Hello Neighbor: Hide and Seek Review

tinyBuild has done a great job in building its portfolio over the past five years with many titles being well received such as Mr. Shifty, The Final Station and Party Hard 2. There are other games however that haven’t exactly shone bright. Hello Neighbor released last year for the first time yet before that is when it received most of it’s publicity, due to somewhat a broken state of the game in terms of technical issues and in difficulty when in early access. Keen on sticking to the IP, Hide and Seek looks to rectify what went wrong but instead, makes things worse.

It very much feels like a rehash of the original just with differing characters and the intent of building a narrative that leads up to the first title. I didn’t get far, or couldn’t get far into the content due to lack of direction, interest and a lot of irritation. You play as the young daughter of the Neighbor you had to avoid in the 2017 game. This time it’s about hiding from your brother as they play hide and seek and jump into exaggerated worlds that are based upon the reality of their home.

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Whilst playing it becomes obvious that the hide and seek is more a side objective whilst you try to complete different puzzles, and uncover what happened in the events leading up to the game before it. This feels like a piece of DLC and yet is priced otherwise, which wouldn’t be so bad if the quality was there but unfortunately that is not the case.

Gameplay is uninspiring and repetitive with the major game mechanic coming across as completely annoying. Whilst on the run from the brother, if he spots you the music kicks in to let you know he is closing in and when the distance between you is miniscule the screen fades a little, those parts are okay. When he grabs you however, he lets out this completely obnoxious noise somewhat reminiscent of Roger’s “NYEH” in American Dad. Aside from that, I don’t feel incentivised to go ahead with the levels, there’s nothing to clearly guide the way and when I try to accomplish something, I’m held back by terrible level design and difficulty spikes.

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The most promising aspect of the series are the visuals, delivering a unique art-style that I feel is now synonymous with these games, from the characters to the worlds, the use of varied colours is inviting and urges you to wander and take in the scenery around you. Accompanied with the ambient noises, each level really comes alive and immerses you right before everything else knocks you back into the real world.

OVERALL: 3/10 – TERRIBLE

Hide and Seek is a complete misstep for the publishing portfolio of tinyBuild and yet another step in the wrong direction for Dynamic Pixels, a promising premise with lacklustre execution makes for a forgettable experience.

Reviewed by Rhys Baldwin.

(Disclaimer: Jester Says received a review copy of Hello Neighbor: Hide and Seek, however this does not in any way affect the scoring of a game or our thoughts on the game itself. We believe in total honesty and being transparent with you.)

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Far: Lone Sails Review

The required pace needed is that of geriatric Hamster towing a crate of avocado mash with pesto and bacon bits (I’m hungry again).

I’m gonna be brutal here. I really enjoyed Far: Lone Sails, it amused me …it tickled the proverbial nip and charmed me from start to finish. But the more I think about it, the more I confuse myself with my own opinion of it.

Developer, Okomotive plug it on Steam with;

“Traverse a dried-out seabed littered with the remains of a decaying civilization. Keep your unique vessel going, overcome numerous obstacles and withstand the hazardous weather conditions. How far can you make it? What will you find?”

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I’m just going to break that down for you. “Traverse a dried-out seabed littered with the remains of a decaying civilization” – The word “traverse” implies some thoughtful and challenging platforming (er..No) and the seabed is bloody loaded with stuff to pick up.

Keep your unique vessel going, overcome numerous obstacles” – As I just mentioned, the seabed is crowded with junk, junk you can burn in your fusion reactor (it’s not really a fusion reactor, I just watched Back to the Future). My Vessel was chock full of stuff to burn; chairs, lamps, crates, suitcases …toilets – all fuel for the beast!

Overcome numerous obstacles and withstand the hazardous weather conditions” – Some shallow physics-based puzzles which were really not puzzles at all. There’s only one way to go, towards the solution up ahead and as for weather conditions, Pah! A thunder/hail storm which isn’t able to entirely damage your Mad Max machine due to the over head cover available and there’s a Volcano eruption at the end which you have to run away from, except the required pace needed is that of geriatric Hamster towing a crate of avocado mash with pesto and bacon bits (I’m hungry again).

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“How far can you make it? What will you find?” – All the bloody way, thanks. And I found bugger all too! Seriously, I read that quote as a challenge with a touch mystery tagged on. Gently caressing my ego like a Fabergé egg being pelted with feathers. The expedition lasted 90 minutes and all I found was stuff to burn. Gits!

All that said, It was still fun, enjoyable and relaxing. It begins at a grave, paying respects to a loved one apparently, although I saw it as you’ve just disposed of a problem …Mafia style – regardless, its unclear which holds truth (hoping the latter). From the grave you head home, through your home, out the other side, down the beach and into the “Vessel” – it appears I had already packed. Away we go. There are no loading screens, no menu at the start. Just a no-nonsense attitude which sets up the minimalistic and tutorial light nature of the experience to follow perfectly.

You play what looks like a cross between Tank Girl and a Kleptomania suffering Red Riding Hood. When entering structures or the sand barge the front face disappears, allowing you to see the interior easily. The vehicle is set up with a few modules from the offset – the engine, the fuel thingy and a firehose. You pick up a few more as you “explore”. Every module is activated by a big red button that you either jump into or push. When you get rolling, when you’ve “found” the sail and the suction tube and wheels with better traction you can really get some speed, this is the only time where that “difficulty” rears its lazy head. Managing your speed by releasing steam from the engine whilst also refuelling and stocking all the debris sucked up by the tube can get somewhat pressing.

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On the whole it was all very easy, I’d be shocked if anyone ran out of fuel. Fixing parts with the repair torch and putting out fires didn’t happen often for me and the only proper puzzle that had me perplexed for over 10 minutes was at the end.

Now the sand trawler sim has won more awards than the average Sundance film, presumably for its visual styling and beautiful use of the 3D-2D engine. It may be set within the same universe as Gears of War because the dry desolate world is 50 shades of …contrasting blacks and whites, with the only spots of colour being red or orange. However, it is stunning, its genuinely charming and I found myself taking 18 screenshots over the first playthrough.

I found myself chilling out. Comfortable with the trip across the sand wastes, playing entirely one-handed and just taking it all in. Until the ending showed up and left me annoyed, almost livid …Is that it? I genuinely wanted more muddy sand to roll across.

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I wanted more puzzles. I wanted fewer resources. Alternate paths. Characters to meet and assist. I wanted a co-operative partner like Lovers In A Dangerous Spacetime. If any one these could be added then my estimation of the game would sky-rocket. Yet sadly, as it is Far: Lone Sails falls neatly into the “experience” category rather than into the “Game” category and all I can really hope for is some planned content further down the line but for now this is definitely a title more suited for the mobile market.

OVERALL: 6.4/10 AVERAGE

Written by Michael Jones

(Disclaimer: CONQUEST received a review copy of Far: Lone Sails, however this does not in any way affect the scoring of a game or our thoughts on the game itself. We believe in total honesty and being transparent with you.)

Two Spin-Off Gears Of War Titles Announced

Alongside the announcement of GEARS 5 during the Xbox E3 2018 Media Briefing it was also announced that the series would be heading to new platforms. On mobile, expect GEARS POP! Coming in 2019 for iOS and Android devices.

Then a PC strategy game is also in the works called GEARS TACTICS. It is certainly an interesting time to be a Gears of War fan, for more E3 coverage, stay tuned.

Published by Rhys Baldwin.

Fallout Shelter Available On PS4 & Switch NOW

During Bethesda’s fourth annual E3 Showcase it was announced that the hit mobile, Xbox One and PC title Fallout Shelter would be releasing on PS4 and Nintendo Switch. It’s still free and it’s available right now. You can check out the original trailer from 2015 below.

For all your E3 coverage needs, stay tuned.

Published by Rhys Baldwin.

The Elder Scrolls: Blades Announced

During Bethesda’s E3 Showcase a brand new Elder Scrolls game was announced, but this time it’s for mobile. The Elder Scrolls Blades is releasing for iOS and Android later this year for FREE. The intention however is to bring it everywhere they can, including console, PC and VR.

It’s been described as a massive first-person RPG that features console quality graphics, with a uniquely mobile experience. It will have dungeons that are not just hand crafted but also procedurally generated too. Levelling and character customisation was highlighted during the trailer.

There are three modes, Abyss is the roguelike, endless dungeon. For PVP, then Arena is the mode to go and Town is the hub that contains all your story and questing needs. You will be able to visit other player’s towns and can play cross-platform with people on any platform.

Published by Rhys Baldwin.

 

Command & Conquer Rivals Mobile Game Announced

It was a surprise that during the EA Press Conference, there was a bit of a spotlight on the mobile scene. EA announced Command & Conquer Rivals for iOS and Android with a Pre-Alpha available today on Android devices.

“Command & Conquer: Rivals is a thrilling, competitive experience built to define Real-Time Strategy for Mobile. Featuring intense, 1v1 real-time matches with rival commanders, you test your skills in combat in the War for Tiberium. Master the battlefield with continuous control of your forces, crush your rivals, and lead your army to victory.”

For more E3 coverage, you can expect it all here at CONQUEST.

Published by Rhys Baldwin.

Pokemon Quest Out Now On Switch

Pokemon Quest has been announced for the Nintendo Switch and it has also been revealed that it is available today. If that wasn’t good enough, it’s free to start. The news came about at The Pokemon 2018 Video Game Press Conference.

Players will be able to face off against Pokemon in the wild and embark on exciting expeditions. It takes place on Tumblecube Island and is very reminiscent of Minecraft in terms of its cube visuals. You will be able to battle Pokemon, gather treasure and befriend Pokemon to form a team of up to three.

Special items called Power Stones can be used to strengthen your team and you will decide which characteristics your Pokemon will have.

Your team will move around on their own and will auto charge at enemies that cross their path. You will be able to control your party by tapping the Switch screen to make them move or attack.

A mobile version is also on the way later this summer.

Published by Rhys Baldwin.