It’s time to go back… again… as TellTale Games release episode 3 of the Back to the Future series on the iPad, Citizen Brown!
If you’ve been following Marty’s adventures so far you’ll know that he travelled back to 1931 to rescue Doc from imprisonment and almost certain death, then after arriving back to a compromised 1986 it was time to go back once more to fix the ever growing list of screw ups he made along the way. Now with Kid Tannen behind bars and everything seemingly resolved Marty heads back home again, only this time to wreck the Delorean on reentry and find that Hill Valley has over gone it’s most drastic change to date.
Doc Brown had formed a relationship with Edna Strickland back in 1931 and together with his genius and her desire for formality they have taken control of the Hill Valley. Shutting it off from the outside world and creating what they believe to be their ideal town of law-abiding robots (robots not meant in the literal sense). This Doc, better know as Citizen Brown, has no experience or memory of creating a time machine out of a Delorean so it’s up to Marty to find a way of getting him to fix things.
Episode 3 is by far the best of the series up to now and was the right time to focus on a different year, there is only so much you can do in 1931. We also see a much welcomed appearance from Jennifer Parker (Marty McFly’s girlfriend) voiced by Claudia Wells, who some may recall as the original Jennifer Parker actress. Yes! Jennifer Parker was played by two different actresses in the movies, go YouTube it!
The inclusion of Jennifer means we have a great sassy female role in the game that’s further strengthened by the fantastic voice-work of Claudia Wells proving she can keep up with standard of voice acting we’ve experienced so far for Doc and Marty. Jennifer’s look is different from what some may remember, now sporting black, purple and yellow hair and a denim 80′s rocker attire. Gone is the polite lady we remember from the movies, this Jennifer doesn’t agree with the rules and regulations instilled on Hill Valley and rebels at any given opportunity.
Performance wise the game still suffers from stutters and jerkiness, it’s blatant that the frame rate has been lowered to help performance but I’m not sure if it’s worse or better. The texture quality is my biggest gripe however, the in-game picture is nothing compared to it’s counter-part advertised in the appstore, see for yourself on the right for an example. As before, drops in performance are only in the original iPad version, iPad 2 owners will experience the same unflawed performance they have done with episode 1 and 2.
There isn’t much more I can say without repeating myself from the reviews on Episode 1 and Episode 2. Back to the Future Ep3 is by far the strongest in the series for the story, the ending and although the puzzles are still relatively easy, the change in scenery helps it feel more like a fresher experience. There are no major changes, or overhauls in performance and the control system still suffers from the same issues as it has done in the previous two episodes. So once again the game score remains the same. The present in 1986 may change for Marty as he travels back and forth through time, but I’m seeing a lot of the same problems here with each new episode.