For those not familiar with The Family Guy TV series do not fear. The game, Back to the Multiverse, successfully gets you up to speed with what’s important via a brief introduction in the story mode. For the sake of not confusing such uninitiated readers further, the basic cast comprises Stewie (a walking, talking baby genius), Brian (Stewie’s friend, a talking dog) and Bertram (Stewie’s half-brother baby nemesis).
Family Guy: Back To The Multiverse extends the story of Bertram’s demise in the Family Guy animated series, with a parallel Bertram returning to the current universe to exact revenge upon Stewie and enslave humanity.
Using a Multiverse remote, Bertram traverses alternate universes to recruit an army to achieve his nefarious goals, while Stewie and Brian go in pursuit of Betram with their own remote. Bertram’s efforts to recruit from these parallel universes takes Stewie and Brian through a wide assortment of ‘what-if’ worlds where they must battle with the likes of an Amish world power and a disenfranchised Santa Claus.
The story mode of Family Guy: Back to the Multiverse features drop-in / drop-out co-operative play in split-screen mode with plenty of hours of entertainment. As a third-person shooter it’s not spectacular but the limited gameplay mechanics are compensated for with humorous dialogue as well as the diversity in game worlds. Each level offers a somewhat cynical view of ‘what-if’ scenarios on how our world could have ended up (and did in alternate dimensions) when, for example, the overmining of Earth’s resources left the Amish to become the global superpower, or if online shopping became so prevalent that Santa Claus had to resort to becoming a ‘gun-for-hire’ to make ends meet.
This humorous slant on life, coupled with the good number of alternate levels and witty dialogue, makes Back to the Multiverse more than just a third-person action game and I quickly overlooked the otherwise simple gameplay and visuals (which, incidentally, is intentional to maintain the Family Guy style). For those not familiar with Family Guy humour, think The Simpsons, only a little more risqu