Surreal Scoop’s resident game reviewer, Nathan Billingsworth has recently left home and takes the opportunity that setting up a new place affords him for a spot of retro gaming.
“I recently moved into a flat of my own and it’s taken a bit of time for the broadband internet to get sorted,” said Billingsworth. “Being offline does not mean that I cannot game, in fact it gave me the opportunity to investigate some retro-games. Are these games from the past worth a look now?
“I tried out a spot of Hoovering. It is a very old game I’ve never previously considered , but something my mum has been playing for years. In addition it is something that has no online requirements at all. Although there is a specific hardware requirement of a Vacuum Cleaner, although this is a standalone device.
“The controls are reasonably easy to master. Basically you push a button to start and the same to finish. So far so good.
“I found that the whole rendering of the flat was very immersive and fairly realistic. I certainly had that feeling of being there. In fact at times it felt almost too real and the particle effects of the dust clouds from under the sofa were so convincing that I found myself almost ready to sneeze.”
“This was one area that definitely let the game down - the sound was a bit of a monotonous whine, mostly. There was some music but it was mostly drowned out by the whine that persisted throughout the game. The audio balance could have been better so as to bring the music to the foreground. Based on this I would recommend the use of headphones when playing Hoovering for any length of time.”
All in all I’d say this isn’t too bad. I am not sure I see in the game the kind of longevity that my mum has got out of it, She must have played it thousands of times, although I am told there are different rooms each with their own challenges, and the boss level of Stairs is quite difficult to master. I found a bonus level called “bathroom” that I hadn’t expected in the game, and there was a checkpoint issue when a glitch with the dust bag upgrade made me have to restart in the bedroom, which was very annoying.
OK, I suppose, to while away a few minutes at a time. It’s the kind of thing you might come back to for a nostalgia fix once a year or so, but definitely doesn’t ooze that “just one more go” feeling. I think even my mum has got bored of it and has turned to speed-running hoovering. She does tell me that I should also consider some further games in the same series such as “Laundry” but I think I’ll leave that to her.
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