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Hook Worlds Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Carter Dotson on December 16th, 2010
Our rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar :: WORLDLY DELIGHTS
Hook Worlds is the latest grappling hook game from Rocketcat Games, featuring new variations on the endless modes introduced in Super QuickHook.
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Rocketcat Games Announces Hook Worlds

Posted by Carter Dotson on October 21st, 2010

Rocketcat Games have made a name for themselves in the iOS gaming scene with the popular and critically-acclaimed grappling hook games Hook Champ and Super QuickHook. While they are working on a 99 cent "top-down shooter/RPG" project," their next game returns to the grappling hook concept with Hook Worlds. Unlike Hook Champ and Super QuickHook's adventure levels, Hook Worlds is focused on endless levels, like the Avalanche mode from Super QuickHook. This means that you'll be swinging forward through levels, outrunning hazards chasing you, trying to keep from falling to your doom, while trying to advance as far as possible and collecting coins along the way.

The hook of Hook Worlds is that there will be multiple endless worlds to play through, each featuring a familiar character in the 'Hook' series universe, with their own gameplay twists. The initial launch version will have three worlds to play. The first is Curse of the Watcher, which has you playing as Theodore "Gramps" Hooker from Hook Champ and Super QuickHook, trying to outrun one of the demons (first seen in Hook Champ) and avoid being blasted by the demon's gigantic death laser. To help him, Gramps has the recharging rocket boots that will be familiar to veterans of the series. The other two modes will not feature the rocket boots, but have twists new to the series.

Hook Gunner has you playing as Zelle, who has a forward shooting gun available to take out obstructions and enemies in her way. The gun only features 6 shots, but recharges over a short amount of time. Finally, Cybergnome 202X has you playing as a gnome in a futuristic city, with the ability to switch gravity in midair, similar to Gravity Runner. This means that you can die by falling upwards. There appear to be icons that you can pick up to reverse your gravity in mid-air as well, which could help or be a hindrance towards further advancement. However, these 2 modes also appear to be experimenting with and expanding on the already familiar Hook series gameplay. Interestingly, while unconfirmed, it appears only Hook Gunner mode has coins in it, which could alleviate some of the concerns by Super QuickHook players that the Avalanche and Eruption modes were more focused on coin collection than on survival.

A trailer has been released showing off each mode briefly, with a promised release date of early November. Similar to Super QuickHook, early adopters will get "exclusive bonus content." The game will launch at 99 cents, and the developers have mentioned that additional worlds, and of course new hats for the characters, could be added post-release, as has been done with each of the previous Hook games in the series. Check out the recently released trailer below, and check out Rocketcat Games' Twitter account for new updates, and their blog for concept art and insight into the game's development.

Super QuickHook Review

Posted by Carter Dotson on June 18th, 2010
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad

Developer: Rocketcat Games
Price: $2.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 3G, iPad

Graphics / Sound Rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar
Game Controls Rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar
Gameplay Rating: starstarstarstarstar
Replay Value Rating: starstarstarstarstar


Super QuickHook is a sequel to Hook Champ, which had you playing as an explorer traversing caves with a grappling hook and other powerups collecting riches and trying to stay alive. Super QuickHook largely expands and refines its predecessor's concepts and controls, to the point where the game has become one of the best gaming experiences I have ever had on the iPhone.

Super QuickHook is all about swinging from your grappling hook to progress through the levels, although you also have limited-use rocket boots and a ground sliding ability to help you navigate the levels quickly. Unlike in Hook Champ, you have unlimited lives and aren't being chased by anything in the adventure levels, so you can experiment with exploring the levels at your own pace, and the game takes advantage of this by adding objectives to collect all the coins in a level and to find various secrets, as well as to top the developer's score, which requires both speedy completion times and the amassing of most if not all the coins in a level.

But what makes Super QuickHook really shine is its addictive new Avalanche mode, which has you trying to outrun an oncoming avalanche for as long as you can. This new endless mode is similar to Canabalt with over 60 level sections that appear randomly as you play. It behooves you to recognize when you are in a particular section, as coins are always present in the same locations, and you need the points the coins provide if you're trying to set high scores.

The grappling controls work exceptionally - you tap on the screen to fire a grappling hook in that direction, or on the side of the screen to fire a 45 degree rope in that direction. Super QuickHook features a fantastic graphical and musical style inspired by the 16-bit era of gaming, and you will see and hear elements that recall some of the great games of that time period. OpenFeint is integrated into the game's interface, allowing you to see global and friends leaderboards from within the game itself, and to challenge your friends to asynchronous ghost races. The only additional OpenFeint features I'd like to see would be the ability to race the ghost of anyone on the leaderboards, and cloud-based save syncing between devices.

But those are literally my only complaints about Super QuickHook. Rocketcat Games has refined the foundation that Hook Champ laid down into something truly wonderful with Super QuickHook. This is the kind of game that you pick up to play for a couple of minutes, then a couple more, then all of a sudden it's 3:00am and your battery is on its last throes. This is the kind of game you evangelize to all your friends to go out and buy at this very instant, as I believe you should do as well. Everything about this game comes together to form a near perfect package, and one that deserves to be in the pantheon of all-time great iPhone games.