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Title: Maniac Mansion (2nd Review)
Author:Jaleco/ Lucasarts
Rom Player: nester
Reviewer: Skulhedface

Synopsis: There's something going on in Suburbia. Either something's in the water, or a slimy purple meteorite has warped the minds of Dr. Fred and family.
Dr. Fred has kidnapped Dave's girlfriend Sandy! And I think he plans on doing bad things to her (one would think, since he is DR. Fred, that it revolves around elective brain surgery, or maybe the Purple Meteor, being an alien, needs a doctor to assist him to ready the unforgiving anal probe)

Your job in Maniac Mansion is to infiltrate the mansion, rescue Dave's girlfriend, and get rid of that meteor before he can get away to Alabama and give out more anal probes.
You take on the role of Dave, typical high school student extraordinaire, and two of his friends. In this game, you guide Dave and company to break the law by breaking and entering the mansion and burglary by all the little knick-knacks and consumables and important items essential to your quest. The format of this game is point and click, and it resembles a "Choose Your Own Adventure" book (try taking the hamster, nuking it in the microwave, giving it back to Weird Ed and see what happens.) You guide your kids around the mansion and use their special skills to end the Meteor Menace. Except for Dave. His special skill is he has none. What a waste. But your selectable characters include a surfer, a nerdy genius, a photographer, a writer and TWO musicians.
Graphics are fine for what they are, but a bit simple at times (Who knew that monotone square was a can of Pepsi before you clicked on it?) But at least you can more or less tell what things are. Just for giggles, I'm gonna add +1 on my graphics score, because this is the first game I've seen that has a toilet in it (Check Cousin Ted's bathroom out, and I recommend you lift the weights on the way out)
Music is excellent, each kid having his own "theme". There is a lot of variation between themes, but you just might want to gouge your eardrums if you listen to Razor's for too long. I don't think 8-bit sound can justify a punk rock song.
Gameplay is EXCELLENT. You more or less choose your own destiny, and the kids all have their own special skills. Plus, you have to use your brain to access certain parts of the house (try getting into Edna's bedroom!) A very rewarding experience.

Best Cheats: No cheats, but a few hints:

Unless you hooked the power back up and played the video machines in Dr. Fred's arcade, the password to the inner door in the dungeon will ALWAYS be 0000.

Do NOT pick Jeff. Jeff's only skill is his ability to fix the phone. Bernard can do it too, and he is far more valuable (and then he got greedy, changing his name to Bill Gates....)

Razor and Syd have the EXACT same skill. If you want a musician in your party, your choice boils down to "Do I want this gothic looking dude in the shades, or this punk rock chick with the god damn annoying theme song?"

If you get caught and thrown in the dungeon, if there is more than one kid in there, there is a way out. Look for a loose brick.

Getting caught in the dungeon is one thing, but getting killed is another. Once you're DEAD, there's no coming back. But you can check out your own grave back where the game started.

Game Play: 10
Graphics: 7
Music/Sound: 6
Originality: 10
Overall Rating: 9

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