Friday, 1 October 2010

Review of Hydrophobia Trial game

The big selling point of Hydrophobia isn't the story. Set in the future, two factions fighting.

It's about water. Revolutionary new water physics and etc, etc. I was interested in this game for a couple of years, now it's out as an arcade game.

To be honest, that's for the best. Sometimes it seems like physics are the reason a game gets made, there's too much of a fuss around physics. I mean it's cool and everything, but fucking The Force Unleashed had all this shit about the physics of breakable objects. I didn't notice that shit at all whilst playing that game.

So fuck it, here's Hydrophobia for £10 on Arcade.

But you know, if the selling point of your game is the physics of water it's a good idea to show more than an 8 second long corridor of water in the fucking trial game, because I'm sure as shit not going to buy the game based on the dreadlocks of the main character, the Irish accent of the tech sidekick or the 1992 graphics/playability/storytelling.

Show me why the water physics are awesome. Let me wipe out a squad of 2nd rate Deus Ex terrorists by flooding a room with sea water. Give me a puzzle. Don't make me watch 10 minutes of boring cutscene and have me run up and down some stairs.

Despite the simplicity of everything I did, and how tedious I found it all, I approved of the details. The amount of climbing equipment strewn around the main character's apartment explains why she is so good at climbing around elevator shafts, for example. The hacking minigame was sort of nicely done too.

It's not a bad thing that this isn't a big budget game, but it seems like it's tried to pretend it is, and that isn't working for it. More water in the demo, and maybe I would have bought the whole thing.

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