(PlayStation 3)

Game Review

Family Guy: Back to the Multiverse Review

Europe PAL Version

Posted by Greg Giddens

In what reality is this considered fun?

Games based on TV licenses don't have a great track record, but there's always the potential for something enjoyable to come out of them. Now it's Family Guy's turn, with the franchise's first PlayStation 3 title, Family Guy: Back to the Multiverse. Don't hold your breath for anything amazing, though.

The story begins with psychopathic toddler Stewie's equally insane half-brother, Bertram, building a device that allows him to visit other dimensions. Bertram's intentions are to gather an army across multiple universes in order to destroy Stewie. It's your job to chase him down, while exploring a variety of different worlds along the way. The tale fits in nicely with what little continuity the TV show has, and it feels like the premise for a lost episode that you can actually interact with. Unfortunately, the bland, uninteresting activities that you're forced to complete suck any enjoyment out of the otherwise enjoyable narrative.

Fetch quests are the order of the day, and crop up in various forms across every dimension you're forced to visit. They're repetitive and dull objectives from gaming's yesteryear, and invoke a peculiar nostalgic trip. Indeed, you'll be whisked away to the 90s with memories of bad licensed games flooding your noggin. It's a strange sensation, but one that emphasises the antiquated setup. Tasks such as fetch three random items and flick three switches become tiresome quickly, and barely tie into the overarching narrative and dialogue. It's the classic example of a passive, story-based experience failing to evolve into an enjoyable interactive adventure.

It's a real shame, as the Family Guy presentation and humour are all intact. The 3D models of your favourite animated family look a little jarring at first, but do fit in with Seth MacFarlane's artistic vision. Meanwhile, the full voice cast from the show are present to add authenticity, while the script has even been penned by the aforementioned series creator. The result is a great looking and sounding experience. The banter between the characters is excellent, and all of the actor's deliver their lines brilliantly. Running jokes from the series are frequent, such as Meg Griffin's apparent disgusting appearance and Peter Griffin's endless war against the giant chicken Ernie. But the pace does hinder the humour a bit. There are jokes that are often repeated because you're in the vicinity for too long. Furthermore, the more offensive material lingers and crosses the line from funny to distasteful. It undeniably captures the Family Guy personality, but fails to deliver it to you as successfully as its television counterpart.

When you're not completing fetch quests, you'll spend your time with Family Guy: Back to the Multiverse shooting anything that moves. The anthropomorphic dog Brian is equipped with traditional firearms, such as pistols, machine guns, and shotguns, while Stewie is packing laser guns, and more explosive weaponry. With your arsenal, you're prompted to mow down everyone that opposes you. Each dimension has its own primary foe, be it high-school jocks, giant chickens, or Amish people, who will attempt to hunt you down on sight.

Fortunately for you, your folly is brain dead cannon fodder. The third-person shooting is serviceable at range but becomes a frantic mess once the enemies get close. Death is a minor issue, though, as you're merely punished by the loss of currency. This can be easily regained by destroying some environmental objects.

The currency itself is used to buy upgrades and skins as you progress, but you're likely to have purchased everything long before the conclusion of the game. Considering it's a rather short journey in the first place, there's really not a lot worth getting excited about. At least there's the promise of competitive and co-operative multiplayer to hold your attention.

Competitive multiplayer allows up to four players to participate locally over four modes: Deathmatch, Multiverse Madness, Capture the Greased Up Deaf Guy, and Infiltration. The options are pretty predictable, but function well enough – it's a shame that the action's restricted to local play, though. Meanwhile, the story can be played co-operatively with up to two people, which helps to alleviate some of its repetitiveness.

Conclusion

Family Guy: Back to the Multiverse doesn't make the best use of its licence. The humour isn't as funny in this format, and the experience is padded by repetitive fetch quests. Fans of the show may derive some enjoyment out of the in-jokes and multiplayer, but everyone else should avoid at all costs.

Sponsored links by Taboola

More Stories

Game Trailer

User Comments (16)

Giddens

#3

Giddens said:

I'm quite fond of the show, which makes this disappointing game based on it all the more upsetting.

SuperNictendo

#4

SuperNictendo said:

Im somewhat fond of the show but now cringe at how distasteful it is...at any rate its still a shame this is a licensed game gone wrong again

Azikira

#5

Azikira said:

The show used to be funny back in the first two seasons, but it's just become mindless and obscenely violent to the point where I don't watch it.

hydeks

#8

hydeks said:

considering you don't seem like you like Family Guy at all, I'm not gonna listen to your review (sorry) but more so IGN'S, they gave it a 6/10, seems about right. European people will never understand stuff like Family Guy, it's North American humour :P

@MrNiceGuy Family Guy is WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY better than South Park :P

evildevil97

#9

evildevil97 said:

I prefer Family Guy to South Park. They have different comedic styles. That being said, this game looks like garbage. I'm more intrigued by South Park: Stick of Truth.

The reality is, licensed games are rarely good anymore.

Kage_88

#10

Kage_88 said:

I enjoy Family Guy - much more so when I stopped obsessing over how 'bad' it is, and just enjoyed it for what it was - a silly cartoon.

But I prefer South Park over any of Seth McFarlane's shows.

Oh, and crappy game is crappy.

FuzzyYellowBalls

#11

FuzzyYellowBalls said:

Family Guy, South Park, The Simpson, Looney Tunes, every Pixar film... Why the arguing?! They're all great animation! They all have their own style. It's not about which is better, because it's impossible to judge. Enjoy them for what they are: cartoons.

But about this game: Hmm, games developed after television shows seem to be about as good as games developed after movies. This game had so much potential. Heck, the people who work on the show already did 80% of the work with creating the Family Guy world...

SuperKMxAdmin

#14

SuperKMx said:

@hydeks You don't need to be European to know that an entire Conway Twitty song halfway through a show is in no way funny, neither is eight minutes of Peter holding his knee and going "Ooh! Aah!" because he fell over.

The show had a rough couple of seasons, but is on the way back again.

And there's no such thing as "North American Humour", to be honest. Pretty much every comedy series you have over there in the States that hits it big, ends up on our screens anyway. We get it just fine.

theblackdragonAdmin

#15

theblackdragon said:

@KenB: actually, I would disagree with you regarding 'north american humor' if we're only going by comedy series-es that make it across the pond from either side (i can't speak for shows that don't make it over here any more than you can for ones that don't make it over there, I'm sure). it's not that either side can't get the joke(s) involved, it's that they might take a bit more time to sink in or just come off too flat to really be as amusing as they could perhaps be to someone who had grown up in that particular culture at times, especially when it comes to extreme examples of our culture's humor like South Park and Family Guy. What about comedy shows that have had iterations on both sides, like The Office and Whose Line is it Anyway? Whose Line in particular, I love love love both iterations and was ecstatic to see Colin and Ryan in action again, but watching both one after the other you can really see the differences in the players'/comedians' performances (and the games chosen, and the comedic choices made) due to the differences in host and audience.

Mind you, I'm not commenting on the review at hand at all; I'm sorry for going so far off on a tangent but I was honestly shocked to see someone make that particular statement. Greg is as qualified to say he's a fan of Family Guy as I am to say I'm a fan of Doc Martin and Top Gear, there's no reason for someone from one culture to not understand or 'get' a given joke so long as we keep open minds and allow ourselves to see the humor (even when it comes to the absurd eight-minute sessions of Peter holding his knee and going 'ow! sss' over and over, haha), but for someone to dismiss the idea that 'American humor' exists would be like for me to dismiss the idea that 'British humor' exists. They're both very real things.

sash

#16

sash said:

Awsome! family guy YEEEEEEEEEEH!! south park IWWWWWWWE!!!!!!!!!

@Swiket ya you wish

@MrNiceGuy in your dreams hahahahahahhahahahahah!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Leave A Comment

Hold on there, you need to login to post a comment...