The Interactive Adventures of Dog Mendonça and Pizza Boy



Another crowdfunded adventure game has landed and it isn't half bad either. Not that it's among the best adventure games I've played, but it is fun and enjoyable none the least. I'm, of course, talking about the Interactive Adventures of Dog Mendonça and Pizza Boy, based on a comic book series of a same name (sans the interactive part).

For me this game was the first contact with the character, as I've never read the comics, so I couldn't tell how well the game compares on them, but as I said, the game itself is pretty decent, especially considering the Kickstarter budget Okam studio had to work with,  a little over 30k in dollars.

Gargoyle, Dog, Pazuul and Pizza Boy. While Gargoyle is just a head, I've understood he can regenerate his body, though that isn't seen in this game.
As I'm not that familiar with the characters, I'll just go with what I learned from the game. Dog Mendonça is a werewolf private investigator, who works with paranormal cases, solving crimes of the monster world. Pizza Boy is his assistant, and as far I know, called the Pizza Boy because he used to be one. Pizza Boy also is the character you play as. Other two charters hanging with Dog and Pizza Boy are a 1000-years old demon Pazuul, trapped inside of a little girl and a gargoyle head Gargoyle. Those two are just mainly backdrop characters, though you can talk with them both and Pazuul does give his/her hand on an occasion.

As an adventure game  the Interactive Adventures of Dog Mendonça and Pizza Boy is pretty good. The puzzles are mostly good, the background art is gorgeous and the music is pretty fitting as well. Even the voice acting is pretty good considering that the whole thing is pretty much a budget game.

Controls are pretty much what you'd expect from a modern adventure game. When you click over an object or a person you get choices for different interactions, like looking, talking, taking and so on. In the inventory you can combine items or just drag them over the game screen in order to use them. All in all, simple and works well. Right mouse button can be used to show the hotpots on the screen, so that also reduces pixel hunting. There's some poor design choices here and there though.

Here starts the case at hand. Pizza Boy is doing most of the heavy lifting.
A couple of puzzles aren't really puzzles at all, but work more like a tests for patience and endurance. I was, for the longest time, stuck at one point trying to get some gunpowder and I though I had exhausted all my options, when I solved it by pretty much idly teasing a character, which at that point lead him just giving me what I needed so I'd stop what I was doing. There's also a good pinch of that adventure game logic where you can do absurd things and the game world doesn't for some reason seem to notice. Though the game has a sarcastic tone about that, and Pizza Boy even breaks the 4th wall on an occasion, commenting about being in a game and so on. Also the final puzzle of the game is somewhat lackluster and anticlimactic.

Probably the worst thing about the game are the smaller interrogation scenes. I hesitate to call them puzzles, as while they technically are dialogue puzzles, they are, in the end, just choices between different options that you can go through as long as needed for you to get the right combination. They have no real challenge in them and no matter how many times you go wrong aren't penalized in any way. So the decision to even present them as puzzles is somewhat odd.

Pizza Boy checking his inventory inside his jacket.
But, all said and done, it's pretty decent game. It's not the longest adventure out there, I clocked it in a bit over 5 hours myself and I didn't even rush it. While the dialogues and voice acting is a bit wonky at places and the small budget definitely shows from time to time, it's well done effort Okam.

Personally I wasn't expecting that much, all things considering, and there's definitely room for improvement, but nothing about it is so badly wrong that it would prevent you from enjoying it, even if you won't fell in love with it. I wouldn't mind seeing more games based on this world.

The Interactive Adventures of Dog Mendonça and Pizza Boy is available through GOG and Steam.

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