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Old 12-23-2011, 11:02 PM   #1
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Default Mean Streets: Worth Playing?

So, back in the nineties Under A Killing Moon and Overseer were two of my favourite games. I never got to play The Pandora Directive, widely regarded as the best of the Tex Murphy series, but that's something I'm planning to do in the new year.

Having replayed Overseer as part of the community play through, I want to revisit the other games in the series before I do. However, I'm trying to work out if I should go right back to the beginning and play Mean Streets or skip to Martian Memorandum.

I gather that the gameplay in Mean Streets is completely different from Overseer but the story is the same. Since I tend to be more invested in the characters and stories in games than the puzzles, this puts me off somewhat. I also gather that there are action and driving sequences, and as I have the reflexes of a dead goldfish I tend to end up loathing those parts in adventure games. (You don't want to know how long it took me to get past that one gunfight in The X-Files back in the day.)

In light of which, I'm wondering if I should go straight to the second instalment, and perhaps come back to Mean Streets later on?
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Old 12-24-2011, 12:00 AM   #2
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I say you should skip it. Mean Streets is only interesting for historical reasons; it's fun to see where the Tex Murphy series started, and to compare it with Overseer. But apart from that, it's a very average game, with annoying shooting sequences and conversation puzzles* (the flight sim has an autopilot, so at least that's not a problem), and the story is told much, much better in Overseer.

* Though the conversation puzzles are not half as bad as in Martian Memorandum.
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Old 12-24-2011, 02:13 AM   #3
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This was the exact question I had. I bought all the Tex Murphy games through GOG but I found Mean Street a little difficult to get into. Probably because of the complicated driving. Then I found out Overseer is a remake so I think I will also start with the 2nd one.
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Old 12-24-2011, 03:13 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Origami View Post
This was the exact question I had.
me too !

So, dear Tex Murphy fans in which order would you suggest the series to be played ?

*skip* Mean Streets
Martian Memorandum
Under A Killing Moon
Pandora Directive
Overseer

that´s the one ?
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Old 12-24-2011, 03:30 AM   #5
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basically what it boils down to for me is which of the two games tells the story better. I am kinda having my fingers crossed and hope you will say Overseer, otherwise I have to force myself to play Mean Streets since well.....story comes above anything else for me. >.>
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Old 12-24-2011, 04:56 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiocfaidh View Post
So, dear Tex Murphy fans in which order would you suggest the series to be played ?

*skip* Mean Streets
Martian Memorandum
Under A Killing Moon
Pandora Directive
Overseer

that´s the one ?
Well, yes. But I'd advise against playing Martian Memorandum first, which is all about dialogues and more dialogues. Save it for later. There's a kind of watershed after the first two games. Starting with UaKM, the games are 1st-person and 3D, with real FMV scenes instead of just talking heads. Gameplay and puzzles are very different too. You could even start with Overseer without any real problems, because the events take place before those in UaKM and Pandora. It would be wise to play UaKM and Pandora in the correct order though.
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Old 12-24-2011, 01:09 PM   #7
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Thanks Fien !

So Overseer officially is a prequel (I can´t stand this term since Phantom Menace) to UAKM & PD ?

Aren´t there any references made to these two stories which enhance the Overseer experience ?
Or recurring characters for that matter ?

From what I´ve gathered from all the reviews I read over the years Pandora Directive seems to be the best entry anyway. It´s always good to end a series on a high note.

so ...

Overseer
Under A Killing Moon
Pandora Directive

seems to be the optimal order

PS
Playing all the Tex Murphy adventures is one of the few New Years Pledges I have
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Old 12-24-2011, 01:52 PM   #8
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Overseer is a remake of the first game so the order you could play them in is:

Overseer
Martian Memorandum
Under A Killing Moon
Pandora Directive

skipping Mean Streets which was the original first one.
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Old 12-25-2011, 05:41 AM   #9
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On the other hand, the framing story of Overseer is a continuation of The Pandora Directive. You'll miss some of the character development being made in UAKM and PD if you start with Overseer. I'd suggest that you play the three later games in their original order and do the older ones after that if you wish, like so:

Under a Killing Moon
The Pandora Directive
Overseer
Mean Streets and/or Martian Memorandum

Just MHO.
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Old 12-25-2011, 06:07 AM   #10
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On the other hand, the framing story of Overseer is a continuation of The Pandora Directive. You'll miss some of the character development being made in UAKM and PD if you start with Overseer.
Hmmm, interesting.

So Overseer takes place after Pandora ...

Starting with Martain Memorandum seems like the ideal start/appetizer though.
Playing it after the FMV titles might be too much of a let-down.
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Old 12-25-2011, 04:20 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Tiocfaidh View Post
So Overseer takes place after Pandora ...
Well, yes and no. Tex tells his wannabe girlfriend Chelsee over dinner what happened years ago before he met her. So the entire story is told in flash backs.

Whatever game you play first, if you like Tex you will want to see more of him. And if you don't like him, well, that's the end of it. I'm not trying to get you to play the games in "my" order, but I do want to say that I don't agree with Harald about the character development. The only character development that I see taking place in Overseer is the one Tex went through in the flashbacks. At the end of the story he is a different man/detective, the same man you meet in UaKM and Pandora. But other familiar characters in the neighborhood that appear both in UaKM and Pandora, are absent in Overseer.
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Old 12-25-2011, 09:06 PM   #12
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Thanks for the advice, all. I shall do as suggested and go on with Martian Memorandum. I know the gameplay is very different from the FMV games, but I'm curious to experience the story. I remember at least one reference to Memorandum in Under A Killing Moon, although the details are hazy after all these years.
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Old 12-26-2011, 11:41 AM   #13
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Thanks for your input Fien !

I´ll ask a final question.

Which game´s ending is a more fitting finale to the series - the one from Pandora Directive or Overseer ?
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Old 12-26-2011, 11:43 AM   #14
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Nice discussion. If I ever get around to the Tex Murphy games, then at least I'll know in what order I should play them...
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Old 12-26-2011, 05:46 PM   #15
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Mean Streets was the only part I'd played, and I haven't finished it (definitely getting back when I get some time), but I remember having a lot of fun with it, taking notes in those "info charts" and everything (the shooting sequences were "unnecessary" to say the least though).
I supposed I might be in the minority, but I'll recommend at least trying it out
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Old 12-27-2011, 06:04 AM   #16
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Nice discussion. If I ever get around to the Tex Murphy games, then at least I'll know in what order I should play them...
Yeah, that's it in a nutshell: Tex is good in any order!
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Old 12-27-2011, 01:47 PM   #17
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I enjoyed Mean Streets quite a bit in spite of its quirks and limitations. It was somewhat simplistic, but something about ferreting out a bit more information at each step and having take notes about it appealed to me. I'd say any adventure gamer should give it a try as well.
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Old 12-27-2011, 04:33 PM   #18
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I enjoyed Mean Streets quite a bit in spite of its quirks and limitations. It was somewhat simplistic, but something about ferreting out a bit more information at each step and having take notes about it appealed to me. I'd say any adventure gamer should give it a try as well.
What Andro said

It's a classic and should be played.
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Old 03-21-2012, 09:06 PM   #19
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To everyone reading this, now might be a good time to start playing the Tex games if you haven’t already. If you start playing the Tex games now, you should have time to finish at least two or three of them by May 15. On that day, if you’ve done your Tex game playing homework, you’ll probably want to sell your kidneys so that you can pledge a huge amount for the Kickstarter fund.

If you want to play the best Tex games, then I would say play UAKM, then Pandora, then Overseer. However, if you want to have the full Tex Murphy experience, play all five of them, in order. Keep in mind that if you start with Mean Streets though, you might not like it and give up on Tex games. Before you do that, please know that the last three Tex games are NOTHING like the first two! For this reason, I suggest the following to be the ideal introduction to Tex Murphy…

Under a Killing Moon is divided into six playable chapters, which the game calls days. If you have never played a Tex game before, play Day One: Cuffing up Flemm. Day One in this game is the only Day in a Tex game that has a self self-contained case that doesn’t have anything to do with the game’s main case. It’s also a great introduction to Tex Murphy and his world. Day One has about 3 or 4 hours of gameplay, so it will tease you with what great things are to come when you dive into the last three, and best, games of the series. Playing this segment of UAKM may help you get through Mean Streets and Martian Memorandum. You may be tempted to just continue on to Day Two of Under a Killing Moon, but keep in mind that the following is the FULL Tex Murphy experience to a newcomer…

Under a Killing Moon (Day One)
Mean Streets
Martian Memorandum
Under a Killing Moon (entire game)
Under a Killing Moon Novel (the novel is based on the game)
The Pandora Directive Novel (the game is based on the novel)
The Pandora Directive (Entertainment mode)
Tex Murphy: Overseer (Entertainment mode)

And once you’ve done all that, you may want to even replay The Pandora Directive on the Game Player mode, and also try to go down a different narrative path. You could also play the Game Player mode in Overseer, but that game doesn’t have different narrative paths, new content, and new environments on it’s harder mode like The Pandora Directive does. Most Tex fans consider The Pandora Directive to be the best, and most repayable game in the series.

I did a similar thing to the Sam & Max series in 2007. The first Sam & Max game I played was Telltale’s very first episode (Culture Shock), and since I loved the game and the characters, I decided to go back and play Hit the Road before continuing to the second Telltale episode (Situation: Comedy). I am glad I did it this way!
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