The third episode has arrived and it finds Wallace & Gromit entering the ice cream business. They've invented the Infiniflavour which can extract taste molecules from anything and make ice cream with this flavour.
This episode felt familiar, like something you catch on repeat late one night when turning on the TV. The first act lets you control Gromit as he has to stop three dogs from ruining the ice machine. You get three objectives and have to complete them to advance to the next act. Heard that one before? It's been used in every Wallace & Gromit episode up till now and also in the 19 year old The Secret of Monkey Island.
It also seems like whoever designed the puzzles have also taken a look at <b>Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge</b>. What you learn during the first act is also used later in the game, just like the business with the voodoo dolls in Monkey Island 2.
In the first part you learn how to make a voodoo doll so you can get rid of Largo and in the finale, you use that knowledge to make a second one of LeChuck. The longest part of Muzzled! is the second one, just like Monkey Island 2, and you have to collect four pieces of a paper to advance, just like Monkey Island 2. Of course, this being an episode and not a full game, all of these puzzles are much simpler and shorter than their Monkey Island 2 counterparts.
"Muzzled!" introduces one new location: The fair. Muzzle works as a villain and the duo's attempts to stop him, ending in a typical chase sequence, is amusing. Contrary to previous episodes, you control Gromit for almost the entire time you play Muzzled! It's also nice to see that the secondary characters, speficially Ms. Flitt and Duncan, continue their storyline from the previous episode. As usual, Jared Emerson-Johnson's music is excellent and I hope there will be a soundtrack release.
Muzzled! is closer to 4 skulls than the previous episodes, but the low quality speech still grates in my poor ears for every sibilant uttered by the actors. I played the classic Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis from 1992 the other day. It uses, I believe, about the same sampling rate as this episode, but because it doesn't attempt to upsample everything on-the-fly nor uses lossy compression, it felt more pleasing. A 2009 game being beaten by a game from 1992 in the sound quality department shouldn't happen. Maybe it's about keeping the filesize down, but when every episode are in the are of 300 to 500 MB in size, that excuse doesn't hold water.
Pros: Good story, funny villain
Cons: Sample quality, shortish