The Freemium Frontier #1 – Hugo: Troll Race 2

My commute is often fucked.

Twice a week, I head to & from York University. The fastest and easiest way to get there takes a little over an hour, during which I consume podcasts and twiddle around with really lousy iOS games. I feel like I shouldn’t have to pay to have a bad time, so I typically just download whatever games are new and free. They’re universally terrible.

Hugo: Troll Race 2
I’ll admit – I missed out on Troll Race 1. I’ll bet it was an absolute dinger. Hugo: Troll Race 2 is worth about $5 less than what I paid for it, which is to say that I feel that I am owed $5. I’m always struck by the absolutely competent design work done on some of these games. Visually, this game is actually pretty well put together. The animation and visual design is somewhere around the level of a Playstation 2 game, not entirely dissimilar from a Spyro The Dragon or even a Kingdom Hearts. It makes me sad that presumably talented people put a substantial amount of work into this terrible, terrible piece of shit.

Hugo: Troll Race 2’s gameplay consists of a behind-the-troll “rail race”, as the titular Hugo jams on a manual railroad car collecting stars (because coins, rings and glowing orbs were all being used by other hideous creatures, I guess). You hop from track to track and over obstacles in order to grab as many stars and gems as possible without smashing into anything. Smash into something? You can keep going! …if you have 5 gems. Don’t have 5 gems? You can buy gems! With your real money! Lucky you!

Overall, this game reminds me of those “ring tunnel” levels that were introduced in Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Those weren’t fun when that game came out in 1992. The difference here is that it feels like you’re going slower, it’s constantly asking you for money and you’re not a 10-year old. Unless you are. In which case stop reading this because I’m about to use a swear.

This game is fucking terrible.


Author: markmeeks

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