Monday, 14 October 2013

Hany on the Road (PC Engine)

Although it's not a beat em up, the easiest way to describe Hany on the Road would be "belt scroller", as belts and the scrolling thereof are a major element in this game.
In it, the player controllers a walking haniwa idol (which, you may be aware, have made many appearances
in videogames over the years) going along a series of long roads, avoiding gaps and enemies. The enemies tend to also be things associated with ancient Japan and Japanese folklore, such as dogu statues, cloud-riding oni, and so on. There are also some gimmick stages, such as one with an erupting volcano in the background, during which the player must avoid falling rocks while also traversing the gaps in the floor.
An interesting point is that the gaps don't kill the player on every stage: on some stages, falling through a gap leads to a hell-like secret stage (similar to certain points in the first two Splatterhouse games). The main hook of the game is that the stages are split into four scolling "belts", and on most stages, those belts scroll at different speeds.
The game is pretty fun in general, though it has a couple of bad points that might ruin it for you. The first is the fact that there are points items littered around the stages in the form of pots marked with question marks. The problem is that these pots give a random amount of points each time, making playing for score a waste of time (if you're interesting in playing for score on an ancient game no-one cares about). The second, much
bigger problem is the controls, which themselves have two problems. The way Hany moves has way too much momentum, stopping and turning a split-second after you tell him to, as if he's constantly on a slippy-slidy ice level and also, his kick attack is far too short range. This means that to defeat enemies, you kind of have to wait for them to come to you, then kick just before they hit you, and it makes hitting bosses far too difficult. There's also a weird little glitch regarding the blue potions which give an extra life on collection of 25: if you get a game over and then start a new game, the potion counter doesn't reset, meaning you start with however many you had when your previous game ended.
If you have the patience to overlook those faults, Hany in the Sky is a pretty fun game, and it does look nice, too. The control issues are the biggest shame, as if the movement was a bit tighter and the attack a bit more useful, this would probably be a minor classic in the field of action
games.

2 comments:

  1. This is the sequel to Hany in the Sky. I think that game is a bit better if less distinctive. Face was a weird company for sure.

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    1. ah, i knew they were from the same company, but didn't know whether to consider this a sequel, since the two games are so different to each other.

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