As of December 16th, two more games are free to own for all Games with Gold members! Marlow Briggs and the Mask of Death is a humorous action game with a healthy dose of mini-games that make for an enjoyable game.
Back to the Future - 30th Anniversary Edition is a point-and-click adventure game from Telltale, and it does a fantastic job of converting the popular film franchise into a fun game. The game has its own story and plot so you won't just be plodding through the movie.
If you missed the games released on December 1st, Warhammer: End Times – Vermintide is still available until the end of the month and is a 4-player co-op game similar to Left 4 Dead. You can read our review here.
Available December 16 – January 15
Back to the Future: The Game is made by Telltale and is made up of five distinct episodes. It's a point-and-click adventure game set in a world that we all know and love (unless you're a teen!!!)
Normally in a Telltale game, there are many branching paths, and characters remember the choices you make (and they may even die because of them). You won't find any of that here, as following Marty and Doc as they go from past to present to future and back again would become a spaghetti-mess of intertwining dialogue paths if there were multiple paths.
The voice acting is excellent, with Christopher Lloyd voicing his character Doc and a good impressionist voicing Marty McFly. You'll also recognize lots of sounds from the movies, and when you couple this with all the lovely visuals and locations, it does a great job of recreating the atmosphere of the original films.
As you'd expect from a point-and-click adventure, there are many puzzles for you to overcome. They are based on the timeline you're currently in as well as your location which usually makes them fun.
You don't need to be a hardcore adventure fan to complete them either as they're not too challenging but if you do get stuck there is a handy hint system that will gradually unveil the answer the more you ask for hints. This allows you to progress at your own pace and prevents you from getting stuck (like I usually am!) and not being able to complete the game.
If you're a fan of the movies, then you should definitely play this game. If you've never heard of Back to the Future, then it's also worth checking out and may well be the catalyst that makes you take the time to watch the films too!
Available December 16 – December 31
If you were to take the most over-the-top action films, sew them all together and make it into a game, you'd create Marlow Briggs and the Mask of Death.
It's a tongue-in-cheek hack-and-slash game with some shooting elements as well as a pinch of top-down blasting. You play as... Marlow Briggs if you haven't guessed already, who was a deceased fireman that has now been brought back to life by a nefarious Mayan mask.
As with all the best plot lines, your girlfriend has been kidnapped by “The Bad Guy, ” and you're off to rescue her as well as save the world a couple of times along the way.
The main meat of the game has you cleaving through hordes of enemies in true Gods of War fashion, with timed combos making your attacks more powerful. You'll also find weapons along the way that will improve your damage and help keep the combat feeling fresh.
The banter between the possessed mask and Marlow is a big reason why I like this game. Marlow will often make comments about the absurdity of his situation (the kind that player characters usually have to deal with in many games).
And the Mask will continually poke Marlow with a cynical sarcasm that berates him for stupidity and death. You might find yourself intentionally getting killed just to see what the Mask will say.
There are many unique levels that help break up the combat, and you'll have to experience them yourself as I won't spoil it and there are way too many to name!
If you're in doubt about how crazy and creative this game is, just wait until the “Upside Down Helicopter ride.” I've never seen this in a game before. I'd also love to see a film franchise based on Marlow Briggs, as audiences would love it!