Neighbours back From Hell – Review
Follow Genre: Adventure puzzle game
Developer: Farbworks, THQ Nordic
Publisher: HandyGames
Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
Tested on: PS4

Neighbours back From Hell – Review

Site Score
7.5
Good: Easy puzzle fun
Bad: Ugly to look at
User Score
7.6
(5 votes)
Click to vote
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Rating: 7.6/10 (5 votes cast)

Have you ever hated somebody so much you wanted to make their entire life a living hell? Maybe not, but Woody does. His neighbour is quite the character and Woody makes a living out of pranking him as much as he can. Cruel but hilarious, Neighbours back From Hell is a remastered edition of both the Neighbours From Hell games originally developed by JoWood. Farbworks and THQ Nordic have taken it upon themselves to rework the games for modern consoles with updated graphics and interface.

Story

Woody has found the perfect way to take out two birds with one stone. He can annoy his terrible neighbour while also earning a pretty buck by broadcasting the stunts in the form of a reality tv show. Why Woody hates his neighbour so much is never fully explained, though the opening cutscene establishes the two have a bad history of getting on each other’s nerves. If that excuses Woody’s habit of breaking into the neighbour’s house and placing boobytraps everywhere is up to the player.

Graphics

As mentioned above the remastered game got a full update in terms of graphics, making everything looks crisper than ever before. While this does not do much to make the animation itself any prettier – screenshots will show it’s a very unusual style which will not please everyone – they do run smoother than they used to, with added frame-rates and a clean user interface. The environments are a lot of fun too: where at first you stay at the house, you will eventually chase your neighbour across the globe to annoy him wherever he goes, making for some fun locations to explore.

Sound

The music in Neighbours back From Hell has a certain flair to it. Inspired by Big Band Jazz music, the soundtrack stays relatively similar to its originals, which is great since it worked there. No use changing a winning formula. There is no voice acting in the game as such, though the characters talk in an amusingly cartoonish gibberish. The show is stolen by the sound effects, however, which are always good for a laugh. Whether it’s explosive fireworks, slipping soap, or your neighbour pooping themselves after you slipped him laxatives, it all has the expected sounds to go with it.

Gameplay

Neighbours back From Hell is, in essence, an adventure puzzle game with a sneak mechanic. The challenge of each level is to prank your neighbour (and the people around him) a bunch of times without being caught. To this end, you will need to sneak around his house or other places to gather items and then use these items to construct boobytraps. Some of them are pretty simple and will only take a second, with your neighbour walking into them automatically. Others need a little more time to set up and you might need to lure your target into them. Every level has a set number of pranks you need to pull before you can move onto the next one, but doing all possible pranks in a level will award you with a golden trophy.

Your neighbour won’t take kindly to you sneaking around however and will beat you senseless if he catches you. You have three lives, so ample chances should you mess up somewhere. Keeping out of sight is done by hiding in convenient places such as inside closets, or simply by making sure you’re always in a different room. You can move the camera around freely, meaning that it’s easy to see what is going on even across the map. Your targets also follow a strict routine per level, always repeating the same actions and walking along the same paths. If you take a minute to memorize these routines, avoiding them becomes significantly easier.

While the game is not very hard, should you want to earn the max score each time, a little thinking will need to take place. Sometimes doing a certain boobytrap will cancel out your opportunity to do another, so strategy does come into play a little bit. In total the game has 26 levels, each getting significantly harder as you go.

Conclusion

While not the most complicated formula as far as puzzle games go, Neighbours back From Hell has an entertaining premise you don’t see in video games often. The controls are super simple and the levels are relatively short, making this the ideal game to sit down and play in-between more story-driven adventures. And if nothing else, you are guaranteed to have a few laughs at your neighbour’s expense.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 7.6/10 (5 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
Neighbours back From Hell - Review, 7.6 out of 10 based on 5 ratings
Jessica


Games are my escape and writing is my passion.

1 Comment

  1. […] to home sweet hell. As Woody, the vengeful star protagonist of Neighbours back From Hell, you will prank your way through Seasons 1 and 2 of the fictitious, but aptly named TV show. Take […]

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