Gorgeous artwork, riveting sound, shimmering ghosts, sudden in –the- face encounters -and if you’re like me you’re gonna hold your breath and practically jump out of your skin as this excellent horror tale unfolds.
It all begins with a group of teen aged girls telling ghost stories around a campfire. The girls, nicely drawn and with considerable personality, are discussing two friends who barely escaped from a serial killer with a hook for a hand. The Hookman rides again in this dark tale as a young couple, Christine and Patrick, plan to spend a peaceful weekend in a cabin in the woods and are instead engulfed in a night of suspense and bone-chilling fear of some unknown presence there in the woods with them. Their cabin has been ransacked, their car gets a suspicious flat tire and the young couple is immersed immediately in a miasma of danger- unknown danger.
As usual, the girl does most of the work always present in a HOG and Christine is obliged to replace fuses, gather firewood, scare off a bobcat, frantically search for objects necessary to advance the game. Patrick at least changes the flat tire of their car and if you don’t know the procedure of replacing a flat you will! And you’ve got to find the lug nuts in a box of every conceivable type of nut on the planet. All of the hidden objects directly relate to the plot and help to advance it and the meshing of the hidden stuff with the plot is perfect. There are no jarring episodes of having to run somewhere, chasing down something that has nothing to do with anything except being hidden.
The mini-games are above average both as art and as puzzles. These are well integrated into the story and they are HARD. Complicated lock systems, slider puzzles, a broken decoder, a rusty punch card maker, a sabotaged radio, a telephone in several pieces, are waiting for your ingenuity. Repair them you must or you can’t advance. To assay the hint mechanism you have to collect unlit fireflies which are placed in the scenes at random and rather sparsely. You cannot skip a mini-game unless you collect three fireflies.
Hookman is classy. The only criticism I can make is that it’s a bit short. But it’s better to be short and sweet rather than long and boring. The second game in the series “Campfire Legends: The Babysitter” is also excellent and available as a download on Amazon. The Campfire Legends will be a trilogy, so a third game is in the works.
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