It’s been a while since I’ve written anything for Goshzilla, and I’m all torn up about it! I’m seriously doubled over in agony as I struggle to type out this article. I’m going to present you with the infamous sequel to the shareware adventure game Hugo’s House of Horrors. A game not only infamous for daring to actually follow up the weirdness of the first Hugo game, but for also being mercilessly difficult, especially compared to it’s predecessor. [break] If I wanted to justify my lengthy absence from this site as well as the crippling pain I am in, I could do so by saying that I’ve spent the last 8 months trying to beat this game without any help. But that would be a lie. I’m going to straight up admit to you right now that I had to look up walkthroughs for this game, because if I hadn’t, my girlfriend would have left me and I’d be living in the back of a van, scratching the words “Apparently our hero doesn’t understand what you mean” into my forehead with a rusty nail.
Hugo’s Whodunit takes our CGA-toned hero and his freshly rescued girlfriend and puts them on a plane to Europe for a nice relaxing MURDER MYSTERY. The couple is visiting the beautiful secluded cottage home of Hugo’s Great Uncle Horace. Not only is the change of scenery a welcome addition to the Hugo saga, we also get our first real look at Hugo’s girlfriend Penelope, who is now a fairly normal looking woman instead of a 7-foot-tall vaguely female silhouette. We’re treated with a somewhat familiar foyer where a “saucy French maid” insists you check out the bedroom you’ll be staying in. Being the rebel that I am, I refused, just to see what happens. The maid insists that you go to your room, and if you continue to ignore her long enough, she completely loses her shit. In fact, my refusal to play along caused a message from David Gray, the author of the game, to appear and let me know that I’m being a dick. I appreciate this kind of thing being in the game. It let me know pretty early on that there was going to be a few more layers behind what was on screen compared to the bare-bones affair that was the original Hugo game.
The graphics kind of half-improved. There are plenty of screens that look presentable and almost professional. They appear to be digitized photo images edited to fit into the game. However, walk over to the next screen, and suddenly you’re back in a hideous Hugo-land where it’s cool to abuse the “spray can” feature in your favorite DOS painting program.
Honestly, this may be the most frustrating adventure game ever made. I am up at night trying to decide whether I utterly despise it, or humbly respect it.
This is the longest and maybe the most interesting of all the Hugo games, but it may also be the least fun. All but the most devoted adventure game nerds should stay away!
P.S. Uncle Horace was never murdered. He was practicing for a play. =D