&Ms02 was splendid.

  9. Ellusion says:

    Still waiting for the seasons to drop a bit in price (360), then I’ll play through them yet again. Welcoming a third season, but they really need to pull their thumbs out and get this stuff out on Live. Strong Bad and Monkey Island especially.

  10. Miko says:

    I’m surprised anyone thought the Telltale Sam & Maxes left much to be desired. If anything, Tales of Monkey Island was a huge disappointment to me after having my expectations raised by Sam & Max, especially Season 2.

  11. Kroms says:

    Heh, I personally preferred Sam and Max Season Two to Strong Bad, but to each their own. I also think Monkey Island was effing great.

    So excited for this! I really admire how far their tech’s come.

  12. Tom OBedlam says:

    I really enjoy Sam and Max, though season 1 was admittedly rather rough. Conversely, I hated the Strong Bad episode that I played (8 bit is enough), it was far too easy and only the Stinkoman level actually made me laugh.

    But then that might just be me being a sucker for anything Sam and Max. “You certainly are an unfathomable well of something, Max”

  13. westyfield says:

    I’m feeling ill, and all this talk of S&M games is making me giggle. Thanks, internet. Thanks, mind. Sorry, internet.

  14. Rikard Peterson says:

    I’ve already pre-ordered, and have high hopes for this one.

  15. Premium User Badge

    Carra says:

    I had a lot of fun with the Sam & Max games, I have high hopes for this one.

    Interesting to see that according to the clip they removed the Wii and added the PS3 to their distribution.

  16. Shadrach says:

    I’m getting this, even if the humour isn’t always top-notch. S&M Adventures – Bring out the Gimp! Yeah… so no-one got the GLADOS reference in the trailer yet then?

    • Rick says:

      Chell’s treatment of GLaDOS will have been comparatively light-weight after Max gets his fluffy white paws on it.

    • CMP5 says:

      I was thinking more HAL than GLaDOS

  17. Wulf says:

    Well, since everyone else is doing it, I shall too (why not)!

    My favourites, in order of preference:

    – Tales of Monkey Island
    – Sam & Max: Season 2
    – Strong Bad’s Long-Titled Game
    – The Rest

    I really enjoyed the more subtle wit in the Monkey Island games, and their version of Guybrush. The IN YO FACE humour of Sam & Max is great, but I prefer ToMI’s.

  18. Punga Fruit says:

    I really wish they would change the dog’s voice to the original version’s one, which sounded very much like Dan Aykroyd, and very well accordingly ironically and ye whimsically. Just a genuinely perfect voiceover combination with the rabbit’s voiceover! I’d buy the series, IF THEY BRING BACK THE ORIGINAL DOG’S VOICEOVER!!! Otherwise it’s trully lost good 1/2 of its charm due to the dog’s voiceover…! I will never get over it! (I happened to played both previous CD-ROM based games with EXCELLENT VOICEOVERS!)

  19. Hmm-Hmm. says:

    Oh, nice.. it’s available for the mac. But yeah, I still won’t buy it. It’s something to do with the 3D models, I guess. The way it looks just really puts me off of it.

  20. A-Scale says:

    What could psychic powers mean as a gameplay element?

  21. Thants says:

    It’s so ugly. Does it have to be so ugly? I know I should care about more than looks but… would it kill them to hire an artist? This looks like one of my amateur 3D animations from the late nineties.

  22. Bad Asp says:

    I second that, and I want the rabbity thing’s original voice actor back too!

    Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeease? Pretty please, with sugar on top?