Family Guy: Back to the Multiverse Exclusive Look at E3 2012
Giggity Giggity Goo! The Griffins are finally coming to a console near you. Developed by Heavy Iron Studios and published by Activision, Family Guy: Back to the Multiverse returns gamers and fans of the hit animated series to the eighth season’s premiere, the Emmy-winning “Road to the Multiverse”, one of the many popular “Road to…” episodes over the years that follow Stewie and Brian on some memorable adventures. In this particular one, the pair uses one of Stewie’s inventions to travel to wacky alternate realities. We were fortunate enough to get a chance to squeeze into the very last behind-closed-doors session at E3 and sat down with Lyle Hall, president and CEO of Heavy Iron Studios, and Alex Knight, associate producer at Activision.
In our exclusive look at the Back to the Multiverse pre-alpha build, Hall and Knight showed off one of ten levels, each based on other popular Family Guy episodes (meaning there’ll be no return to the hilarious Disney version of Quahog… awww!). The level they played, based on the “Amish Guy” episode that aired less than a year ago, was a parallel universe in which all of Quahog was overrun by Amish people.
Hall assured us that in sticking to a plan to please fans of the show, Heavy Iron Studios is definitely shooting for an M rating and will throw in plenty of Easter eggs and cinematics into the levels. True to the trademarks of the series, Back to the Multiverse will feature cutaway gags and all of your favorite characters. In the brief demo of the Amish level, we saw Greased-up Deaf Guy, Herbert the child-loving old pedo, and Peter churning butter, to name a few. Betram, Stewie’s arch-nemesis and the villain behind the dimension-twisting plot of the game, is sure to appear as well.
Players can quickly switch between Stewie and Brian with a tap of a button, and a second player can just as easily drop in and out for some good old fashioned split-screen fun. As Brian, you’ll have access to many more conventional weapons (such as pistols and sniper rifles) with the occasional character-specific one (e.g. broken whiskey bottle for the alcoholic family dog). As Stewie, you’ll get more fantastical and sci-fi weapons, along with specific ones related to the diabolical baby (e.g. loaded diapers as grenades). All of these weapons in their arsenal are available to Stewie and Brian via portals that you can access in certain places in levels.
The third person shooter will also feature some special power-ups that can picked up. We saw one that summoned one of show’s most beloved jokes, the Giant Chicken, to help you out by pummeling enemies. In addition, by accomplishing special objectives, such as killing things in certain ways, players will earn in-game cash that they can use to unlock bonus goodies or enhance Stewie and Brian’s attributes.
I can’t help but compare the look and style to EA’s The Simpsons, a nice little game from a few years ago that I not only enjoyed thoroughly but the achievement whore in me 1000′ed. That might rub Family Guy fans the wrong way, but as a fan of both legendary comedies and definitely more of Seth McFarlane’s flagship series, I’m highly looking forward to the edgier and sometimes unbelievably shocking take of Family Guy when Back to the Multiverse hits Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 on September 25, 2012. Victory shall be mine!