Look, behind you, a three-headed monkey! Wrong game, wood-lover. Anyway, you know, in spite of Monkey Island, it was Maniac Mansion which catapulted Lucasfilm Games to fame. Fast forward a few years. The company is now called Lucas Arts, and the lead designer of Maniac Mansion (as well as Monkey Island) has left. Time for the long-awaited sequel.
Neither protagonist Dave, nor his girlfriend Sandy make another appearance. After all, it was the Edison family which really engraved itself into the public consciousness. In addition, one of the optional characters of the first part, Bernard, is put in the top spot. He's assisted by his friends Hoagie (an overweight wannabe rock musician) and Laverne (a medicine student presumably on drugs). They receive a note from Bernards friend Green Tentacle asking for help. Apparantely, Purple Tentacle has sipped on the sewage of Dr. Fred's atomic mud machine. That made it super smart. Being evil, the goal is obvious: Ruling the world.
With the advent of new technologies comes a time of innovation, a time when pioneers set out to explore the potential of the latest inventions. Red Baron is remarkable in this concern because it is not only about the early days of a new kind of warfare, but because it was in itself one of the first dedicated combat flight simulators for home computers set in this era. And so it helped to lay down the basics of the genre just like the historical biplanes in it did for the aerial combat. A very fitting combination so to speak which gives the game a timeless appeal: Entering this world of rough 3D graphics and simplistic flight models seems to have a lot in common with taking off in one of those fragile flying machines of WWI. But let us take a look at how exactly this works to the game’s (dis)advantage and what else makes it a classic.