Hurry Up Hedgehog

How fast can you go?

Posted on March 31, 2008 at 1:53 pm by Ian Brown

Most of you will have no memory of the popular 1990s board game Igel Ärgern, and that would be because, as you can tell from the name, it wasn't released into the English market. However, Oxygen Games have decided to publish the videogame version of Igel Ärgern titled Hurry Up Hedgehog. As with most board game titles, the game is a strategy game that traditionally lasted around 30 minutes with multiple playable characters.

With the DS iteration of the much-loved Igel Ärgern the elements of strategy have remained in their entirety. Our little protagonists, a variety of wee hedgehogs have to simply be moved across the terrain of choice and reach the other side. Of course, this sounds easy, but when the rules and terrain's are taken into account the game can become a little harder.

The basic rules of Hurry Up Hedgehog are simple, there's a selection of multi-coloured hedgehogs on the left hand side of the screen. The point of the game to get them across to the right hand side, typically with one move per turn. However, to make it harder the terrain has many pitfalls and obstacles stopping the hedgehogs from being able to move across the board easily. Then when the way movement it taken into account, the game becomes that bit harder.

With each turn a row of the terrain will be highlighted and only the hedgehogs in that row will be able to move right, although all the other hedgehogs around can be moved up or down towards the highlighted row. But, if the player is able to move their hedgehog from an unselected row into a selected row they can then move right, which is effectively taking two turns in one.

That's not all of the rules though. If the highlighted row contains an enemy hedgehog then, in your turn, it must be moved one space to the right, but only if the player's own hedgehog is unable to move one space right. The selection of the row is done entirely at random, originally by rolling the die in the board game, in the DS iteration it's done by selecting an on-screen option.

Moreover, this is still only some of the basic rules. With multiple options before the game actually starts to further complicate things the game can actually be fairly challenging. Although much like a game of Othello, the game can completely turn around in a matter of a few moves and the game can end suddenly or be a long drawn out procedure.

In regards to the actual game in terms of looks, sounds and the way it plays it's fairly simple. That is after working out a very complicated menu system. At first the menu system looks fairly easy and uninspiring, but that's far from the case. Rather than having any of the descriptions on the touch screen, they're all on the top screen. However, to get the descriptions up it's required to touch the option that's desired, which then opens up said option. Causing some level of discomfort at the start of the game until the options have been memorised.

Yet, after figuring the menu system out the rest of the game is very easy to use. The descriptions may be poor, but the sensitivity and accuracy of the title certainly is not. Considering how touch screen intensive the game is, there are few errors in terms of menu selection. Since the majority of the menus are all pictorial, and not simple in style at all, it's impressive how accurate the selection are.

The graphics are nothing to shout about. The on screen hedgehogs look nothing like real hedgehogs and look like they could have come from a GBA game. The rest of the graphics in the game aren't poor, but they certainly are not mind blowing either. However, when you look at the title, the game content and the artwork this title is clearly being aimed initially towards a younger viewer. This means that graphics are not always the dominant selling feature, and because this demographic does not demand top-notch graphics they're not going to get it.

Albeit the graphics are nothing special, the few tracks of music that the game does contain are done well. Throughout the main game set there is no background music and the only noise is the sound effects of menus and character selection. The title and menu screen hold the majority of the minimal soundtracks.

Final Verdict - 7/10

For a game so predominantly marketed towards children, the title is actually fairly challenging and enjoyable. At the lower end of the price spectrum this is a great deal for people who played the original board game and for those who fancy a quick, fun little game.