So here we are again, yet another adventure game for the PC in a genre that has rekindled itself like a Hogwarts campfire. This time it is from indie games developers E-One Studio, and the name of the game is Hoodwink. The game is in a futuristic world where the last remaining company seems to control everything. In this game you will play Michael Bezzle, he is very much a lovable rogue/scoundrel who wants to change his ways and settle down with a girl, and we all know what happens when you want to do that… It usually spells trouble, and that’s what it does for Michael Bezzle. Somehow he finds himself in the middle of a government problem which means along the way, he becomes the problem as well.
The first thing you will notice about Hoodwink is the graphic style. It is cell shaded to give it that cartoon look and it does this very well. As you make your way around solving different puzzles you will get to see more and more of this world and let me tell you it looks amazing. You are really treated to some great graphical vistas, you really get the feeling that this world is rundown. A sort of mix between Blade runner and Mad Max. E-One Studios have really put a lot of hard working into their graphic style and I think it’s really paid off. With all the new adventure games coming out on the PC there seems to be an influx of old style Monkey Island looking games or 2D cartoon style games, there is nothing at all out there that looks like Hoodwink, which really helps it stand out in a very busy genre.
Game play in Hoodwink is very much as you would expect in a point and click adventure. You have your inventory for things that you pick up along the way. The inventory system they use is one of simplicity, there is an old style brown folder in the bottom right hand corner and when you click on that it will open, showing what you are carrying. Also there is a journal tab which again, when clicked on, will show you the puzzles you have done and also the puzzles you are working on. The puzzles themselves are very well put together and will keep you thinking or banging your head on your desk when you finally work out the puzzle, and wonder why it took you almost 2 hours to solve it.
One of the things that I enjoyed while playing Hoodwink was the music, they really captured the 1930’s style that you would link with a detective style game. Alongside the great music there is the voice acting while most of it is good there are moments where the cringe factor comes in, also there seems to be moments when you are playing the game and the music will just stop and you are left in silence walking around. However, these are only minor gripes.
Overall Hoodwink is a great game with a unique look and feel. If you enjoy the adventure genre (and you want another adventure game to add to your now bulging collection) you will not go wrong with Hoodwink, although with the genre getting so saturated at the moment this would have benefited from arriving a few months earlier.
Reviewed on PC
Windows® XP or Vista or Windows 7 (32/64 bit)
2.0 Ghz Intel Pentium IV or equivalent or AMD Athlon XP or equivalent
Windows XP – 512 MB RAM with dedicated memory video cards (1GB RAM required for shared memory video cards)
Windows Vista – 1GB RAM
Open GL 512 MB video card (nVidia 9xxxGT or equivalent) with Shader Model 3 and above support or equivalent and latest manufacturer drivers (see supported chipsets below)
Open AL compatible 16-bit sound card
1 GB of uncompressed free hard drive space (We recommend having 1 gigabyte of free space after installation)