This review will be over before you know it.
Every so often you'll see a game and wonder what the developers were smoking when they drew up the designs. Take, for example, Visual Concept's Floigan Brothers. The name itself just sounds weird, like something Jerry Lewis would say. Of course, we all know names don't mean much (except when it comes to 'Attack of the Clones'- c'mon George, drugs are bad.). When it comes to gaming, what's on the inside is all that matters. So what's on the inside? Not much.
The game chronicles the mildly amusing adventures of the brothers Floigan - Moigle and Hoigle (try saying that ten times fast). Similar to Ren & Stimpy: Stimpy's Invention on the Genesis, you'll control one of two wacky characters that must work together in order to collect parts for a mystery machine.
Players take control of Hoigle and must endure what basically amounts to a load of mini-games in order to gain the pieces of the puzzle. Along the way, Hoigle will have to interact with his brother, playing games, insulting or fighting with him in order to change his moods for the task at hand. Need to raise the river? Than you'll need to insult Hoigle and make him cry. Need to get to that hard to reach place? Then just piss off your bro and have him smack you all the way up there. Rocket science, this ain't. Especially when there are icons and a group of "hint mice" to help you along the way.
The games you'll play are simple, straightforward, and occasionally annoying. Some include platform elements, but most of the time you'll be playing games like Tag, Hide & Seek, or Hot Potato. I haven't done stuff like that since I was 5. It was fun back then, but reliving those moments in a video game just doesn't have the same appeal. Besides, there aren't any girls to tease.
However, the game does have all the appeal of those classic Saturday morning cartoons. Hoigle and Moigle remind me of Spike and Chester from all of those great old Warner Bros. cartoons. They might not be laugh out loud funny, but their antics certainly are amusing.
The graphics fit the cartoon world perfectly. The game really captures the look and feel of an interactive cartoon . If there's one quality "genre" that the Dreamcast has down pat, it's the cartoon-style game.
The sound is also done extremely well. Both the sound effects and the voice actors come from grade "A" stock with all the quality of the classics. I don't really see how they could have done any better in this department, so hats off to the sound monkeys.
The game's greatest drawback comes in the form of length and replay value. The average gamer will take perhaps two hours to finish this game. If you know exactly what to do or if you're just really good, you could probably finish it in half that time. Floigan Brothers is by far the shortest game I have played in a long time. And just like the majority of adventure games, there really isn't any reason to play it a second time. Combine that with the total ease of gameplay and you've got one super-short experience. That's pretty sad considering we've heard about the coming of this game for a long time.
To its credit, Floigan Brothers includes an online option that allows for chatting and trading, but it's unlikely that the younger folk would really go online and somehow gain more fun from this mode.
The game is priced at an easy $20, but with only a few hours of play, Mr. Jackson may be too much. Two hour movies only cost about $8, so how about the same for a two hour game?
Floigan Brothers turns out to be a decent rental that just might give your 7 year old sibling something to do for a few hours. But unless you still get up early to watch Saturday morning cartoons, you should stay far, far away.