Hugo: The Evil Mirror

a game by Namco Ltd.

Platform: GBA

Genre: Action

Hugo is a troll from Northern Europe who has been trapped in a magical mirror by his nemesis, the evil witch Scylla. Hugo's kids decide to save their father by retrieving the three broken pieces of the mirror that have been placed in different parts of the land. And I'm the reviewer who got to review this game.

Featuring poor graphics, and poor sound Hugo is a game that might have been popular about six years ago when expectations were considerably lower when it came to hand held games. What Hugo does have going for it is a mildly unique premise involving freezing bad guys and using their frozen carcasses to either make bigger ice blocks for gaining access to higher parts of the level OR creating even larger more powerful monsters in which to destroy in order to get the treasure contained within them. Bad guys are also generated in the Monster maker, sort of a little house that spits out bad guys every minute or so. Ignoring them for too long can create big problems with you trying to deal with many, many enemies, destroying them too early can result in you not having enough bad guys to freeze and stack (to get up high on the level).

With roughly 60 levels of gameplay, players will battle through the beaver fort stage the squirrel tree stage and the Viking stage in order to gain the pieces of the broken mirror. None of these 'worlds'? provide a distinct variance other then background and color. Hugo's children Trollerit, Trollerat and Trollerut each must overcome weapon wielding rodents, fantastical monsters and video game obscurity.

Hugo's children, like much of the game, are not much to look at. The level design is remedial at best and the poorly designed sprites are nothing short of bland. If memory serves me correctly, I believe this game came out on the PS1 several years ago. This being a direct port of that earlier version the game does have an opening CGI scene that doesn't look to bad but makes me wonder if the programmers had any sense of priority. If they had not had an opening scene, then maybe they could have pumped up the in-game action graphics some more.

The game essentially is a puzzle style game. Complete each level before time runs out (then another monster comes after you) and move on to the next level, eventually leading to a boss fight where you will then recover the mirror piece. Hugo isn't all that challenging and the graphics/sound are poor. The idea behind the freezing bad guys and turning them into stackable blocks is fairly cool (in a Lode Runner sort of way) but ultimately the game just doesn't hit even the lowest of marks.

Other games by
Namco Ltd.

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