Hohokum is, to us, a primary example of why the PlayStation brand is so exciting to gamers. Sure, we've all heard about the Indie support Sony are providing to the games community (unlike Nintendo and Microsoft who are reluctant to support indie developers), but Sony also likes to take risks with their own games.
In recent years Sony have pushed a lot of smaller, download-only titles including titles such as LocoRoco, Patapon, EchoChrome and The Last Guy from Sony's own studios while third parties have delivered critically acclaimed titles such as Super Stardust HD, Journey, Retro/Grade and Shatter - games that could hardly be called triple-A productions, but which manage to find a very vocal audience.
It's sort of an elephant, but not really.
It's not surprising then to see Hohokum put up as a focus for the PlayStation 4 announcement at the 2013 E3 show and with the game set for release somewhat early in the PS4's life (although we should note the game is also coming to PS3 and PSVita). It's bright, colourful, and looks to offer something quite unique to the system. This game, while being developed at Honeyslug in the UK, is also being developed in collaboration with artist Richard Hogg and Sony Santa Monica (yes, the guys behind God of War).
As the developers have confirmed Hohokum won't have a deep storyline, nor many set objectives through the game, but rather offers a non-linear game which provides a relaxing, explorable environment which the developers have described as a "playground".
Hohokum is due on PS4/PS3/PSVita in 2014.
In the game you control a snake-like creature called the "Long Mover" which can be sped up with a short speed boost, or slowed down while the Long Mover's colours change according to the direction it faces. On the PS4 the Dual Shock 4's touchpad can be used for controlling the Long Mover, as can the PSVita's touchscreen while the PS3 will use regular Dual Shock 3 controls.
The game does have sense of fl0w, Flower and Sound Shapes to it as the player will collect items as you go past them. In the underwater Sponge Land you collect fish, in the Kite Village it's seeds. It must be pointed out that as yet there are no details about any multiplayer or online modes.
Playing with the lights at night.
As you can see from the surrounding screens and video below this is a gorgeous looking title with a very similar bright colour scheme to LocoRoco. While nothing has been confirmed as yet we expect the PS4 version of the game to likely run at 1080p/60fps, but the PS3 and PSVita versions to either run at lower resolutions, or frame rates. Naturally it doesn't look the most complex title visually, so we don't expect any issues with any of the consoles running the game.
The Long Mover is carrying a lot of, ermm, things....
Audio in the game is being worked on by Ghostly International, an Independent record label based in America that primarily focuses on Electronic music. This music will play an integral part in the game as your actions can influence the layering of the music and songs.
With a release set for 2014 of all three of Sony's platforms there may be a little wait for Hohokum to be released, but it certainly looks like one to keep an eye on. Bright, colourful, and most importantly unique this is a game we're very keen to check out next year.
Below is a trailer for the PS4 version of Hohokum. Enjoy.