Hover Review

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Posted October 9, 2018 by Cody Rostron in Comic Books

Developed by: Fusty Game

Published by: Plug In Digital

Release Date: Sep 20, 2018

Reviewed for Switch

Do you miss the days of grinding on railings and spray painting street signs in Tokyo-To, Well Hover might be the closest thing to cult classic Jet Set Radio since Its last release. And while it tries to stand on its own with its setting, the comparisons are very apparent. The gameplay loop is incredibly simple. You have a wide open map with a bunch of characters to interact with and when you do they give you varied types of missions somehow involving speed, either a race against others, against NPC’s, or a race against time.

Getting a handle on traversal can be tricky at first. It’s incredibly floaty, but intentionally so. It controls a bit like the first Infamous game on PS3, you’re able to jump around and climb walls, but sometimes the floaty controls can get in the way of the fluidity. But when it works right, it’s incredibly satisfying. Getting a good jump or a good grind can make you speed up and feel like your walking on clouds, and the second you hit the wrong angle or the wrong bounce it tends to suck the joy out of the traversal. More often than not my races were lost because either the controls didn’t work as I wanted them too or because I missed a jump.

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Hover covers a lot more ground when it comes to mission variety than you would think, it has races, but it also has delivery missions, keep away, and even a soccer-style game. And those are just the ones involving your speed others are spray painting propaganda posters or other area-specific ideas. It’s an excellent bite-sized mission structure that allows for either a one-off play session or the grinding that it takes to explore more.

Character designs are well done and fit this cyberpunk playground they’ve created. It reminds me of the mascot PS2 days with guys like Banjoo or Sly Cooper. Cartoon-like but built to stand out in a bright world. Also, each level of the city has it’s own feel. The very top is shiny and new, and the very bottom of the world is grungy and filled with trash. And since each level of the city is built on top of one another if you fall from the top district you can land in the bottom region which means you would typically have to spend the next ten minutes getting back to where you were original. But with the handy rewind button fixing mistakes (most of the time) is natural and harmless.

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The neon glow of orange and green lights along with its hypnotic soundtrack gives a great background to skate with. I have to say though; Hover is an underwhelming name to give a game. Especially one with this much pop and color surrounding it like this one. Some other odd decisions made are the fact that when I retry a course to either get a better time or failed it the first time I have to be teleported back to the quest giver and sit through the dialog over and over again. Including more than a few buttons prompts to do so. Also, why have a cursor for your menu system? what console game has ever benefited from having a cursor instead of standard button prompts.

Those annoyances don’t temper the game though. Those things all add up to be annoying alongside a delightful game at times. Picking up speed to then grind and gain even more can be an awesome feeling, and when you’re in that moment, it’s tough to imagine it any better than this control wise. It’s the surrounding mechanics that leave a bit to be desired. If you like Jet Set radio or even racing games I’d say check out Hover but be aware that it’s got a few holes that you might have to overlook.

7.1

Final Score


7.1/10

Pros

  • Mission Variety
  • Art Style
  • Speed

Cons

  • Floaty Controls
  • Parkour angles
  • Menus



About the Author

Cody Rostron

Writer, Graphic Designer, and Artist, But most importantly a huge nerd.