Hairy Tales is a puzzle platformer very much in the same vein as 8-bit classic Lemmings. This time though, the objective is to guide just one hairy character through a level, rather than the many Lemmings in the aforementioned title.
The obvious pastiche of Lemmings is pretty much the game’s biggest downfall – updating and changing a critically and commercially successful classic is always a step towards failure, especially for a young company such as this game’s developer, Arges Systems. Hairy Tales is their first offering and in all fairness it’s a solidly made game, the mechanics are, although slightly rudimentary, very effective.
The first area to cover is the graphics and art style of the game which are lagging 2 or 3 years behind most games released at this time, however this doesn’t really matter due to the fact that Hairy Tale’s main selling point lies within its puzzling gameplay.
The gameplay is, although solidly made and glitch free, simply not fun. At least not to gamers like myself, who are used to the tight framerates and controls of other indie games like Techno Kitten Adventure and Minecraft.
The game consists of directing your Hairy across a course which you can move blocks around to change entirely. This was a very interesting style, so it kept me playing for a few levels through the same intrigue experienced when first picking up Portal 2, however this faded very quickly after discovering how uninterestingly difficult the puzzles were. This is the problem with Hairy Tales as a whole – it’s packed full of excellent ideas but it simply isn’t fun.
I can’t blames Arges for trying, and I do think the game shows promise, but the developers need to find a way of combining their good ideas with fun gameplay.
In short, Hairy Tales is an interesting little puzzle game that just doesn’t deliver.