Greed, for the lack of a better word, is bad. You want evidence? I'll give it to you. Larry: Magna Cum Laude and Leisure Suit Larry: Box Office Bust.
3D sequels of old adventure games have a tendency to be bad, but these two games raised the scale (or lowered it). Let's check them out.
Leisure Suit Larry franchise was a huge hit back in the days, when adventure games were one of the most popular game genres out there.
Leisure Suit Larry, the main protagonist was a funny, bald, 40 something blue-eyed dude, with a big nose and a big... appetite for women. The games made Al Lowe, the author of the series, one of THE game designers of that time.
The last game, Love for Sail, was released in 1996, so we had to wait untill 2004 for a new Leisure Suit Larry game, and boy did we get it.
In Larry: Magna Cum Laude you actually play with Larry’s nephew. As it usually goes in families, the apple does not land far from the tree and Larry’s nephew, named Larry Lovage (they’ve picked a very original name for him, didn’t they?) is remarkably similar to his uncle both in appearance and character.
Larry Lovage is a student at a university and if you think about it, that’s the perfect environment for Leisure Suit Larry game. The potential there was huge and too bad they didn’t go all the way to use it… far from it. He’s trying to get on a dating show, but first he has to prove himself to the hostess of the show by seducing women on the campus.
What made the original games so good were clever, funny, toilet humor like dialogues. It made fun from stereotypes in a very clever, yet at the same time dirty and simple way.
Larry: Magna Cum Laude is comprised of only free browsing through the campus and playing mini games in an attempt to get laid. Graphics are bad, dialogues are not funny, the whole setting just reminds you of a bad, we-all-know-em, generic teenage movies.
You could find some value in it, but I’d rather recommend Leisure Suit Larry: Reloaded or any of the Original Leisure Suit Larry games, preferably Love for Sail. You’ll have more fun playing them for sure.
If Magna Cum Laude didn’t convince you greed is bad, Leisure Suit Larry: Box Office Bust will. This game has nothing in common with the originals. Graphics and design are bad, gameplay is even worse. Camera angle jumps around and it’s annoying beyond description.
Conversations in the game don’t make sense. You have 4 answers available and if you pick the wrong one, you just click on the other. Wrong again? Well, actually, you can click them all and eventually you’re bound to get one right.
Once again, the main character is Larry Lovage. Our bellowed Larry Laffer calls his nephew and asks him for assistance in running his film studio. Plus, it seems there is a mole in studios from the competition, who needs to be discovered.
There’s no funny, semi-classy seducing of women, toilet humor or making fun of stereotypes. It’s just one huge mess, and its only connection with the originals is the name Leisure Suit Larry.
There is no surprise the reception for Leisure Suit Larry: Box Office Bust was so negative. Once again I urge you to play Love for Sail from 1996. Cartoonish graphics aged really well and look nice even by today’s standards. Or grab yourself an addition of Leisure Suit Larry: Reloaded. You’ll have much more fun.
If I still haven't convince you, you can get the games here: