In the far-flung future, there are menaces to the Earth that are so vile that only a super-advanced robot can deal with them. These creatures, pulled from the yawning depths of some hideous black hole, chill the bones of anybody who dare speak their names, for these names are a thousand syllables long and can drive a man mad.
How do we destroy these pestilential menaces?
Hug them. Hug them to death.
You've got one hell of a silly concept, right here. You play the Hug Marine. Over the span of five levels, you are tasked with tracking down and hugging the SHIT out of five different aliens. Presumably these are some wicked bad dudes, but when you find them they're just kinda hanging out, so I guess a hug is all you need to reform 'em.
Or maybe your marine is just friendly with extraterrestrial life. Who knows.
Add it all up, throw in some gameplay, and you've got a platformer. Circumvent a variety of hostile environments and locate the aliens. Each time you find one, you get a little huggy screen, like so:
Aww. Heartwarming. Hug 'em all and the game's over, and you're told to go find someone else to hug. How tender.
Hug Marine's controls are incredibly tight. Like, you'll-have-a-hard-time-dying tight. The game relies on tiny platforms to provide hopping challenge, but your marine's semi-gliding ability whenever he falls off a platform renders even the toughest spots rather moot.
Simplistic. Though the environments of Hug Marine are diverse, each one is also rather sparse. There's a minimum of detail in each one. You'll spend so little time on the game that this approach is understandable.
Also: the Hug Marine. Many people have noted this, and I concur. He looks more like a ninja. Especially the way he runs. No need to change him, just... pointin' it out.
Hug Marine is a surprisingly robust game when it come to the soundtrack. Each level gets its own doom-and-dire ditty. None of them are terribly complex, and I bet an experienced musician could bang something similar in half an hour on GarageBand, but still. I'm totally cool with a separate song for each level. Thumbs up!
There are lots of perilous jumps in Hug Marine, but as I mentioned before, the controls make it way too easy to beat. I whipped through the five levels in less than ten minutes without dying once.
Difficulty ain't really the point of Hug Marine, that said. I'm pretty damn certain this game just wants to spread a love of hugging. If so, then, mission accomplished.
Hug Marine is an art game. It's much more EXPANSIVE than your average artsy title, but it still falls into that category. Consequently, it doesn't take long to beat, it doesn't feel like a full experience, and it has a definite message in mind.
Fortunately, that message is to go out into the world and hug people. That's a pretty cool message.
Hug Marine is a fun, goofy oddity. Play it once, beat it, you'll probably be content not to play it again. Either way, kudos to Failnaut for such a quirky idea.
PLAY HUG MARINE