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Grim Fandango Remastered arrives on Android and iOS

The LucasArts adventure classic gets modern graphics and sounds and makes the move to mobile platforms.

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Good to see you again, old friend. You're looking mighty high-res! Screenshot by Rick Broida/CNET

It's a good month for nostalgia and mobility. First came Cinemaware's Wings Remastered for Android and iOS, and now developer Double Fine (best known for the modern adventure game Broken Age) has released Grim Fandango Remastered for iOS and Android.

If the name doesn't ring a bell, you were probably born sometime after 1990. The game made its PC debut in 1998 to almost universal acclaim, and indeed currently holds a Metacritic score of 94. It came from LucasArts, the game-studio offshoot of Lucasfilm responsible for loads of other adventure classics: Maniac Mansion, Zak McKracken and the Monkey Island series.

Grim Fandango was the studio's first stab at a 3D, and also one of its last original adventure games, as the category seemed to dwindle with the rise of console gaming.

Anyway, enough history. Double Fine Productions, under the direction of Grim Fandango's original project leader, Tim Schafer, released Grim Fandango Remastered for PCs and consoles back in January. The mobile versions arrived earlier this week.

The game tells a decidedly unique tale. As Manny Calvera, travel agent for the Department of Death, it's your job to unravel a strange conspiracy that threatens...well, I won't spoil anything. Just imagine an interactive, puzzle-rich adventure in the style of Tim Burton's movie "The Nightmare Before Christmas" and you'll get the idea.

If you've never played an old-school adventure game like this, you might find the pacing a little slow, the puzzles a little less obvious than what you'd find in, say, modern room-escape games. I also think Grim Fandango benefits greatly from a larger screen; I found it fairly cramped on an iPhone, even one as large as an iPhone 6 Plus.

That said, regardless of where you play it and what you're accustomed to, this is a game not to be missed. The updated graphics and sound make it feel like something new, not some old 16-bit rehash. And there's an actual plot here, one infused with humor and pathos. It's what I used to refer to as a play-in-the-bathtub game, something you can really luxuriate in.

Scratch one more title off our list of the best classic games we wish were on the iPad!

Grim Fandango for Android and iOS has a price tag of $14.99, but it's on sale for $9.99 (£7.99 or AU$12.99) as part of Double Fine's launch week.