A few days ago, we ran a review of HuniePop. Technology Tell’s writer had previously loved Akiba’s Trip: Undead & Undressed, and felt he was up to the challenge. He didn’t care for the game and gave it the score he felt it deserved. We received both censored and uncensored versions of the game, so I figured I would try the censored version of HuniePop and share my thoughts on the adventure.
My thoughts on HuniePop is that it’s all rather generic. The whole point is to give an excuse to see half naked, or in the uncensored version naked, women. Fine, some people like that. However, you also expect the rest of the game to offer something to make it at least somewhat compelling. Especially if someone is playing a censored version, as I was.
As far as match-3 puzzles go, it’s a subpar copycat of Puzzle & Dragons. I’m a huge fan of GungHo Online’s puzzle game and love how strategic it allows a player to be. With HuniePop, you can only move an icon along its vertical and horizontal columns. Moving it shifts other pieces, but I never saw this lead to any impressive combos, as one sees in games like Bejeweled or the aforementioned Puzzle & Dragons. It’s more tedious and plodding.
See where the mouse pointer is, in relation to the icon it is moving? The tracking is off. Every match I played seemed to take at least two minutes longer than it should, because the mouse positioning meant that I wasn’t swapping the gems I thought I was.
The scoring system doesn’t help. Every round of HuniePop feels rather tedious, because reaching the point threshold to move on takes longer than expected. Each match only grants a few points, and there are even matches that decrease the score, so a “date” can feel like it goes on forever. (Just like some real life dates, am I right?)
This happening in the tutorial and on the first few dates is a harbinger of things to come and, sure enough, HuniePop sets ridiculously high scores as the game progresses. Which defeats the whole purpose, since match-3 games are supposed to be quick and casual by definition. As anyone will tell you, a late-game level of Bejeweled or Puzzle and Dragons can take as much time as an early game one.
Though, I suspect the tedium was inserted as artificial difficulty. There is no way to fail at HuniePop. The only challenge is if you’re willing to sit there long enough to complete the dates with higher score goals. There are no time limits. Though you can lose points by matching broken hearts, you’ll never match enough, even purposely, to mess up a date. Drawing things out is key, I suppose, because the game would be ridiculously short if the match-3 system was more competent.
As a match-3 player, I have to recommend Puzzle and Dragons the free-to-play iOS and Android game, to anyone who would consider getting the censored version of HuniePop. The puzzle gameplay is much better. (And some of those monsters you’ll recruit even look a little sexier, too!)