Author Topic: RetroActive 42: Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure  (Read 2269 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Crimm

  • Get your unfiltered Bowsette here!
  • NWR Staff Pro
  • Score: 1147
    • View Profile
RetroActive 42: Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure
« on: May 13, 2018, 12:50:05 PM »
This is the takback thread for our RetroActive of Henry Hatsworth. Post your comments and thoughts here and we may use them on the show.
James Jones
Mondo Editor
Nintendo World Report

Offline ClexYoshi

  • Passionate Poster
  • Score: 14
    • View Profile
Re: RetroActive 42: Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure
« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2018, 07:22:23 PM »
Real talk; I picked this one up at a half-price books about 2 or 3 years back. Iremember trying to like it and on paper it sounds wonderful. I like Panel de Pon, and I like Megaman, so... really, what was my hold up?

Well, for starters, I remember wanting to stuff cotton in my ears every time I heard the Grunt-a-logue (that's a word I'm making up for that thing that Rare games would do where they'd play a little grunt-clip of some sort on every syllable of dialogue that would get printed on the screen as text). I remember thinking the levels were stretched out way too long, and I seem to remember some sort of platforming mechanic I didn't like... I think it was a fiddly wall jump or  something of the sort? I dunno, my memories are hazy on Henry Hatsworth, in all honesty.

Sadly, I did not get my 3DS modded for capture, and I'm not about to try and play Henry hatsworth through a view-finder. unless I play it through dubious methods, I will not be able to stream gameplay sessions or capture footage this time, folks.

Offline CDavis7M

  • Score: 0
    • View Profile
Re: RetroActive 42: Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure
« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2018, 03:52:55 PM »
I've been listening to older pre-3DS episodes of RFN (~225) and there was a lot of praise for this game.  I had been eyeing it for the past few weeks on ebay and this announcement just tipped me over the edge.  Looking forward to this retroactive.

Offline ClexYoshi

  • Passionate Poster
  • Score: 14
    • View Profile
Re: RetroActive 42: Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure
« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2018, 12:29:53 AM »
It took me playing exactly one level to remember why I didn't play that far into Henry Hatsworth and the Puzzling Adventure.

This game stylistically is grating. It honestly feels like a Gameloft game.  something about it SCREAMS that it's a super generic game trying to inject itself with personality it almost feels like a parody of a video game, like Wayforward's Catgirl Without Salad.

I love panel de pon as a standalone game, and that's.. honestly what I'd rather be playing the tiles look more satisfying, the effects when you clear tiles, and the fanfare you get for clearing tiles is so satisfying in the puzzle game this is clearly aping, but... it just feels so weird, especially since you can PAUSE THE GAME TO LOOK AT THE PUZZLE, THUS ELIMINATING ALL TENSION AND NEED TO THINK ON YOUR FEET.

I remember that Henry gets upgrades that maybe improve things? but otherwise it's a floaty platformer with button mash-y combat where you have to juggle enemies to get them to drop money to buy upgrades later. this is a weird sort of juggle-grind to have in a platformer.

the thing that really vexes me is that the game is mechanically sound and competently laid out level design wise. if you got rid of the impenetrable blandness of the British caricature characters done wrong and the GODAWFUL grating sound design in spots, you MIGHT have a game that's all right? but like, this game actively annoys me to play for any period of time beyond a few minutes. I think I was playing games at the time that were Henry Hatsworth's contemporary in the indie space that left more of an impression and didn't make me want to throw up any time the audio was on and dialogue was on screen.

Offline AbbottUltra

  • Score: 0
    • View Profile
Re: RetroActive 42: Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure
« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2018, 05:57:46 PM »
I saw a link for the Henry Hatsworth website on the back of the box (www.HenryHatsworth.com). The website seems to not exist anymore. Unfortunately, the domain is not available either. The Internet Archive only shows the front page because it requires a flash plugin. Apparently, it had the full game soundtrack there; which can now be found on Youtube. Though if they wanted us to appreciate the game's soundtrack they wouldn't have the grating noise of the characters "talking".

Offline ClexYoshi

  • Passionate Poster
  • Score: 14
    • View Profile
Re: RetroActive 42: Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2018, 05:12:23 AM »
I do not like this game's level design or combat. I do not like that they put enemies that camp ledges shooting projectiles that give you knockback over bottomless pits and go "Eh, they have a wall jump! they can figure it out!"

I do not like that the game encourages you to juggle enemies but not give you the ability to move forward while juggling enemies. it makes what already is a game with pacing issues between it's long levels and constant stop n' go gameplay between jumping down and playing super easy mode Panel de Pon and trudging along at Henry's slow pace. I wish he had attacks while running or that the big charge shots didn't require you to fire off rounds, then clear blocks in order to make them happen.

I wish this game didn't make me want to grind money to buy the 20million character upgrades for Henry, but I guess they gotta give you SOME reason for standing there juggling enemies like a tool.

Offline Evan_B

  • Give me Bowsette all day every day!
  • Score: 3
    • View Profile
    • Nerd Rage
Re: RetroActive 42: Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure
« Reply #6 on: May 20, 2018, 09:54:53 AM »
Yeah but on the other hand, you like La Mulana.
Really Passionate Gaming: Snobbish Articles from a Snobbish RPG fan.
My Backloggery
Quote from: Optimism Prime
the worst celebrity death of the year so far has been Evan_B's brain. rip

Offline ClexYoshi

  • Passionate Poster
  • Score: 14
    • View Profile
Re: RetroActive 42: Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2018, 06:41:08 AM »
La Mulana feels like it has a lot more purpose in it's level design and actually gives you a farming outlet if you get far enough in the game. Henry Hatsworth's level design often goes for "Put shielded enemy up on ledge so you have to awkwardly wall jump up and shoot them when they throw their spear." or "SURPRISE MONSTER CLOSET SECTION WHERE THE SCREEN LOCKS!" or "here's a blind jump downwards where death puts you back several minutes in the level because the checkpointing is of Super Mario Sunshine quality!"

Why does Henry take a lunge forward with his crouching attack? Everyting about crouching in this game feels bad. maybe I'd use the gun more if it didn't have an ammo meter that you lose the ammo for when you take too much damage?

This game actually fills me with salt every time I pick it up. I don't know if I'm insane because I KNOW Poeple liked this game, but like... there's SO much better you can do for a 2D Platformer on the DS! Heck, there's so much better if you want Panel De Pon gameplay on the DS!

Offline CDavis7M

  • Score: 0
    • View Profile
Re: RetroActive 42: Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure
« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2018, 12:05:05 PM »
Well, I got through the first area of the game and so far having fun with it.  I think the game does keep up the tension despite enabling you to "pause" the top screen. I'm often in the heat of battle in a mob-rush screen, working on my melee combo while moving out of range of enemies approaching from behind. But then I notice my blocks on the lower screen starting to rise up. I want to take care of the blocks but I'm also in the middle of a melee combo.  It's easy enough to switch to the puzzle, but when you switch back to the platforming screen you can get mixed up if you left in a bad spot. This creates a fun rush of tension for me.

I love the mixture of puzzle games with another genre.  The only other game I've seen that does this is Puzzle and Dragons (Puzzle + RPG leveling, stats, and party building).  Anyone know of any other mixed-genre puzzle games like these ones?

Offline ClexYoshi

  • Passionate Poster
  • Score: 14
    • View Profile
Re: RetroActive 42: Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure
« Reply #9 on: May 25, 2018, 06:16:35 PM »
Well, CDavis7M, Wario's Woods jumps out at me a bit in that it's a puzzle game that rather than control the pieces directly, you control them via running around as Toad while Birdo and Wario try to shower you in new pieces, which always made it feel like this puzzle game with a slight platforming emphasis.

Sonic Mania has a part where the game momentarily stops for a bout of Puyo Puyo because Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine was a thing that happened.

I'd probably say something in the vein of the Puzzle Fighter stuff would be what you're looking for, but that's more a VS. Puzzle game with some fighting game flavoring more than any actual fighting game type mechanics.

sadly, I think your best bet is probably looking into the indie space or the mobile space. Puzzle Quest came before Puzzle & Dragon, which... yeah. not a lot of 'innovation between those, heh.




As for me, I think I might be done with Henry Hatsworth and the Puzzling Adventure. I do not find it fun, simple as that. The platforming is rudimentary and plodding, there's a godawful focus on combat where enemies take way too much damage and are placed to be as frustrating as possible to remove. maybe this would be more acceptable with better checkpointing or if the game had a better sense of flow to it, but it has neither of those. If I were making this game, I probably would have removed the cash shop stuff and put the onus of damage upgrades entirely on building up combos and chains in the puzzle, and not just to fill a dumb meter.

Offline ejamer

  • Mop it up's evil annoyance
  • Score: 17
    • View Profile
Re: RetroActive 42: Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure
« Reply #10 on: June 06, 2018, 05:46:53 AM »
I liked the idea of this game quite a bit, but have to agree with ClexYoshi that the level design late in the game gets super cheap and lazy... enough so that I stopped playing just before the last level and simply didn't care. (This is rare for me; normally I'm the kind of gamer who focuses on one game at a time and pushes through content he doesn't like out of pure stubbornness. Not here.)


What Henry Hatsworth reminds me of most is Monster Story - another game with attractive art, neat ideas about mixing genres, and solid programming that was ultimately let down by terrible level design. Were these games made by the same studio?
NNID: ejamer

Offline ClexYoshi

  • Passionate Poster
  • Score: 14
    • View Profile
Re: RetroActive 42: Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure
« Reply #11 on: June 07, 2018, 09:19:24 PM »
They most certainly are, Ejamer. They also made Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion on 3DS.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2018, 04:49:44 AM by ClexYoshi »