Metascore
29

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 12 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 12
  2. Negative: 10 out of 12
  1. Jul 31, 2012
    65
    An inexperienced team made some simple mistakes in Hoodwink, but well written, funny dialogues are accompanied by cleverly designed puzzles. [September 2012, p.78]
  2. Jul 16, 2012
    50
    Hoodwink establishes an interesting premise in a unique setting, but its ease and occasional frustrations spoil some of the fun in this (undisclosed) episodic debut.
  3. Sep 11, 2012
    40
    Hoodwink is a missed opportunity: it has original and exotic settings, but it lacks the basics of the adventure games.
  4. Jul 19, 2012
    40
    Hoodwink is a game that obviously plays it safe, by following the traditional point & click path. So don't expect any form of originality. That doesn't have to be a bad thing, but because this game suffers from many other annoying flaws. Like the disability to skip cutscenes and the presence of a main character that is a complete slowpoke, means you are better off using your detective skills elsewhere.
  5. 30
    There is some potential hidden in Hoodwink but it's all buried under a pile of amateurism from the developers, or did they enjoy creating illogical adventures? [Sept 2012]
  6. Jul 19, 2012
    30
    Hoodwink may look pretty, but beneath its lustrous sheen is a short, frustrating, illogical mess that ends before it has a chance to get going.
  7. Sep 25, 2012
    25
    It's not a game – just a prototype of one. And they charge money for that?!
  8. Aug 23, 2012
    25
    The cool art direction and quirky sci-fi world get squandered on some truly uninspired adventure gaming drudgery.
  9. Jul 24, 2012
    25
    Hoodwink is true to its title, since it's barely a game.
  10. Jul 26, 2012
    20
    Even as a tech demo it's pretty unimpressive, though the actual environments do catch the eye. It's certainly not worth the price. If you do feel like being annoyed for an hour, you'll have to grab it on Origin. It's an exclusive.
  11. Aug 31, 2012
    15
    Hoodwink's scenario is unusual and at the beginning, it looks interesting. That is the only good thing happening with this game, a title that sinks in a flood of disappointments that never stop appearing as one struggles through the game. [August 2012]
  12. Sep 19, 2012
    14
    Avoid. Run screaming. The funniest - and smartest - part of this game is the fact that the developers told you exactly what to expect when they named it. [Oct 2012, p.109]
User Score
2.8

Generally unfavorable reviews- based on 6 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 2
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 2
  3. Negative: 1 out of 2
  1. Aug 6, 2012
    4
    Simply walking around the world of Hoodwink is a chore- the walk cursor only appears intermittently, forcing you to click in several areas until you find the path that has been laid out by the developers... which is usually broken up by interactive objects, so you have to inch closer to them until the camera scrolls and you can click on the space of road directly after them.

    Michael walks rather slowly, but double-clicking will activate his running mode. Unfortunately our hero has a tendency to rubber-band back and forth on certain screens when running, taking longer to cover ground than simply walking. Some exits, such as the exit to the main plaza, are not actually marked. In almost every other room, hovering the cursor over exits immediately morphs the cursor into a door, letting you know there is an exit-- this is not the case for the exit to the plaza, which is a nondescript-looking landing that only displays the regular walking icon.

    Movement alone, however, is not the only obstacle the player must surmount. Hotspot recognition is extremely finicky, which is aggravated by very poor puzzle design. Developers nowadays must walk a thin line between avoiding the heights of insanity we've seen in some adventure game puzzles of ages past (use an inflatable rubber duck to rescue a key from a canal? The Longest Journey, I'm looking at you...) and avoiding serving everything to the player on a silver platter. Sadly, Hoodwink does serve things on a silver platter. An example of this is the first quest you come upon: As soon as you have escaped from Detective Pyre's office, you decide to talk to your hippie friend (Saffron) for advice on how to pull off your proposal. Her advice? You need to get some chocolates, make yourself smell good, and get your paws on a bouquet of roses.

    How difficult is it to achieve these goals? Not difficult at all. In fact, all you need to do is go up one floor, stroll around, and just pick things up as you find them. Two items require you to interact with one character and one element of the environment respectively, and the chocolates require you to find a certain individual in the plaza (and, of course, figure out where that exit is...) and that's it, the challenge is pretty much nonexistent. Later puzzles, such as the one involving a lantern, feel like filler to pad out the experience more than anything else and really don't flow well at all. Puzzles are not necessarily the backbone of adventure games- characters and settings are- but when you have them, they need to reinforce the experience instead of detracting from it.

    These glaring issues are a real shame, because the world of Hoodwink is fascinating. Although not explored at length, the quirky society with its odd denizens and rather black sense of humor do beg for your attention, and you'll be wanting to see more of it by the time the curtain comes down.

    The graphics are eccentrically unique, a blend of gritty dystopian and cartoony playfulness realized in cel-shaded 3D. Characters do make an impression with their personalities: a second-chancer robot who thinks he still has a stomach, a trash can who is trying to commit suicide by jumping into an incinerator, the anachronistically flower-powered Saffron, and of course your fiancée- the game has more than its share of excellent characterization, and this is the area where it truly shines. The universe is also positively bizarre- if anthropomorphic detectives and brain-carrying robots weren't enough, mutations have also affected flowers: Saffron's supply room is populated by a large carnivorous plant that guards over a crowd of dancing, anthropomorphic roses. Some good throwaway comedy lines can be heard in crowd scenes - but their impact is lessened when heard for the tenth time, repeated by different voice actors (a slight déjà vu of Oblivion's rather schizophrenic voice acting.) Perhaps one of my favorite lines comes from UniCorp's boys in blue, constantly and cheerfully reminding passersby that "Unlawfulness will be met with courteous and lethal response!"

    The music is more of a mixed bag- although the sparse soundtrack is stylistically appropriate to match the future-dystopia-meets-noir theme, traclks seem to be triggered at random and after long periods of silence with no discernible rhyme or reason: At one point a tune sprung up in the middle of a lengthy conversation with Saffron, and at least two themes were playing simultaneously when I entered her supply room.
    Full Review »
  2. Jul 15, 2012
    7
    Ok so this game has a great story, good voice acting and a really interesting and varied looking world basically everything that doesn't rely on technical programming. The problem is everything else, the interface is annoying, imprecise and unclear, the animations are average and the minigames are uninspired and difficult to complete only because of the bad interface. However as I said the story is excellent and a testament to the fact that despite the fact everything else was difficult I always wanted to find out what would happen next and I still do. If these guys can fix the tech problems then this game will be great and its worth playing just for the story and wonderful world. Full Review »