LGR – Turbo Science – DOS PC Game Review

LGR – Turbo Science – DOS PC Game Review

[typing] It’s time for another game from the edutainment shelf! And I’m in the mood for something tricky to pronounce. “Quarky and Quaysoo’s Turbo Science,”
developed by Jeff Tennell Productions and published by Sierra Online in 1992 for MS-DOS. Quarky, I get. But “Quaysoo?”
Or “Kay-soo?” “Kay-so?” Mmm… queso. I’m gonna go with that. Anyway, this is the first game in the Turbo
Learning Series by Jeff Tennell Productions And if that name sounds familiar,
it’s probably because you’re a Sierra gamer. “The Adventures of Willy Beamish” is the big game
they developed that this one resembles the most, with several of the same designers and artists
being responsible for Turbo Science. “LOOK OUT! You’re Surrounded By Science!!” “It’s in your skateboard. It’s in your lunch.” “It’s in that gooey stuff that
collects on your Nintari powerpad…” Ha ha, “Nintari.” I really need to play Willy Beamish again. The chunky box of Turbo Science
is stuffed full of beefy contents, including the game on a trio of 3.5″ diskettes, leaflets for contacting Sierra Online, a brochure introducing parents and
teachers to the Sierra Discovery Series, and a shockingly sparse quick reference sheet that basically just tells you you’re
a moron if the sound isn’t working. Then you’ve got a booklet
telling you how to play the game and, to top it all off, there’s a hefty
Turbo Science Research Guide, which isn’t so much a manual as it is a guide. For researching. Contained within are 152 pages of scientific knowledge presented in a friendly and inviting
way that is not only fun to read but is absolutely necessary to
answering certain questions in the game. It also contains one tasty-looking recipe for queso. Or maybe I just put that there. Turbo Science begins with the Sierra logo and that always-likable Jeff Tunnell monster, followed by a totally RADICAL
and GNARLY animated intro screen. [radical and gnarly MIDI electric guitar riff] Ah, 1992. I can taste the Ecto-Cooler and hear the
Home Improvement theme song already. [whoosh] After this, you’re greeted with the main menu with the titular characters slapping each other around vying for your attention. Signing in is the first order of business, as is choosing your difficulty from one of two choices, which correspond to learning levels
appropriate for fourth grade or eighth graders. After this, you can choose to play a [deep, soulful voice]
“Practice Mode…” which lets you take a stab at the
main game without any consequences. You’re also given the option to check out
the competition in the locker room, and, man, I just freakin’ love
this art and animation style. It’s so reminiscent of so many
games from my childhood that it just makes me wanna sit around in spaceship
pajamas and eat Pop Tarts all day. But yeah, checking out this cast
of characters is quite the thing. Apparently, one of them is the Australian-
born grand niece of Martin Luther King. No word on if they mean Senior or Junior. And the title characters’ surnames
are actually O’Ghandi. Because even though they’re
extra-terrestrial space elves, their family traces their origins to New Delhi, India. I don’t know how any of this works. On to the main game itself, which takes the form of checkpoint race across one of
the most adventure-gamey looking maps I’ve ever seen. Except that this is not an adventure game and instead is a quiz game with
point-and-click elements on the side. This first location and each location you visit hereafter is not only filled with fantastically psychedelic artwork, but a variety of questions that need answering. But while quiz games can be downright boring and
are absolutely cliché in the world of edutainment, the way they approach it in Turbo Science is a lot of fun! So, back to that map screen. Your goal here is to make it to the finish
line before your opponents do, of course, and there are multiple
transportation methods to get there. Each of them cost money and the fastest ones cost the most money. So answer as many questions
as you can in each checkpoint to grab those fat stacks and get out of there. And the questions aren’t horribly unforgiving, either. If you get it wrong, you have
a couple more shots to answer it, at the loss of some time and money. And each checkpoint has a unique theme going on, from creepy castle laboratories to pirate ships with Johnny Castaway cameos. And with each theme comes
a unique set of questions to answer, mostly relating to physical science. For example, on the beach here,
you got dudes surfing waves, the sun beaming down from above, hot dogs being cooked, animals making noise and helicopters flying by. So this provides the opportunity to answer
questions about electromagnetic energy, thermodynamics, sound waves, radiation and aerodynamic forces. You’re also provided an assortment
of scientific measuring equipment to help answer many of these questions, the selection of which will change
depending on the questions on offer. And of course, plenty of these questions can only be answered
if you study the included research guide. And, yeah, you can simply guess and get them eventually for less money, or maybe you’re just awesome and
know the answer already, which is fine. But for the purpose this was designed for, which is helping teach kids of a certain age about physical science in an
enjoyable and captivating way, well I think Turbo Science excels in areas
that few edutainment games can pull off. A surprising amount of the answers require
a legit understanding of these concepts at hand and how to go about testing and measuring
them in order to get the right answer. Many other edutainment games simply require
a rote memorization of facts and figures, which is hardly any fun at all,
even with a flashy UI and catchy music. Well, thankfully, Turbo Science has all
that stuff on top of a solid method of helping kids learn new concepts and
put them into practice in a safe environment. And that would be awesome enough, but then
you’ve got an impressive amount of dialogue, cut scenes, animations and competition
going on involving the AI characters. Unfortunately, there is no recorded speech, which makes sense, seeing as it’s a floppy disk game, but it makes up for that with excellent
artwork and enjoyably funky AdLib music. [enjoyably funky AdLib music] The long and short of it is that Turbo Science
is one of those rare edutainment titles that takes something as
ostensibly boring as pop quizzes and twists it up into a package that’s
delightful to play, even as an adult. Well, at least for a time. I mean, it wears out its welcome pretty quickly
after you’ve beaten the first set of opponents and have to start replaying the
same checkpoints over and over. And a couple of them are painfully
obnoxious to endure, even the first time around. [goofy music and clowns laughing] However, for kids, this is prime educational enjoyment and it’s one that I desperately wish
I had when I was nine or ten years old. I love the style, the gameplay, the music, and I love that I own a copy. Shame that it’s not more readily available
online these days, at least not yet, but hopefully that’ll change because
“Quirky Queso’s Turbo Science,” or whatever, it still holds up mighty well. [gnarly/radical MIDI electric guitar riff] And that is all for Edutainment Month 2016. We’ll see y’all next year for more of this. And of course, there’s way more
coming in the near future. All sorts of hardware, software, Tech Tales,
Thrifts and things are planned, so stay tuned! And as always, thank you very much for watching LGR.

100 thoughts on “LGR – Turbo Science – DOS PC Game Review

  1. Hey LGR would you do a video on Treasure Mountain! by The Learning Company? I remember having so much fun with that game on school computers in Elementary School. Thanks!

  2. So it's called Adlib music?! for a long time i wanted to know what kind of music i hear in old Dos/Win Games, thank you for mentioning that, i'm now listening to a playlist of Adlib music from old games.

  3. I remember playing a game as a kid. It was placed in a snowy mountain area and you had to do math questions (I think) and buy pick axes and all kinds of stuff. Think it was called Magic Mountain or something like that but I can't remember. Would love to have it identified and see a video on it someday.

  4. Wow. I was hoping for something I might know, but then you REALLY went out of your way to find something I've never heard mentioned anywhere ever in the history of time.

    Or maybe you were born a couple years before me, so you can pick-up anything off your shelf and I probably won't know what it is? 1992 was a bad year to be born. I'm just old enough to have lived through the 90's but not old enough to remember much about them.

  5. My favorite edutainment game titles as a kid were the Cluefinder series by The Learning Company! Definitely very early to mid 2000's games lol

  6. 1:00 WOOOOOAHHH DUDE!!!!
    Like… You're holding the three floppies in the same way as they're drawn on the floppy itself! Like woooahh! Mind blown!! Like tootally dude!

  7. Speaking of science, do you own or have you heard of Isaac Asimov's Science Adventure 2? There is almost nothing about this game on YouTube, and I remember it having a 3D mini-game with extremely catchy music that I miss.

  8. Oh man, this was MY game growing up. I played it endlessly and scribbled dumb kid science notes all over the "Research Guide." I played tons of other DOS edutainment games and I always found this and Island of Dr. Quandry to be my favorites. Plus this game definitely made an impression on me, I'm an analytical chemist by trade lol.

  9. I never had Turbo Science, but I did have EcoQuest from Sierra. That was a pretty cool edutainment adventure.

  10. Speaking of edutainment, how about the Castle and Island of Dr. Brain games? The later Dr. Brain games weren't very good, but I loved those two when I was a kid.

  11. Oh man, I had this as a kid! This game totally gave me a head start in my science classes, growing up. That and shows like Beakman's World.

  12. Does anyone else here remember an edutainment game that focused on maths that was set in a haunted house – I remember one particular level where you had to cross a cavern or something by hopping across platforms with parts of sums on them (I think, my memory is very vague on this) and you had to choose the ones that made up the right calculation before time ran out and you'd fall to your death if you got it wrong.

    I've been looking for this game for more than 10 years at this point. As far as I can remember there was a mystery in there to lure you into doing the maths, maybe something to do with your character's girlfriend going missing/getting kidnapped by ghosts? or maybe you were a ghost who was trying to escape the house? (I honestly have no idea, it's been so long). It had a spooky little atmosphere that intrigued me as a child, and I was always annoyed that I had to do maths in order to play it 😛

    I feel like the title had a maths pun in it….

  13. I must say I really appreciate the captions provided in all your videos by default. It enables "silent" watching your videos whenever necessary!

  14. omg thank you. I was a kid playing this game and time and time I would remember this game but didn't know the title.

  15. Man, I was so blown away by these early CD rom games as a kid. My father saw a few of these and was so impressed that he instantly bought Myst as soon as it came out waaaay back then. It was probably the only game that he ever bought for himself, as much as for us, and we loved every second of it.

  16. I would really appreciate a review of Bushbuck DOS game I remember that edutainment title and was quite interesting

  17. OMG I had this as a kid! Mostly because I loved the other games in the Sierra discovery series. Castle of Dr brain, lost secrets of the rain forest etc. I remember not liking this one though lol.

  18. Edutaintment overload! Learnt about a game, what Queso is and even how to make it! 😀 Thanks LGR!

  19. I think I remember seeing this game once, but never played it. The Adventures of Willy Beamish on the other hand was one of the games that defined my childhood.

    Can't wait for you to do that one.

  20. FINALLY!! more Edutainment! Uggg that waiting poeriod was WAY to long. Hope your move went well and nothing got lost or smooshed.
    I love how at around the 3:00 point the names are in the same font as is used in the titles of the Captain Kirk era start trek movies… Does this… Does this mean your finally gonna do an LGR Star Trek Game review?! Even an old DOS Star Trek game would be awesome as I played a few of them! =D

  21. Oh man please play Adventures of Willy Beamish again so you can do a Let's Play or a Review. That game is just the best slice of 90's suburbia satire through the eyes of a 10 year old a guy like me could ask for. Who could forget the likes of "valley-girl older sister", "beleaguered head of household", "corrupt union boss", "downtown blue collar thugs", and "Japanese shutter-bug tourists who are actually ninjas". Brilliant game–shame we never got to see the sequel.

  22. Hey LGR I watched your videos for a while always helps me wind down after work. I don't ever make requests but I was wondering since I'm stuck in the dessert of Afghanistan I was wondering if their were any middle eastern themed games for the PC on the top of my head I can think of three, Prince of Persia, Magic Carpet, and Aladdin. Have you or do you have any in your grand collection? Thanks

  23. That info box about 30 seconds in was really slick… nice touch, sir. ?

    I do frown on your inclusion of American cheese and cilantro in your queso, though. :/

  24. 5:20 Oh my GOD, so that's what that weird thing is on the balloon from The Incredible Toon Machine. Which I was just replaying this morning. Freaky.

  25. hey could you do some old horror games? Really interested in seeing what was available back in the days.

  26. This game messed me up big time. Firstly, I was seven when I got it, so I was already not in the intended age range. Then, for some reason, my parents didn't give me that manual that it came with. I didn't even know it came with a manual until I saw this video! I guess they thought it contained the answers and they didn't want me "cheating" with it. I grew up thinking I was just terrible at science because of this game, and thus pursued English, all the while resenting people who were good in science. I still have a science "complex", and it's all because of Quarky and Quaysoo. Thanks a lot, Sierra.

  27. lgr is the youtube channel ill binge for like 2 weeks, forget it exists, then freak out a little when i watch another vid, creating another 2 week binge lol

  28. Hmm, so is your Queso actually tasty or does it just look the part? I guess I'll just have to find out myself.

  29. i love how it takes more system resource to watch these dos and old school windows game video than to just play it yourself.

  30. Johnny Castaway cameos, lol. That was a great little program, you should do a video where you cover a few of the better screen savers like that one If you haven't already, that is. With the exception of maybe After Dark it seems like nobody remembers any of those anymore, it'd be a fun video to watch.

  31. i appreciate 1:04 how you spread the floppies to match the ones on the label, like a level 1 Droste effect

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