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Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude

Platform(s): PC
Genre: Adventure
Publisher: Sierra
Developer: High Voltage Software

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Xbox Preview - 'Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude'

by John Curtis on June 23, 2004 @ 2:45 a.m. PDT

Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude is the coming of age story about Larry Lovage, nephew of Larry Laffer, the series' original lovable loser. In Magna Cum Laude, Lovage starts as a pathetic loser enrolled at Community College who spends most of his time in his dorm room, or on campus striking out with women. After hearing about a reality TV dating show visiting his college campus, he resolves to revitalize his life and win. Over the course of the game, Larry sets out on an epic search for love (or its equivalent) and finds that things don't always go as planned.

Genre: Adventure
Publisher: Vivendi
Developer: High Voltage Software
Release Date: September 21, 2004

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College is tough for Larry - he's basically a pathetic loser who occasionally gets out and hits on chicks, but things always go horribly wrong. When a reality TV dating show comes to campus, Larry decides he's going to revitalize his life by winning the contest and proving once and for all that he can live up to the shining example set by his Old Uncle Larry.

Follow Larry's hilarious exploits and misadventures in the wackiest college story ever. Updated for the 21st century with 3D graphics, engaging real-time conversations, and a fully realized college campus, Larry is back to give gamers some lovin'. Remember, it's not about who you impress, but who you get to undress!

Leisure Suit Larry – Magna Cum Laude, is Sierra/Vivendi’s latest in the LSL series. Take on the roll of Larry Lovage, the nephew of the great Larry Laffer, who was featured in past LSL titles. Larry Lovage, a hormone filled, sex seeking student at Walnut Log Community College, unfortunately inherited some of his uncles less fine traits: he’s short, he’s awkward, and he’s not getting anywhere with the ladies. At least, he isn’t until you step in and take control, to help him become the campus pimp.

When the game starts, Larry is walking through campus, and everyone around is cheering him on. Suddenly the Dean appears in front of him and starts talking about expelling Larry because of his drinking and sexual habits. SLAM! God drops a safe on the dean’s head. Two girls appear and start talking to Larry about the best place for them to have sex. Larry opts to just have sex right where they are and everyone goes crazy with excitement. Well too bad for Larry this was all just a dream, from which he is awakened by a bird crapping on his head. Larry turns on the television and learns that a famous nation wide dating gameshow, Swingles, will be accepting contestants from his campus. Larry needs to get on this show, the only problem being that the show host is not exactly impressed with Larry at first. In order to get on the show, he will have to prove himself by gaining the affection of local campus hotties. With each completed task and confidence earned while talking to the ladies he gets one step closer to Swingles stardom. Getting this geek laid will not be an easy task.

The game is broken down into twelve mini-games of a sort, all of which will have you rolling on the floor with laughter. One of the games is the conversation game in which you must help Larry say the right things when talking to a hottie. When a conversation is started a box appears at the bottom of your screen, in the box is a swimming sperm – yes, you heard me; a sperm -- and to the left of the box is the game meter, which is a heart. To complete the game you must fill the heart and keep it full through the duration of the conversation. The objective is to control the sperm using your left analog stick to move up and down avoiding obstacles such as a burp or a fart icon, and catch the green hearts and the green icons in order to say the right things. Sometimes hitting the red or the camera icons can be pretty funny, it is not necessary to hit all the green icons to complete the stage, and you are encouraged to have fun with and hit the occasional red icon.

Each conversation is done in real-time with over 90,000 words of dialogue, which should allow for an insane amount of possible combinations. Some of the other games are based on your ability to follow a button sequence, similar to Parapa Da Rappa or Dance Dance Revolution with a controller.

Also included are games like the flyer toss in which you must distribute flyers to students who walk towards you down four separate lanes. Watch out, though, because some of the students are tired of getting flyers and will turn it into a paper airplane and send it back to you, and you must catch it before it reaches your flyer table. Although I wasn’t able to play all of the mini games my favorite out of all of them was Quarters. The objective of this game is to get your hottie drunk, which is accomplished by using your analog stick to bounce a quarter off of a table and into a glass, which sits in the middle of it.

Larry must earn money throughout the game, and he can do so by finding it lying around, doing jobs such as the flyer distribution, or, and this is my personal favorite, by taking photos. Larry is armed with a camera and taking pictures of hotties in seductive poses can prove to be very profitable. Take these photos to the local campus security and he will buy these from you. What he does with them I am unsure of, but I bet we are lucky we don’t have to see.

Hidden throughout the game are secret tokens so be sure to check every object you wander upon. Secret tokens along with confidence are used to gain access to different areas of the game. In all there will be twenty-five areas, spread across Walnut Community College, and other areas of town.

Control and camera movement is great. You can chose from third or first person perspectives while running around as Larry. While in first person mode, camera angles are limited to what Larry’s eyes are looking at, and in third person you can control the camera movement by panning in, out, and around, which allows you to view a very large area of the stage from a birds eye view.

This game is looking pretty damn good, and I can not wait to get my hands on a complete copy. It will be interesting to see what else gets added to the final release to keep gamers stuck like glue to their sofas with controller in hand, trying to help this loser get laid.



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