Sam & Max return next month

Episode 1 is nearly here.

The long-awaited return of cult adventuring duo Sam & Max is only just over a month away, with the first of six planned episodes nearly ready for download.

To celebrate the first birthday of broadband entertainment network GameTap, Sam & Max Episode 1: Culture Shock will be available exclusively on the site for 15 days as part of its $9.95 a month subscription service. After then it can be bought directly from developer Telltale Games - an arrangement that it is set to continue for all six instalments.

The hilarious dog detective and his “rabbity-thing” sidekick began life as an underground comic but hit the big-time with PC adventure classic Sam & Max: Hit the Road way back in 1993. A sequel, subtitled Freelance Police, was suddenly canned in 2004 and all appeared to be lost for devoted fans.

But now the duo is back in mystery-solving action after discovering that “a group of former child stars have become involved in nefarious deeds”. If you ask us, S Club 7 had better start watching over their shoulders.

Telltale and GameTap are also co-producing new animated Sam & Max machinima shorts and a behind the scenes documentary to air between the episodes, which are due to be released monthly.

A worldwide price for the solo download of each Sam & Max Episode has yet to be confirmed.

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