Strong Bad Episode 4: Dangeresque 3 (WiiWare)

Posted by Jim Cook, Jul 02, 2009 08:22

After Baddest of the Bands, I noticed a trend in the episodes I’d seen thus far. Episode 1 was solid but had some mistakes, while the second episode improved on them. Episode 3 had some significant issues, but this one more than makes up for it. The idea behind this episode in the point and click adventure series is that Strong Bad is filming the titular Dangeresque 3; he thinks it’s going to be an awesome action movie featuring himself as a corrupt, profit-oriented loose-cannon cop on the edge. It ends up being a hilarious tribute to the worst cliches in the genre, a fantastic spoof of several decades worth of spy thrillers, action movies, and related films.

This seems to be the entire point of Dangeresque 3, as it intentionally alternates between being a well done parody and going into ’so bad it’s good’ territory as far as storytelling goes; familiar scene ideas are skewered by bad improv acting, special effects failures, and so on. While you’re technically acting out the film’s script, the core gameplay remains the same: Strong Bad goes from place to place, speaking to people to gather clues and pick up items for use in solving puzzles. It’s a formula that works, so why change it? Fortunately, the puzzles this time around are mostly well written and I only had to get little nudges in the right direction on the two times I got stuck. A few are too easy, but most are ’just right’ and their solutions should come to you with a few minutes of thought.

Like most of the previous episodes, the main story will last you about three hours, give or take a little depending on how quickly you figure out some puzzles. You can stretch that out some by going after various hidden objects and playing a simple retrogame, of course. But the real treat here is the music; while Strong Bad sometimes just hums out special effects and his bad attempts at tense B-movie music, often you get actual music to back this up and it really hits this film genre’s high (low?) points, setting the mood with deep, funky beats. It’s this kind of presentation that really pushes this episode to a level the previous ones just barely came short of, giving a very coherent theme to its humor and just plain feeling right.

There’s really only so much to say for each episode, of course. They all play alike in their core features, so the only real concerns are how well Dangeresque 3’s puzzles are written, how funny it is, and how well the music and graphics carry the theme. I’m glad to say that this one improves on the previous ones in just about every way, and justifies its 1000 Wii Point price tag. And if you’re a fan of the movie genres it’s poking fun at, this comes doubly recommended; it really is a loving nod to bad action films of the previous decades and will definitely keep you laughing.

Also, Strong Bad wields a Nunchuk Gun in this episode. Yes.

For more video game reviews on this and many others head to Game Rankings

Our Rating for Strong Bad Episode 4: Dangeresque 3 (WiiWare)
6.5 Replay
It has most of the same extras the other episodes do; a basic retrogame, hidden costume pieces, collectible items, etc.
8.0 Graphics
The visuals remain true to the series, and cover a wide variety of locations and ideas. They even did an ironically good job of portraying bad post-production editing!
9.5 Sound
Several genuinely laugh-out-loud lines are backed up by some really nice music that pays tribute to 70s and 80s b-movies.
9.0 Gameplay
Excellent puzzles and good writing work together with the graphics and sound to let you play through a movie that is intentionally so bad, it’s good.
0.1 Multiplayer/Online Content
Not applicable, this is a single-player game only.
9.0 Overall
A great example of running with a theme for an episode and making the most of it; fans of Strong Bad, cheesy action films, and/or point and click adventures will be delighted.

Rating: 0.0, votes: 0

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