HIVESWAP: Act 1

Monsters attack! Joey Claire is trapped in her house; her younger brother is trapped in his tree house and the dog is in the dog house. This point-and-click adventure starts by attempting a rescue.

Pros

HIVESWAP: Act 1 is hilarious. There are some serious themes surrounding the characters and story, but at the same time a lot of the dialogue, puzzles and solutions are simply hilarious.

Other than being funny, the story is also very interesting.

Joey Claire is the main character, but you get to play other characters as well.

There is a mix of different types of music, but they all fit nicely to their respective situations and sound great.

I really like the cartoony look of the game. It is not as colourful as Deponia, but the drawings look nice and are very well animated.

Wait! Was that Teddy Ruxpin? And a Popple and a Snork! When the game’s description mentioned “hyper-detailed environments”, they were not kidding. There are so many familiar things and even more unfamiliar things. Familiarity with the 80s and 90s probably helps with the enjoyment of the game.

Cons

HIVESWAP: Act 1 is a very short game. I know it is only the first act, but when the game ended after only 3 hours and 31 minutes, I still got frustrated. Frustrated because the story is so good and the other acts are not available yet. So, do not get HIVESWAP: Act 1 if you have an obsession with reaching the end of awesome stories… or if you want a game with a much longer play time.

Only some of the text can be progressed by pressing space. Others you must click the mouse button to continue. I wish I could use space to progress all texts.

Other Points

Either the puzzles were super easy or the clues were very obvious, I didn’t get stuck once.

There is no speech whatsoever. It is all written dialogue and descriptions. I did not put this as a con, because when playing the game, it just seemed normal and I did not think that speech was needed. It helps that the writing is superb with loads of humour. Then again, maybe it is because I grew up playing text adventures, that reading felt normal to me.

Biases

I played Deponia a bit before playing HIVESWAP: Act 1. Both of them reminded me of Sam & Max Hit the Road and The Curse of Monkey Island from long ago. I have played the entire Monkey Island series, but Curse was the only one that had the cartoon look.

I don’t know what Homestuck is, but I love this game anyway.

I played the Steam version of the game. The game is also available DRM-free from GOG.com.

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