Game Review: Haunted Hollow (Mobile)
A turn based strategy game that sees you pitted against another player (or AI) to create monsters & scare the local villagers with the winner decided by who has scared the most houses.
You start with a modest place on a hill overlooking a small village. The aim is build rooms for your mansion expanding it & opening up more options for different kinds of monsters. Each monster has a role to play with the weaker ghosts used for scaring, werewolves used to attack enemy players & zombies used to amass zombie hordes. Each monster has a number of moves it can make costing fear points.
Every round you are gifted a number of fear points to build rooms, expand rooms (expanded rooms will allow you create higher level monsters), move monsters, scare buildings & attack if necessary. You can earn more fear points by scaring whole neighbourhoods in the village.
However you have to be aware of enemy players who will be doing the same, as well as the village mob. The more buildings that are scared in the village, the higher the anger meter rises. When full the village will create a mob that will attack your monsters but also burn down any houses that have been successfully scared. This can often work in your favour as they will attack either side.
As the battle goes on you can level up & choose from a number of power-ups that might just swing the battle in your favour (although some are only unlocked with real money).
Strategy is so important, do you spend time building your mansion, expanding rooms so you can send out high level monsters or do you go straight on the attack scaring neighbourhoods & getting more fear points early on even though it will irk the mob & have them spawn quickly?
The mob can be defeated temporarily but it takes some work unless you’re throwing out level 3 monsters constantly.
It’s a lot of fun & very addictive even if it does lack any kind of single player story mode. Instead what you get are single games against an AI controlled opponent, a local ‘pass and play’ game against a friend or online play via Game Centre.
There are 3 houses to choose from, the Victorian, Mad Science & the Lost Temple. The last two require a certain amount of monsters to unlock which brings me to my first major complaint. After playing a number of Victorian levels I had every monster possible unlocked yet I couldn’t play Mad Science or the Lost Temple, I needed one more monster unlocked & it directs you to the shop where every new monster costs real money.
It is possible to unlock one without paying if you choose to sign up for a 2K account. Now the prices aren’t unreasonable with the highest priced being £1.49. You can save some money overall by buying them in packs (£2.29) or a Season Pass costing £5.99.
I take umbrage with this because the game isn’t free, it costs 79p. A small amount yes but two parts of the game are closed off to me unless I pay more or sign up to a 2K account. That is devious behaviour.
Thankfully the challenges add some much needed replay value to the game. These are set tasks for you to accomplish & increase in difficulty.
Addictive, fun & challenging…worth every penny even if the extra monster needed to play two mansions is behind a paywall/2K account creation.
The Final Score - 7/10