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Back to the Future The Game: Episode 5: Outatime

Score: 92%
ESRB: Not Rated
Publisher: Telltale Games
Developer: Telltale Games
Media: Download/1
Players: 1
Genre: Adventure

Graphics & Sound:

Back to the Future The Game: Episode 5: Outatime starts off with Marty and the Doc on the outs. While Marty is trying to restore his timeline, the Doc Brown from the odd Citizen Brown offshoot timeline doesn't feel all that great about erasing his entire history.

Visually, the game sticks to the style of the rest of the series. However, Outatime introduces a couple of new locations, which is nice since Hill Valley's town center has been the main backdrop for most of the games. Granted, it occupied several different time periods, but it was the same basic layout.

Once again, Back to the Future: The Game does a good job with sound. While the iconic music plays during the important parts, the voice talent continues doing a pretty steady job of carrying the game's story. This time around, Michael J. Fox rejoins the voice cast and guest stars in a couple of roles. One is the now-grown-up William McFly, whom we saw as a baby in Back to the Future: Part III, and is the father of Artie. As for the other voice, well, that's a nice surprise for after you've beaten the game.


Back to the Future The Game: Episode 5: Outatime wraps up the story arc that started with Doc Brown going back into the 1930s for some unknown reason. While there have been many twists and turns along the way, Marty is intent on fixing the changes he introduced into the time stream.

The main problem was, of course, accidentally getting young Emmett sidetracked in his goal to become an inventor, which set him on course to marry Edna Strickland. In the last game, Marty had gotten young Edna to break up with young Emmett, but in Outatime, he must solidify the young inventor's passion for science. This means he has to make sure the not-quite-Doc's demonstration at the science fair goes off without any problems.

Too bad for him that there is already trouble in the works by the time he gets to the show. It seems Edna, along with "Carl Sagan" (the fake name the older Doc goes by in this time period), have caused Emmett's booth to be shut down. Naturally, its all up to Marty to not only get the booth reopened, but also to find Emmett and get him to perform. While that comprises a vast majority of this episode, getting Emmett to the stage isn't the end of their problems, and what happens afterwards is a doozy.


Back to the Future The Game: Episode 5: Outatime isn't the toughest of the BttF episodes, but it does throw a lot of different puzzles at the player; it took me quite a few hours to work my way through. While I don't recall any real difficult puzzles in Outatime, there were a few that slowed me down briefly. Most experienced adventure gamers should have no problems making their way to the end of this last chapter, while the more casual gamer might have to use the built-in hint system a bit more in order to figure out some of the slightly trickier obstacles.

Game Mechanics:

Back to the Future The Game: Episode 5: Outatime does a good job of taking old tried-and-true puzzle types and putting a different spin on them in order to make them feel new and original. One good example of this is a variant on the standard dialogue tree puzzle. Without giving away too much, this puzzle has you talking to one of the other characters as if you were a different character. Your goal is to make your conversation buddy incriminate him or herself. The game presents this in an interesting manner since, obviously, you can't impersonate another character when you are face-to-face with the person you are trying to trick, so you not only have to guide the conversation correctly, but you must do so in a manner that will keep your true identity safe. Add on the need to somehow record this conversation and present it to the proper persons and you have something that is more than your basic dialogue-based puzzle.

That's not to say that Outatime doesn't have any puzzles that are all but obvious repeats of past episodes. While past episodes had you sneaking around a still car in order to remain incognito and get the job done, this time around you will be on a hover board as the DeLorean speeds across some bumpy roads. While the goal of these two puzzles are slightly different, they are essentially the same as far as execution was concerned.

Overall, Outatime concludes the five-episode game series quite nicely and in a manner befitting the Back to the Future franchise. Of course, jumping in on the last episode is like reading the end of a book. You might know how it turns out, but without the journey that takes you there, there isn't much point to it. If you are interested at all, then start from the beginning. While not all of the parts are spectacular, the overall package is worth the price, especially with this very solid ending.

-J.R. Nip, GameVortex Communications
AKA Chris Meyer

Minimum System Requirements:

XP / Vista / Windows 7, 1.8 GHz Pentium 4 or equivalent, 2 GB RAM, ATI or Nvidia card w/ 256 MB RAM Video Card, Direct X 9.0c, Audio card required

Test System:

Windows 7 Ultimate, Intel i7 X980 3.33GHz, 12 GB RAM, Radeon HD 5870 Graphics Card, DirectX 9.0c

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