- Editor's Rating
- Features a fun, all-new narrative
- Outstanding voice acting
- iPad provides quick load times and comfortable controls
- Puzzles aren't very challenging
- Games are pretty short
- Numerous quirks and bugs
An episodic, point-and-click adventure game on the iPad, PC, Mac, and PS3, Back to the Future: Episodes One and Two are fun and enjoyable, but flawed and not particularly challenging.
Back to the Future is an episodic, point-and-click adventure game from developer Telltale Games that is available on the iPad, PC, Mac, and PS3. With each episode sold separately, they are available for the iPad at $7 apiece in the Apple App Store. Telltale has established themselves as the go-to company for adventure games (and they’re doing an excellent job of keeping the genre alive), but this is only one of a handful of titles that the developer has released on the iPad. So how do the first two episodes make the jump to a new and still relatively young platform?
Story and Performance
Back to the Future: The Game features an all-new, timeline-augmenting narrative that takes place in the Back to the Future universe, complete with classic protagonists Marty McFly and Dr. Emmett Brown. Taking place six months after the events of Back to the Future III, the game has you take control of Marty as he investigates the disappearance of Doc Brown. Once he finds out what exactly happened in the past that caused Brown to vanish, Marty must set out to tinker with the past to save the present. Needless to say, his tampering with history begins to affect the present in negative and unexpected ways, and after rescuing Doc, Marty has to worry about trying to set things right.
Just like in the movies, the story is a time-bending, hilarious joyride.
The story is an enjoyable, humorous experience to play through and the characters are lovable in that goofy, Telltale kind of way. I would venture to say that the story is probably one of the best parts of the game, as it takes on the beloved Back to the Future franchise and treats it with the respect and care that it deserves. Making an all-new narrative in an already well-established universe without bastardizing the franchise completely is a tough undertaking, but I think that, so far, Telltale has really tackled this project in excellent fashion.
Though I can’t speak to the smoothness of the PC, Mac, and PS3 versions of the game, I can safely say that the first episode for the iPad 2 is plagued with a fair amount of bugs and slowdown. Though it only took me approximately three hours to beat Episode One, it managed to crash on me three times, and many of the in-game cutscenes would chug and stutter. Episode Two was marginally better, with no lock-ups or crashes occurring, but stuttering sound and visuals still abounded. I can imagine the stuttering and slowdown is much worse on the original iPad due to that Apple tablet’s weaker processor.
Though the lag issues would suggest that, at times, the game might have been too intense for the software, it certainly didn’t reflect in the load times. Load times were infrequent and speedy, which helped keep the game moving at a comfortable pace, since gameplay was so rarely interrupted.