Leisure Suit Larry: Reloaded review
The Good:

Lush 2D visuals; superb soundtrack and brilliant voiceovers; dry, witty humour and bucket loads of adult innuendo; excellent gameplay design.

The Bad:

Very short, with not much new content; grinding for money is a nuisance; certain visual elements could use more polish.

Our Verdict:

It doesn’t last long and its humour certainly won’t be for everyone, but Leisure Suit Larry: Reloaded is an almost perfect remake that is short, sweet and loads of fun.

If there ever was an adventure game that needed no introduction, Leisure Suit Larry in the Land of the Lounge Lizards is that game. Now more than 25 years after its initial release, Leisure Suit Larry: Reloaded arrives as a remake of the famous (or should I say infamous) 1987 game. It's a high definition update of the first game in the franchise, but it doesn't simply give the game a new coat a paint. Instead, it also adds new plot twists, jokes, puzzles and encounters whilst retaining the same flavour and remaining true to the original story of its beloved predecessor. Alas, like its protagonist, the enhanced version remains very, very short.

For the uninitiated, Larry Laffer is a traveling software salesman who at the tender age of 40 still lives with his mother, who also happens to be the proud keeper of his virginity. Hopeless in the art of love, there is no one who knows this better than poor old Larry himself. Sick and tired of his predicament and his mother’s knitted sweaters, Larry fishes through his closet for his old leisure suit and sets off to the town of Lost Wages to find his manhood and meet the woman of his dreams. Unfortunately, in most women’s eyes Larry is not exactly the catch of the day, so he will need to use all his wit and tenacity if he’s to succeed. So look out, Lost Wages – it’s going to be a crazy night!

Larry starts out in front of a seedy bar called Lefty’s in a run-down part of the city. Inside Lefty’s, Larry begins his adventure for true love (or at least something along those lines), but eventually his journey will take him to such places as the hotel casino called the Caesar’s Phallus, a wedding chapel by the name of Weddin' Ready!, a not-so-convenient convenience store called the Come-N-Go and a retro-themed disco called Studio 69. The original '80s version of the game didn’t have many scenes to explore, and you’ll find that true of this remake also. There are a few new areas but they are largely built into the existing framework rather than creating whole new buildings or locations. A few places allow you to walk to the next screen over if it happens to be adjacent, but you’ll find yourself hailing a cab more often than not to jump between scenes.

One challenge Larry faces is a limited supply of money. He starts off with about $94 in his wallet and will need much more in order to pay for taxis, drinks and other things required to progress. Since there’s no honest way to earn cash, Larry will have to turn to one of the many slot machines in Lost Wages to boost his spending money for the evening. This is a particularly tricky part of the game, as chances are many players will end up losing all their money. If you do go broke, all you need to do is walk out onto the street for a brief comedic interaction with a friendly bum, who will hand over $10 to help you get back on your feet because he thinks you look worse off than he is. In order to avoid spending hours simply trying your luck against the one-armed bandit, strategic use of the save and load functions here goes a long way toward attaining your goal (essentially the same technique that everyone used the first time around).

The crux of the game, however, is to help Larry find all the clues and accessories he needs in order to impress and seduce ladies that capture his interest (which is almost all of them). Not that Larry has much success in this area, as most of the gags are set up for Larry to fail, and the jokes often revel in his futility. Larry is an awkward character who lacks any natural sense of style or suaveness, but he has a devil-may-care attitude due to his sheer desperation. The women are generally portrayed as glamorous beauties that are more intelligent, craftier and more empowered than Larry will ever be. With the exception of one early and one late encounter, all of his interactions with the main female characters tend to leave Larry looking bad.

This may be a problem for the protagonist, but it's good for players, as Larry's hopelessness is depicted rather colourfully for our amusement, and there is a degree of empathy that can be felt for his character, at least by anyone who’s ever struggled with the opposite sex or just been on a bad date. The female cast include a rather funky-looking (and I mean that in a bad way) ‘lady of the night’, a woman of leisure residing in the local night club, a concierge, a diver who constantly swims with a whale called ‘Mr Wiggles’ in the casino aquarium, and finally Eve, who resides in the hotel penthouse suite and represents Larry’s ultimate goal.

LSL: Reloaded is relentless in its adult themes, presented in a vaguely Benny Hill-style of humour but with a lot more dry wit and sarcastic overtones. For the most part, sex is merely alluded to or censored away but never actually shown. In fact, the game is actually much tamer than its reputation suggests; most late night television shows probably have more gratuitous nudity and violence than Larry ever sees. But constant innuendo abounds, and there is a certain charm in taking a character who is so naïve and pathetic and sending him out on a do-or-die mission to rescue his love life from extinction, all the while being humiliated, teased and tortured in the process. This kind of approach enhances the experience, as it focuses more on Larry’s comical actions and state of mind than actually scoring with the women.

Two elements carried over from the original game are Larry’s incessant need for breath spray and death sequences. Larry will get constant reminders to freshen up if his breath begins to smell exceedingly bad. I’m not sure if this has any major impact on the gameplay, but it certainly provides some light humour during conversation with particular characters. When Larry does something stupid or tries something he shouldn’t, you'll be greeted with a rather amusing death sequence of some sort. The good news here is that should you get killed, you are quickly restored to the point just before you died and given another chance to avoid the same fate. Even better is that the majority of deaths are very funny to watch and usually end in a cutscene of Larry being re-born in an underground lab, much in the same fashion as Frankenstein, before being returned to the previous scene.

Continued on the next page...



AD Leisure Suit Larry: Reloaded can be purchased at:
Gamersgate   • GOG   • Apple App Store   • Amazon  

Game Info

Leisure Suit Larry: Reloaded

Platform:
Android, iPad, iPhone/iPod Touch, Mac, PC

Genre:
Comedy

Developer:
N-fusion Interactive


Game Page »

Digital June 27 2013 Replay Games

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Leisure Suit Larry: Reloaded

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User Score

Average based on 15 ratings

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About the Author
Bobski101's avatar
Rob Murrant
Staff Writer

Comments

GoT GoT
Aug 3, 2013

Good write up. That’s the most extensive LSL review ive read so far. Most are scathing, you seem to have enjoyed it.  Can’t see myself playing it still, even your positive review was not extrememly positive.

Bobski101 Bobski101
Aug 4, 2013

It is a great game! but I also felt it was important to highlight some of the weaker points, so people know what to expect and aren’t disappointed by what’s on offer. When you put it into context, this is a superb remake and a game made entirely for the fans of the series. Does that mean it will appeal to everyone? Well no, but I don’t think this game or it’s series has ever operated on that premise. If the game does appeal to you though, it’s certainly worth your time.

rtrooney rtrooney
Aug 4, 2013

I doubt this was worth 4/5 stars. It may be the greatest remake of a game ever. But I question whether the game was worth remaking. If Al Lowe and Josh Mandel would have asked me what game would I like to see them remake, the answer would have been FPFP. LSL1 was not a great game to begin with. Despite the higher quality everything, it is still not a great game.

Bobski101 Bobski101
Aug 4, 2013

Well… If you didn’t like the original game, there’s not much hope you will like the remake either, even with it’s improvements, the game formula is very similar. That said, Leisure Suit Larry was one of Sierra’s highest selling games of all time, so some people must have liked it…

Advie Advie
Aug 4, 2013

<Leisure Suit Larry was one of Sierra’s highest selling games of all time, so some people must of liked it…>
Means,  Games>PC>Adventure>Sierra ... yes it comes 2nd after than KQ ..
but in games (general) you will not find it even in the best 100

P.S:and let understand there a difference between being a LSL fan (boy) and telling things like it is.

Jackal Jackal
Aug 4, 2013

There’s an even bigger difference between telling it like it is and telling people who seem to need their opinions reaffirmed exactly what they want to hear.

Rob liked it, and explained why. That’s all that’s required of any reviewer.

Advie Advie
Aug 4, 2013

i always had problems with games that needed more praising ,Well so at the bright side that is the first time i get bothered by a game ( i think ) its overrated,

On the Review : its strange that i did not find one Review (including this one) commenting on how Larry is looking young when the game still suggesting (like the original ) he is at the age of 40.

I know right well that Al mentioned he will take care of Larry’s age (in the matter of remaking all the series/parts) to show differences for Larry’s age from a part to the other as he grows up, but someone missed to change the script (i guess) so it would go with Al’s vision of Larry’s new young look in the Land of the Lounge Lizards .

Whittling Willy
Aug 4, 2013

A great review—much more well-balanced than the one over at IGN (not saying too much perhaps). I will give this one a go when I have some cash again. My parents wouldn’t let me play this one when I was a wee sprout.

rtrooney: I am with you 100% on a Freddy Pharkas remake! It is amongst the most brilliant games I’ve played and an absolute joy for folks fond of wordplay. I haven’t laughed out loud so many times playing any other game. Although I’m a purist, I think the time-restraints could be removed in the remake without any detriment to gameplay. It’s well overdue for a new generation’s enjoyment.

rtrooney rtrooney
Aug 5, 2013

To Jakal - I think there is an inheirant problem in reviewing remakes. Is it the qualoity of the game that is being reviewed, or is it th quality of the remake? In this case Rob makes clear that many of the flaws in the original game still exist. And he goes on to describe the “quality” upgrades from the original.

The latter should be obvious. We’re living in an entirely different wolrd than we were 25 years ago. Would there even be a reason to remake LSL1 in its original pixilated form? Of course not.

So I’m confused. If the original game is not so hot, and the remake adds little. And the improvements lie almost solely within the realm of graphic upgrades, how is this a better game?

Rob states in the PROS: Lush 2D visuals; superb soundtrack and brilliant voiceovers; dry, witty humour and bucket loads of adult innuendo; excellent gameplay design.

I think everybody agrees with all but the latter.

Which brings me back to the question. If the game, itself, isn’t improved, is it the quality of the improvement being reviewd, or is it the game itself.

Jackal Jackal
Aug 5, 2013

The game itself has been improved: increased interaction and dialogue, new puzzles and locations, no more perma-deaths or dead ends, etc. Clearly if you disliked the original, these won’t be enough to make you suddenly like the remake. But if you did like the original, and obviously many did for it to spawn one of the most successful adventure franchises ever, it makes a pretty good game even better.

There is an inherent challenge in reviewing both older games and remakes, but your premise is flawed. This is a review of the game, not just the enhancements. The reviewer just happens to like it a lot more than you.

Our original LSL1 review got 3.5 stars (and that wasn’t back in 1987), so a slight increase over that is hardly a stretch.

Bobski101 Bobski101
Aug 5, 2013

@Advie - From the comments that are popping up, I’d say i’m telling it more like it is than anybody! If I had given a negative review and people disagreed, the situation would be the same.

If you happen to be focused on score cards, metacritic offers an average review score of 3.5 stars, half a star difference from our score.

Much of the review takes into account the very strong positives but also clearly outlines the pitfalls. I make no attempt to gloss over some of the games shortcomings, however I do believe the good far outweighs the bad and for those reasons I think it is deserving of a 4 Star rating.

+ Is it telling like it is, if you’re just repeating what others are saying or offering a safe review, that is in line with the average or what people expect? I’d call that safety in numbers…

@rtrooney - My assessment here isn’t a review of both games or a comparison, it’s based solely on the merits of LSL Reloaded alone. I haven’t reviewed it as a ‘remake’ , but considering the history of the game, I would be remiss not to mention that aspect. Also, as Jack has mentioned, the reworking of the game has significantly improved a great many areas, that go well beyond a mere facelift.


rtrooney rtrooney
Aug 5, 2013

We will agree to disagree as to whether the game, itself, has been improved. You think it has. I don’t. I think the game looks gorgeous. As do you. Despite the good looks, I think it is the same old LSL1. But, as you said in an earlier post, you have only played LSL7. If you never played LSL1 I’ve got to question your ctiticism of comments of those who have.

Advie Advie
Aug 5, 2013

< If I had given a negative review and people disagreed, the situation would be the same>
you don’t know that ! or even know enough to accuse me for being as such a follower , and i believe i am so far away from that picture , i can be all the bad things you would imagine just not that.
< Is it telling like it is, if you’re just repeating what others are saying or offering a safe review that’s in line with the average or what people expect? I’d call that safety in numbers…>
again the same accusation !,
you need to go through LSL Reloaded Thread here on AG forums to see how much i had my High ,Big and Great Hopes over LSLR and how it struck me disappointed more than anyone .. because i had seen too many (TOO MANY) potentials and chances lost with LSLR, that would effect, (will) the whole process of remaking the Series .. to an extend that might include not making them.

you need to check the forums to see more of that in more than 20 pages i went through there with all the arguments you can imagine about the Game even before anyone else ...
Plus, i am Big fan, A Backer , i had finished even the alpha demo a month before this release with all its glitches and still waited for the final release with all the same hope , played/finished it and all have changed then ..

and i as much i left disappointed i even kept my mouth shut for a while afraid to bring all my feelings into the LSL1 the 1st Adventure game i ever played which introduced me to the genre back at 1988 ..

i still have all the positive dreams about the next remakes (whenever they are made) but nothing will change this current disappointment .. i wot.

Jackal Jackal
Aug 5, 2013

Advie, he wasn’t accusing you of anything. If we score a game highly, someone accuses us of overrating. If we score a game low, someone complains we’re underrating. That’s just a fact of life for any review. He didn’t say it would be you complaining either way.

rtrooney, what on earth are you even arguing? I’ve yet to offer any opinion on LSLR whatsoever. I simply highlighted the demonstrable ways in which the game was improved in answer to your question. If you don’t think a game is already better simply by virtue of removing dead ends, more power to you.

nonax
Aug 5, 2013

It is said that Leisure suit Larry is available on Android.  However I can not find it in the play store. Could this be a regional limitation forbI am in the Netherlands, or is it not released yet?

darthmaul
Aug 5, 2013

Imo, remakes should not be praised or supported… They reek of laziness and reliving past glories of the developer, while being too incompetent to do something new.

I never understood why people would want to replay an old adventure game.  The puzzles are the same(even if they are a handful of new ones).  Play more than one genre people… then you won’t be desperate enough to have to replay the same game!

tomimt tomimt
Aug 5, 2013

@nonax: LSLR was pulled from Google Play because it had some sort of game halting bug, so Replay is fixing it before re-release.

WindowsNT
Aug 6, 2013

The game wasn’t worth a remake, but I got it on general principles.

Waiting for Alone in the Dark, Shadow of the Comet and Indiana Jones 4 remakes….

MoonBird MoonBird
Aug 6, 2013

darthmaul, It’s not desperation to replay an adventure. Far from it. You do know that people also read good books many times, altough they know the story already? In the same way, some games are just so wonderful that you have to play them again just for the mood and nostalgia, just to reawake some nice memories from times that are long gone. Also, I wonder the nessecity of having always something new and groundbreaking. I’m one of those who think that what isn’t broken, doesn’t need fixing. But i guess there are people who just don’t want to feel nostalgic and never want to look back, people who want things to progress and develop. That’s okay. There’s so many kind of people, and that’s richness. I just would like to wish for understanding towards those, who like to replay their games and go back in time.



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