Hurry Up Hedghog!ESRB:
Platform: Nintendo DS , DSI
Publisher: Oxygen Interactive
1-6 Wireless DS Multi-Card Play
When I received Hurry Up Hedgehog on my home office desk I didn’t have a clue what the game was about. From the front of the box it seemed that I was going to play another cute mascot type platformer, boy was I ever wrong. Hurry Up Hedgehog is actually based on a German board game that takes a bit of thinking now and then. I guess the adage is true, never judge a book by its book cover, or in this case, never judge a came by the front of its’ game case.
Visually, Hurry Up Hedgehog doesn’t push the DS hardware. The game is very colorful and vibrant and really does stand out on the screen. The hedgehogs are cute and very cartoonish, you definitely won’t get them confused with Sega’s spiky blue wonder. The game board is clear and concise and you’ll know where you have to go, after you figure out how to play. Overall the game’s graphics get the job done.
Audio wise, there is not a whole lot here for me to talk about. There are only a few tracks of music, which is not heard during the majority of the gameplay. The only noise you’ll hear during actual board play is the sound effects of character selection as well as when you navigate through the somewhat confusing menus. You’ll find that said music is mostly prevalent during the title and main menu screens. Oh well, it’s not a deal breaker, but some background music during play would have been nice.
Hurry Up Hedgehog is a puzzle racing mash-up with the cutest Hedgehogs around. Compete against others in races and puzzle competitions across a variety of garden levels. Lead your family and friends through the garden dodging hazards, out-maneuvering opponents and racing your hedgehogs to claim victory. The best way that I can explain how the game feels is that it is a bit backgammon or Othello with a hint of checkers thrown in for good luck.
So how do you play? Well, you start with four tokens and during every start of each turn a random row is chosen and highlighted. Once it is your turn you are given the chance to move one token vertically (up or down) and one token horizontally (left and right) along the chosen row. You can only move left or right if you are in the highlighted row. However, if it is your turn, and you are not in the highlighted row, you can move up or down to get to it. Should you be lucky enough to move into the highlighted area on one move, you can then move to the left or right. It is like you get a free bonus move.
Don’t be fooled my fellow readers, this is not the only thing to consider when playing Hurry Up Hedgehog. You have to be on the lookout for obstacles on the board (e.g. pits) as well as other hedgehogs that may block your way. Each of these things has their own implication for gameplay and you’ll have to follow some strict rules to move on. Your goal is to get three of your tokens to the other side of the board before anyone else.
The rules that you are first introduced are pretty basic, but you can choose from a series of multiple options before you get into a game to add specific challenges to your play time. There are five different ways to customize your rules which, believe it or not, allows for 32 unique ways to play. Who knew that a game that looked so cute on the front cover actually had this level of depth? You will find that a game can be over as quick as a blink of an eye or take quite some time for someone to become victorious.
My biggest complaint is the somewhat complicated menu system as well as a lack of a tutorial. In terms of the menu, I found myself kind of lost in the menu system. There is really no logic or easy way to navigate it. It can be a hit and miss affair and something I think that could have been improved upon. I also think that a tutorial is in order, as when I first started to play I didn’t have a clue to what I was doing. Trial and error was the way for me, but after awhile I did learn the ins and outs of the game. However, more detailed instructions would have been appreciated at first, and like I said, a tutorial would have even been better.
I did enjoy my time with the game. Sure, it is not the most engaging or the most addictive game I have ever played, but it still wasn’t that bad. Something I think maybe somewhat misleading is that the box art is cute, and the in-game hedgehogs are quite cartoony, this would lead one to believe that the game is aimed at a younger audience. Although some young kids should be able to pick up and play this game, not all of them will be able to, and I hope that they don’t get mislead by the box art or screen shots on the back, as the cuteness is just superficial, as underneath is a pretty hard game for some youngsters.
There is the ability to play with up to six other people, who happen to have a copy of the game. I would have loved to try this mode out, however I don’t know anyone else with the game so this mode remains untested by this writer.
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