Back in December, Rocketcat Games released their third grappling hook-themed game Hook Worlds [99¢] into the App Store, following their previous excellent efforts Hook Champ [$2.99/Lite] and Super QuickHook [$2.99]. We liked Hook Worlds an awful lot in our review as it essentially contained four separate endless running games in one package, all based around a novel hooking mechanic. Well, people who bought the game the first weekend received four worlds anyway, as the fourth world was a bonus addition for early adopters of the game.
Late-comers fear not, however, as the latest update to Hook Worlds makes available this special fourth world to all owners of the game. It’s a good thing too, as the fourth world is easily my favorite. The graphics are based on Atari 2600-era games, with extremely basic and blocky graphics, and the gameplay is loosely based on the original Hook Champ. It’s so simple and so elegant, distilling the hooking formula down to its bare essentials, that I find it to be my most played world in the entire game. You’ll have to work for it though, as non-early adopters must earn at least a Silver medal in any of the regular three worlds to unlock the fourth.
Other additions in this meaty update include Game Center support, enhanced visuals for the Retina Display, fast-app switching, and loads of new gear for the characters. Some of these new hats, hooks, and costumes are a free addition to the game but you can also buy a pack of gear for each of the characters as IAP. Each character pack costs 99¢ and adds a number of new items to choose from. It should also be noted that these items are cosmetic only and in no way affect the gameplay, and are entirely optional if you wish to support the development of Rocketcat’s games.
As a huge fan of Hook Champ and Super QuickHook, I can’t recommend Hook Worlds enough. It offers a ton of content, gameplay, and production value for the price. That said, I have definitely heard from players in our forums and elsewhere who have had a difficult time getting the hang of Rocketcat’s hooking games. With that in mind, Hook Worlds is still recommended as it’s a great entry point into the hooking genre. The controls have been simplified to just two buttons so it’s easily the most approachable of the three, and the low price point means there’s not a lot of risk if you decide it’s just not for you. If you end up liking it you can always upgrade to their previous games which offer much more complex gameplay.
Note: There have been a couple of minor hiccups with this latest update that you should be aware of. A menu display bug has crept in there, and for now this can be fixed by turning the screen flip to “off” in the options screen. Also there have been some quirks with uploading score and achievement information to Game Center, though I personally haven’t encountered this. Rocketcat is aware of these issues and is already addressing them with a patch that will be put out as soon as possible.