It’s the moment all you Strong Bad fans out there have been waiting for, and it’s not just the release of the latest Strong Bad title, but also the release of the cinematic epic that has been what this country has been waiting for: Dangeresque 3. Yes, it’s true: our hero Strong Bad, not having anything else to do, has decided to go ahead and finally dip his feet into the swirling eddies of Hollywood stardom to bring you Dangeresque 3. Telltale Games has helped to bring the dream of Strong Bad to life. So sit back, grab your primary snacking choice, and prepare to be introduced to the greatest movie experience of your life: Dangersque 3!
As with any high-caliber cinematic entertainment there has to be a gripping plot and a cast worthy of depicting it. The plot of Dangersque 3 runs as follows: Cutesy Buttons (as played by Marzipan) wants to hire Dangersque (Strong Bad) and his partners Renaldo (Coach Z) and Dangeresque Too (Homestar) to find the secret formula which will allow the rain forest to grow again. Arrayed against this formidable team is the underhanded Perducci (The King of Town), his bulky associate Killyouguy (Strong Mad) and a mysterious individual behind the plot who cannot be revealed as we’re out of parenthesis. Nonetheless, however, it will be a difficult challenge for the Dangerseque team as they travel the world to save first the rainforest and, indeed, the world.
Dangeresque 3 is a new twist for the game in many ways, not just because of the Lewis Carroll-esque approach of playing a game that’s a movie which takes place in a game, but also because of Telltale’s choice to give you puzzles where there’s more of an emphasis on the player figuring things out for themselves rather then just trying everything to see what works. It does fit into the feel of the movie/game, which is an added bonus, but it’s also refreshing to be able to be able to truly think out puzzles without the game holding your hand. By and large this shift in the puzzle system works well, with the game usually giving you a hint and then stepping back to let you take over, but sometimes the game steps too far back and leaves you with a clear sense of the “what” of the solution, but very little idea as to the “how.” For people who like to think their way through problems, however, there will be a lot to like about Dangeresque 3.
Not that there won’t be a lot for fans of the previous game to like, however, as that classic Homestar Runner humor returns at full stride. There is the patently bad dialog of the wanna be actors from Free Town, USA, who frequently break the 4th wall or let their lines spill out over the floor. Coach Z’s character, Renaldo, continues to state that he’s got two weeks to retirement and that he’s -certain- that he’s not gonna get killed off in some suddenly fatal way anytime before then. Keep holding on to the dream, brother. The visual gags in the game are just as bad and, of course, just as funny as the writing is, for Dangeresque 3 is a game that features a dramatically low special effects budget. For example, there is a very moving, and terribly overacted, death scene in the middle of the game where you can see the recently deceased (and I won’t say who it is) move across the back of the shot.
All of this is backed up by the same ol’ simple control scheme that players of the Strong Bad series, or any other adventure game, will easily recognize. However, there is another twist to the choices you make: the selections you choose can mean either getting the facts you need … or not. This is especially true of the Good or Bad answer system which appeared in the last game, but in No. 4 it has a direct application as a nice answer will often result in characters agreeing to do what you need. This alters Dangeresque 3 from a simple point and click game into a game which bears a passing resemblance to a true RPG. Functionally it’s the same system but with an interesting twist.
In the end, Dangeresque 3 is another high-quality addition to the Strong Bad series of games by Telltale. It’s amusing, it’s a new twist to the series, and it has gameplay elements that help pull the player further into the game. Sometimes the puzzles do throw you a curveball, but by and large all puzzles can be worked out with just your head — and from time to time a piece of paper. For $8.95, you can’t beat the price.