Sam and Max: Beyond Time and Space from Skunkape Games
Sam and Max: Beyond Time and Space is the next instalment in Skunkape Games’ remaster of the classic Sam and Max series from Telltale. Based on the comic books of the same name, this time the titular duo are going on even more bizarre adventures taking them into supernatural territory as they travel to the North Pole, battle with vampires and struggle to avert a zombie apocalypse.
Much like its predecessor, Beyond Space and Time starts in the office of the eponymous pair as yet another disaster finds its way to their door (well, their window in this case). This time a massive robotic titan is causing chaos on the street outside; Sam and Max immediately spring into action and the first challenge is to find a way to subdue this metallic menace. As usual, the game’s puzzles combine clever wordplay with an off the wall but intuitive kind of logic. Pop culture references abound from the outset, with a twist on the classic, Kirk-style “talk the AI to death” solution coming into play here.
Git Along, Little Doggy
One of the things I found a little problematic with Sam and Max Save the World was the sometimes plodding pace, particularly early on in the game. This has been remedied here with an action-packed opening and a speedy move to interesting new locations. These environments are full of interesting and often amusing items or hidden nooks to find. Every one will illicit some dialogue from Sam, Max or both. This dialogue follows the now well-established trend for this series of being either a somewhat surreal commentary on the absurdities of our world or just plain surreal.
As with the previous instalment, Beyond Time and Space is split across five chapters, each connected by various narrative threads but ultimately serving as an independent episode with its own threat and scenario. Sam and Max unravel mysteries within mysteries as they delve deeper into a widening threat. The first chapter features an out of control Santa and leans heavily into a rather festive theme.
The writing throughout is both characterful and amusing. Sam and Max make for a good leading pair and their dichotomised personalities provide wonderful contrasting takes on the many bizarre situations they find themselves facing. The calm acceptance with which they tend to greet the many insanities that come along is a giggle in of itself.
The visuals have enjoyed a substantial upgrade from the original game and this is leveraged well through the memorable environments that are realised throughout the adventure. Bright colours and vivid environments are the order of the day. This is backed up by a bouncy soundtrack that does a great job of supporting the levity and wackiness for which Sam and Max are known.
Sam and Max: Beyond Time and Space is another excellent entry in the series, continuing the adventures of the detective duo. Its puzzle and mini-games are relatively light in challenge, but they are engaging enough. If you don’t mind setting aside some time to explore every nook and cranny you’ll find plenty of good laughs and some fun references built into Beyond Time and Space’s world.
With witty writing, attractive design and an improved pace on its predecessor, Beyond Time and Space is a solid adventure title for anyone looking for some point and click nostalgia.
Check out the trailer:
Sam and Max: Beyond Time and Space – remastered – is available now on Steam, GoG, and Nintendo Switch