Tony Tough 2 Preview
Tony Tough 2 - A Rake´s Progress is a prequel to Tony Tough and the Night of the Roasted Moths, which, it seems, has sold sufficiently well despite being slightly underrated by both the adventure community and reviewers. The developer is still Prograph Research from Italy, but the publishing situation has changed. Anaconda, a new label founded 6 months ago by the leading German adventure publisher, DTP, secured the worldwide rights. Tony Tough 2 is a milestone for Anaconda/DTP because it´s their first fully self-funded game and another step towards internationalization.
One of Anaconda´s proclaimed aims is using their increasing influence on developers to evangelize about avoiding well-known mistakes adventure games had for ages. The direction they´re heading towards can be seen in Tony Tough 2, which has some remarkable differences to the first game.
First of all the graphics have undergone a change. While the original had technically outdated, colorful low-res cartoon graphics; the 2nd game uses 3D characters in combination with more realistic backgrounds. The technical gizmos include everything one would expect from an adventure nowadays, from real-time shadows over a massive number of animations to dynamic weather. Anaconda quotes Edward Hopper as the main inspiration for the graphics style. Movies inspired by Mr Hopper´s work include Alfred Hitchcock´s Psycho and Ridley Scott´s Blade Runner, so they´re definitely in good company. The focus on a more realistic presentation is probably a good idea - despite its cartoon look Tony Tough was no game for kids.
Which leads to another difference: more streamlining. Tony Tough was criticized for unlogical puzzles and a slightly clumsy interface. The latter will now be standard point & click while the the former is a little more tricky. Tony's key features are jet black humor, scurrilious characters, and a weird storyline. How is it possible to make the puzzles more logical without sacrificing what made Tony unique? We´ll know the answer when the game ships. The only known quest solution so far indicates the improvements are subtle ...
As mentioned before, A Rake´s Progress is a prequel. It plays in a small town named Washington, New Mexico in 1953. The 13 year old Tony Tough stumbles into a mysterious story including a burglar, kidnapping and UFOs, gets involved into smaller and bigger catastrophies and finds out why he likes wigs and tapirs. The developers aren´t taking chances - Tony Tough 2 delivers no frills adventure gameplay without elements the adventure communty isn´t especially fond of. Look elsewhere if you want action or stealth elements.
A Rake´s Progress will be longer than most contemporary adventures. Anaconda promises 30 hours of challenging puzzles in 80 locations with more than 100 screens. Of course all dialogues will be voice acted.
Tony Tough 2 is scheduled for release in early 2006. Adventure fans can look forward to a promising title full of bizarre humor. It seems as if the prequel will improve just about every aspect of the first game while staying true to its roots. It will be a genre title with up-to-date technology and a lot of content.
Tony Tough 2 Links:
Tony Tough 2 homepage