Hudson Hawk

by Special FX Software Ltd: James Bagley, Charles Davies, Keith Tinman
Ocean Software Ltd
Sinclair User Issue 133, March 1993   page(s) 19

Hudson Hawk may have been a bit of a duff film, but Hudson Hawk the game is really excellent. It's based on a series of major robberies and also involves solving some head scratchingly good puzzles. There are three levels, in the first, Hudson has to get his thieving mitts on Leonardo da Vinci's sculpture, the Storza Horse. The second is set in the Vatican, where a Hudson tries to make off with a Codex (one of Leonardo famous notebooks). The final level features a spooky old castle where a 'mirrored crystal' awaits is ripe for the picking.

Label: Hit Squad
Memory: 48K/128K
Price: £3.99 Tape
Reviewer: Mark Patterson

Overall: 87%

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Sinclair User Issue 118, December 1991   page(s) 33

Poor old Bruce Willis. He just hasn't been the same since the movie called Hudson Hawk was released.

Why? 'Cos some people hated it, some people involved in it tried to bury it in an undiscovered corner of Lapland whilst others who liked it are still undergoing severe electro convulsive therapy somewhere in a dug up corner of Lapland.

Under these circumstances I was wondering just how bad the game could be but I really should have been a weatherman, 'cos stone me with a ten ton boulder if Hudson Hawk hasn't ended up as one of the Spectrum surprises of the year! Equal measures of cuteness, firepower and brain power are all evident once you take up the stick.

For those of you unfamiliar with the film (or those of you who have recently awakened to find yourselves in a heavily populated corner of Lapland, Hudson is a famous international jewel thief who must break into so-called impregnable buildings and recover historical artefacts.

Level one sees Hudson tackling Rutherford's Auctioneers to gallop off with Leonardo Da Vinci's horse sculpture "Sforza". Level two involves absconding from the Vatican with Leonardo's famous sketch book 'The Codex' whilst in level three he enters Leonardo's castle to retrieve a mystical stone called "The Mirrored Crystal".

Hudson Hawk is horizontally scrolling mayhem. Our main man is represented by a very cute, smiling and sliding, black and white sprite - his enemies are all rather unusual. The first time each new one appears on screen it's guaranteed to make you laugh, especially the manic cycling clown and the bum biting dobermann. You must avoid them, collect money, negotiate alarms and traps and use your brain to solve end of level access puzzles.

Control is very precise - too precise al times! If you have a dodgy joystick, trying to complete the game could be more difficult and infuriating than attempting to cut down a conifer with a wet kipper. Sound fits well and the music track is worth a listen.

I was pleasantly surprised with this title, it's cute, it's funny and has lots of puzzle and shoot 'em up action. If you liked the film (and will be returning from Lapland in time for Christmas) you'll no doubt want to see this. If not I'd recommend it anyway, it might be a little confusing at first but it's got a depth and humour that unfortunately puts our Brucie's performance in the film to shame!

Label: Ocean
Memory: 48K/128K
Price: £10.99 Tape, £15.99 Disk
Reviewer: Big Al Dykes

GARTH: This really is a corker of a game! The combination of arcade action and brain poppin' puzzles is exactly right. Hudson Hawk is colourful, playable, and fun. THe best Spectrum film license this year!

Graphics: 89%
Sound: 80%
Playability: 91%
Lastability: 92%
Overall: 90%

Summary: Cute, playable, horizontally scrolling criminal high jinks in Rome. The wealth of funny enemies, hidden traps and puzzles in Hudson Hawk makes it well worth a look.

Award: Sinclair User Gold

Transcript by Chris Bourne

Sinclair User Issue 131, January 1993   page(s) 36

This time last year I was reclining on a hammock in SU Towers, twiddling my thumbs while mysterious veiled beauties fed me grapes and attended to my every whim and fancy. Then suddenly Garth Sumpter woke me up and told me Hudson Hawk had arrived.

At that moment I was less than excited at the prospect of looking at the game as the film was an incredible pile of old ants' droppings.

Once started though I couldn't stop playing the game for days. It was excellent. Right from the first puzzle (how to get in the window) through warding off kids on bikes, vicious thieves, nuns and monks of doom, avoiding electrocution and being laser frazzled, to eventually prancing off with the treasures of Rutherfords and the Vatican, Hudson Hawk is one hell of an enjoyable game.

Basically Hudson Hawk is a three leveller, starting off in an expensive and well guarded auctioneers where Bruce Willis has to steal Leonardo Da Vinci's famous 'Storza' horse sculpture. It then moves on to the Vatican where he tries to abscond with Leonardo's 'Codex', (a sketch book) and ends up (if you ever manage it) in an old castle where a 'mirrored crystal' lies waiting, ripe for Brucie's thieving tendencies.

The graphics are cute, chunky and detailed and the main sprite is a joy to behold. He's a little difficult to control due to a somewhat slippery pair of shoes but, although this will lead you into a few sticky situations, it never really impairs enjoyment. Sound is sparse but apt and the game has enough playability and hilarious features to ensure that you'll never get sick of it. Excellent dudes!!!!!

Label: Hit Squad
Memory: 48K/128K
Price: £3.99 Tape
Reviewer: Big Al Dykes

GARTH: Hudson Hawk was a flop at the movies and I half expected a flop on computer too. However I was pleasantly surprised by Ocean's top effort with this game. It deserved more attention than it got when first released and they should sell absolutely bags of it at this ridiculous price.

Graphics: 91%
Sound: 80%
Playability: 90%
Lastability: 91%
Overall: 91%

Summary: Hudson Hawk has always been, in my opinion, one of the most enjoyable Spectrum games of the last year or two. It has plenty of puzzles, plenty of variety, plenty of speed and more than enough levels to keep you going for a long time. A beauty and no mistake.

Award: Sinclair User Gold

Transcript by Chris Bourne

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