(Note: This game contains some mature content and is not the kind of game that should be shared with the little ones. Also, if you have a particularly uptight employer, this game may not be safe for work. But then, if your boss is really that bad, Freecell probably isn't safe for work either. You have been warned.)
Life is full of surprises, even if you happen to be a specimen of male perfection with a penchant for tuxedo tops and a nice breeze around all points south. For instance, one moment you are doing what you were meant to do, nay, born to do, in gracing the ladies with the greatest gift anyone could possibly bestow upon them (that would be yourself), and the next you are hauled in front of the leaders of the free world and tasked with putting a stop to an evil organization known only as "The Sisterhood."
Just as you are about to get over that nasty little surprise, you come to find out that your father, the very man who taught you the beautiful and wondrous art of being a gigolo, has maintained a super secret spy operations center in the very same room in which he trained you in the ways of seduction.
There is, of course, only one way to cope with all of this. For most of us, that would be to promptly sit in a corner and go happily insane. But for those proud few who have earned the right to call themselves gigolo, the only thing for them to do is strap on their jetpacks and head straight into harm's way.
And thus the stage is set for the new Adult Swim point-and-click adventure, Gigolo Assassin, brought to us by London based Mediatonic, the same folks who put together the insanely awesome Alan Probe: Amateur Surgeon series. The big difference between their first [adult swim] title and this new venture is that you trade mouse-based dexterity obstacles in favor of good old fashioned adventure game puzzle solving.
In this first installment of a three part series, you must guide your gigolo (I named mine Bruce Digelow) through an isolated tropical island in order to put a stop to the sinister goings on of one Alana Lamia. In so doing you will meet an assortment of unique (and decidedly non-unique) characters as well as solve item based puzzles much along the same vein as the old Sierra and Lucas Arts point-and-click adventures.
Can you put a stop to the diabolical plans of The Sisterhood with nothing but a well-tailored dinner jacket and a sweet banana hammock? The world may just well depend upon it!
Analysis: For someone who cut his teeth on the exploits of Sam & Max and Larry Laffer, it just doesn't get much better than this. In fact, I was more than a little pleasantly surprised at just how well this game is put together.
Usually when I find an online point-and-click adventure, I get my hopes way up only to find myself sadly unfulfilled ten or twenty minutes later. Not so with the Gigolo Assassin.
While the story is not exactly award winning material, at the very least Gigolo takes the time to tell it; using the many interactions and developments to put its dark and innuendo riddled humor on full display.
Meanwhile, the puzzles posed to you throughout the course of the game aren't of the brain breaking variety that hardcore room escapers will no doubt crave, but they aren't so easy that they make you wonder what's the point of even having a puzzle there in the first place?
Indeed, while the humor is the central driving force of Gigolo Assassin, the puzzles play a perfect compliment. They are spaced just far enough to drive the plot from one point to the next without bogging you down with an inventory full of items and little clue as to what to do with them. Even better, just about every single puzzle and its solution are both logical and relevant. Those frustrating moments where you wonder how on Earth you were supposed to know you had to talk to a tree or wear a mop on your head or feed some guy a handful of prunes are thankfully done away with.
Adding to this are the aesthetics that should be happily familiar to Alan Probe veterans. The visuals look like they came from a children's book gone horribly wrong, and the music score just seems to fit right in, particularly the disco theme that adds just that right hint of sleaziness.
Indeed, I would have been hard pressed to point out anything bad to say about the game if it weren't for one glaring fault. Throughout the course of this game, you're going to have a lot of conversations and unfortunately you can only explore one conversation path at a time. This means that you have to start from the very beginning of every single conversation every time you want to pick a different query.
This seems to be a terribly unnecessary inconvenience considering that the norm for such dialogue sequences is to just go back to the last player prompt.
Outside of this, and perhaps a navigation system that can be at times a little finicky, this adventure should keep you well entertained for some time. And it's only the first episode!
Cheers to Paul, Marius, Illarion, Janine, Sam, Amber, and Yamishinigami for suggesting this one! =)