Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Hugo's House of Horrors (MS-DOS)

Apparently everything in this game was created by just one guy. Though I'm already starting to get the impression that art might not have been their strongest skill.

Oh damn, that music... it's bad and it's getting worse. It sounds like something from an old Looney Tunes cartoon mixed with fairground music. It says 'sound on' in the top right so there must be a way to get rid of it.

That house actually looks quite good, assuming it's made for some pretty limited video hardware. The tree on the other hand... well, trees are difficult.

Pointing and clicking does nothing, but I managed to get Hugo over to the door using the arrow keys. Eventually. The guy seems to have a bit of trouble walking.

Pressing F1 brought up the menu, though the music mercifully stopped by itself before I could turn it off. I did find instructions there though, which is helpful. The game seems to be a text adventure hybrid.

"Open the door" didn't work. Neither did "look under the mat", "pick up the welcome mat" or "kick the door". I managed to pick up the pumpkin though, which is a start. Worth 2 points anyway.

I tried walking further down the street, but it seems I'm stuck on this screen.

"In total control of Hugo's destiny', my ass. He only does what he pleases, and when he ignores me he won't even tell me why. I thought climbing in through the window was a perfectly reasonable thing to try.


Of course, the key was in the pumpkin! Where else would they leave it?

Whatever. After typing "pick up key", "unlock door", "open door", and a bit of struggling with the arrow keys, I finally get Hugo inside the house.

Damn, I was worried the music would start up again for second. Hey, it's Dr Fred from Maniac Mansion! Or maybe not.

This place looks much bigger on the inside. I'm pretty sure you could fit the whole outside of the house inside this one room. Even the tree.

I'll start my quest to save Penelope by stealing that candle, then I'll go investigate the top floor.

I got the wardrobe open and found a thing, but I have no idea how to pick it up. He won't look at it, and I can't find a way to pick something up without knowing what it is. I made a few guesses then gave up and left it there.

Hugo doesn't seem too impressed with the bathroom. I make a mental note that someone's written '333' on the mirror, then move on to the next room.

I hope he's mistaking me for someone else. Still, that does look like an interesting box. I like the sliding glass door and the dangerous looking equipment wired to it.

Ah what the hell, I'll go climb inside. Maybe there'll be some money in it for me.

The green genie type guy pressed the wrong button and now I'm only half size. The professor stormed off with a headache so now I've been left solve this problem myself.

Maybe I could pull that table over and use it to stand on...


I managed to get back to my original boring height by yelling at the green guy until he finally managed to press the right button. Now I'm searching the ground floor of the house.

So far I'm doing pretty well, I've found a penknife and a dusty whistle. It's a shame I probably can't put the knife in the professor's machine and scale it up a bit. I'd feel a lot safer wandering around this house if I was wielding a comically oversized penknife.

Crap, wrong room. Suddenly this place is reminding me of the Addams Family. Or maybe the Shining.

With nothing else left that I can be bothered to do, I try typing "use the whistle". Then when that doesn't work I try typing "blow the whistle".

Well I guess I learned to never blow whistles in strange houses. Game over.

They probably should have cut to black before putting that message up, because Hugo's clearly not even slightly eaten. The dog walked up to him and now they're both just standing there, like they're waiting for something.

Oh right, there he goes. It just took him a while to realise he was meant to be dead.

I guess I should probably quit then. Next game.

1 comment:

  1. The Hugo games are hilarious these days because they are so terrible looking, but they were actually really popular on the Shareware scene when they were new. David's story writing is pretty good, and the puzzles are do-able, I don't remember any particularly batshit insane things like "unlock head with banana", though I do recall thinking it was all getting a bit old by the end of the 3rd game.

    These are pretty impressive when you consider they were made by one guy, probably with the MSDOS text editor and an awful C compiler on a 286 or something.


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