Armed and Delirious

12There is such a thing as too much weird.

The 90s was the decade when graphic adventures appeared, rose to greatness, then died under an avalanche of more engaging 3D action games. But everyone loves epic adventures like Monkey Island or Gabriel Knight. So how come there weren’t more of ’em? After all, isn’t it easier to create a 2D adventure game than a 3D shooter? Armed and Delirious, Sir-tech’s own point and click, proves that the answer might be no.

In Armed and Delirious, you play a character known as Granny, whose house and family are sucked into an alternate dimension by a yellow critter named the Evil Rabbit. This little misfortune doesn’t bother Granny at all, but she really gets her panties in a twist when she discovers that the Evil Rabbit has pilfered her prized cookbook. To dish out some revenge, she sets off in her magical flying washing machine to explore the fantastic worlds of the Rabbit.

The plot might sound engagingly weird, and it sort of is, but it was too abstract for me to follow. Characters say things that have nothing to do with the current situation. Things occur that are impossible to rationalize — a real feat in this bizarre world. The objects you have to use are out-of-place. And a good ninety percent of the puzzles don’t make any sense, or else require bucketloads of trial and error.

5This irreverent nonsense carries over to the interface, which is also full of self-proclaimed “wacked-out weirdness.” The lovable old Granny stores everything she picks up in her “Bra-ventory,” which can only be accessed with the TAB key (whatever happened to the right mouse button?), and a lot of puzzles require you to drag objects from one corner of the screen to the other, so you’ll have to click and drag on every object in a room to see if it’s mobile. This gets very tiresome.

But it’s the stupid puzzles that are the real nail in the coffin. In several instances, if you don’t act quickly enough, the game can turn into a no-win situation. For example, Granny has to get her bottle of suntan lotion back from a singing cow that’s lounging in her bathtub (don’t ask), but if the cow uses it all, you won’t be able to progress. Playing through the game without a walkthrough at hand is very hard. I couldn’t do it.

System Requirements: Pentium 90 MHz, 16 MB RAM, Win95

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