Can you smell it, folks? That off-brand musk in the air and the echo of an awkward chuckle in the wind, you turn and you see it – the white suit, the slicked-back hair and, oh Jesus, no not you. Why did it have to be YOU? Larry Laffer’s back for the first time in so, so very long. This is Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry.

I poke in jest about running away from the ‘horrors’ of Leisure Suit Larry. The original games were adult humored, offensive, and so very of their time. The jokes haven’t aged well at all, and in later games, the series did seem to struggle some with moving with the times. The more recent Leisure Suit Larry games, starring Larry’s nephew Larry Lovage, are a prime example of that. The series is much beloved and loathed, and I sit more in the beloved category. I accept the games and their humor for what they were, I know those jokes are horrible and should never be repeated, but despite that, Leisure Suit Larry is a damn good series of narrative puzzle games. Does Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry live up to that? Yes. I believe it does.

The first item to note about Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry is how visually striking it is. This game is utterly stunning, with every location hand drawn and lovingly so. It’s busy and colorful and brings real life and vibrancy into this run-down town. The contrasting color palette helps illustrate a garish but appropriate tone for the places you visit, as well as complimentary character designs – no two people look the same. You’ll see from the screenshots I’ve included in this review alone how much detail has gone into each and every part of the places you visit.

Below is one of my favourite locations, but the whole game is truly a visual feast for the eyes – which isn’t always the best, given you do visit some utterly disgusting locations. But even then, it’s so well drawn you can’t not admire the clogged toilet in the corner.

Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry Review - n3rdabl3

Anyway, back to our good friend Larry. Before you can even get into the game itself, you have to prove your age. Standard stuff, no problem. But it doesn’t ask you for your date of birth, oh no, it tests you with trivia! Some of this I outright didn’t get, but I don’t think the game expects you to either. Whether you know it or not, the questions don’t change, so you can click your way through. It’s a fun little way to set the bar on the sort of humor you’re going to be faced with.

Once you’ve passed the test, there’s a fun little scene that I’ll leave you to see for yourself. You then kick off with Larry waking up in a strange place, calling out for his beau from presumably the last evening. He quickly realizes she isn’t there, nor is he actually in a bed anymore. A little bit of fumbling around in the dark and you quickly realize that Larry is far from some lovely lady’s bedroom, and is in fact in some stinky sewer room. Surprisingly unphased by such a strange place to wake up in, you help Larry find his way out of the sewer and in front of a place that’s a sight for sore eyes; Lefty’s Bar. But there’s also something strange too, it doesn’t look like exactly how it was when Larry left. He shakes it off, you head inside.

It’s your old pal Lefty himself who regales you with the truth. You’ve been asleep Cap– I mean Larry. It’s twenty-something-teen and the world has changed a whole lot since the 80s! But luckily for us, there’s little in terms of long exposition of how much exactly has changed. Through finding a high tech prototype PiPhone with AI companion Pi, Larry gets the rundown on what’s happened in the last few decades whilst riding in his first ever Uber – Sorry, Unter, there’re a whole lot of parodies in this and none of them are apologetic. After this, Larry is on the doorstep of Prune Incorporated, the shining erection of glass that towers over New Lost Wages. Prune is the creator of your PiPhone and tech giant to the masses, and as Larry hands the prototype back to Bill Jobs (also known as Bee Jay), Larry lays eyes on his conquest for the game.

It’s been the tradition that there’s the girl of Larry’s dreams in every game, this being no exception. This time it’s the lovely Faith Less, Bee Jay’s secretary. However, as with all of these games, there’s a catch. You don’t get the girl that easy, else what’s the point in all of this? No, Larry must earn himself 90 points on Timber, the app that changed the generation. Unsurprisingly, once Larry understands Timber’s purpose of hooking up and dating, he’s immediately into the idea.

Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry Review - n3rdabl3

Your quest is now set before you! Date your way through Timber to get to the top and get on that ever important date with Faith. From here the game opens up, and you get to meet the incredibly diverse cast of characters with a wonderfully tongue-in-cheek sense of humor. It’s a good satire of the world we live in, addressing things such as addiction to Instacrap, the ridiculousness of social media influencers like Becky Butter when they’re outside their bubble and in ‘the field’ and so much more.

Your PiPhone and the apps on it act as your menu containing; inventory, map and quest givers as you swipe left or right on those you think will help you earn those ever important points in Timber. It’s a beautifully simple to use system, but I have found that when combining items in the inventory with a touchpad rather than a mouse that the task can be a little cumbersome – but you can get around that easily enough.

In terms of actual gameplay, Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry is your standard point and click. You have to follow the story and explore all of the different dialogue options in order to try and win over the hearts and minds of the people you meet. It is also your standard point-and-click in the sense that it can be incredibly unforgiving if you miss out a single line of dialogue. I faced an issue where I spent a good three nights scratching my head, visiting all the locations and combining items, before I realized that I had missed out that nugget of gold in the one sentence I’d overlooked. That interaction then led to two brand new locations and multiple new characters being unlocked. Ouch.

Despite that, the game follows a nice flow of running back and forth completing tasks for the people you’re trying to win over. Larry’s forced to not just be a good lay but to be a good person. You see, Timber points aren’t scored through just one good night in the sack, but people will rate on a number of things from how decent a person you can prove yourself to be and how good your dates go – if you can even get on one in the first place, people’s standards are higher than you may think. This isn’t your regular meet and fuck, but then again this series has never been about that. Most of your tasks will be fetch-quests, but it works for what you’re trying to achieve.

Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry Review - n3rdabl3

Each character is fantastically crafted. I’ve already talked about the impact of the high quality of artwork, but even personality wise these characters are not at all stereotyped in the way you may expect given their appearance or what they do for a living. Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry does a fantastic job of acknowledging that people are more than caricatures they are trying to present. There’s a college student who moonlights as a cam girl to pay for her student loans, and a rocker in her forties who still wants to make it big on stage, not to mention the actually quite poignant owner of a sex shop who has to run a second business on the side in order to keep her passion for the store alive. Everyone is fleshed out in some way or form, and I think it’s in games like this where you can afford to spend the time doing that.

The voice acting for this game is also top notch. Larry’s voice is just the right level of nasal annoyance without being too grating where you don’t want to play any longer than ten minutes, and the rest of the cast have clearly put in the hours to create an engaging experience for the player. These characters almost feel strangely real in this alternate version of our near future, despite being intentionally over the top. You’ll hit landmark moments with characters you interact, and these are commemorated as video cutscenes that get uploaded to Instacrap, which you can revisit at any time on your phone. To some of these scenes, I can’t help but wonder if Larry understands the consequences of posting certain things publicly on the internet…

I touched on humor before, but to expand on that what I liked most about Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry is that it nails our generation in such a fun way that I couldn’t help but cackle at a number of jokes, almost all at millennials’ expense. What makes those jokes especially good is that they aren’t spiteful, yes they’re at our expense but they’re jokes we can easily laugh with and not get all uppity about it. I’m more than certain there will be those out there who will be offended by some of the humor, and to the type of people that I imagine would, I can’t help but wonder why they’re playing a Leisure Suit Larry game. They’ll expect to be offended, so will naturally jump on whatever they can find. I ask those who may be skeptical to go in with an open mind and be pleasantly surprised, I’ll admit myself that I had low expectations and thought I’d be met with some eye-rolling jokes that weren’t at all funny, but the folks at Crazy Bunch have done a fantastic job.

Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry Review - n3rdabl3

It’s total cheese, but it’s cheese I’ll gladly take with a side plate of crackers because all in all this game is fun. Leisure Suit Larry: Wet Dreams Don’t Dry touches on the nostalgia of what makes this such a beloved series, whilst also bringing it to a modern audience. It stays true to the Leisure Suit Larry series whilst also completely flipping it on its head.

I’d happily recommend this game to anyone who wants to play a relaxed point and click game with some tongue-in-cheek adult humour about a man in a disco suit bumbling his way through the minefield of 21st Century dating.

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