MANOS: The Hands of Fate – The Director’s Cut is a retro-style 2D action platformer that takes the player through the basic narrative of the cult classic film made famous by Mystery Science Theater 3000. You are Michael, the head of a generic white-bread 60’s family. While seeking shelter before nightfall, you stumble across a lodge that is home to a cult leader known as The Master and his bizarre hunched and knobby-kneed servant Torgo. You then progress through 8 levels chock-full of MST3K and B-movie references until your final showdown against The Master himself.
I really do enjoy this game. Originally I had played this as an iOS title, and on an iPhone the controls and response time of the game can be aggravating. As a Steam game all of my original complaints were resolved when I connected a PS3 controller to my PC and played it console style. Manos: The Game is very entertaining on it’s own, but the constant references to MST3K and movies like Troll 2 and Plan 9 from Outer Space make it truly special. With a controller the game plays very well and it is an excellent 8-bit experience that seems directly lifted from the NES era.
So, much like the film you start off trying to find shelter for the night only to come face to face with Torgo. The obstacles you have to fight in the first level set the bar for most of the rest of the game. You perform standard platforming actions as you progress towards each boss battle and along the way you defeat 8-bit screaming skulls, killer shrews, crawling hands, hobgoblins and more. Each level offers something different and for fans of this type of game, it works well.
I definitely can say that as a fan of classic games and 2D platformers, MANOS: The Hands of Fate – The Director’s Cut is absolutely worth the low $4.99 price-tag. Fans of MST3K should hop on Steam and give this one a shot. Compared to the original iOS version, The Director’s Cut features better controls, new cut-scenes that depict events from the film, great remastered presentation and a “Torgo Mode” once you beat the game the first time. There are a few parts where the level design is too difficult for its own good, but overall this game has great replay value and is very enjoyable.
Out of a Possible 5 Stars