Today we will be reviewing the Android Interactive Fiction story Project Hyrax. The basic premise of the story is this: “A scientist has to travel back in time to search for his father, who’s lost in a prehistoric period due to a failed time experiment, and you must help him. He needs to venture deep into a primeval jungle to complete his mission. Is this just another search and rescue mission, or is there something else going on in the ancient world?”
First off, let me preface this review by saying, I was a huge fan of the American show “Quantum Leap” growing up. If you’ve never seen the show, do yourself a favor and check it out. That said, I was immediately hooked on the basic idea behind “Project Hyrax.” We have our main character, looking for their father, who is lost in another time and place. They must travel back in time to begin this rescue mission, and let’s just say things do not start off well for our hero.
Fans of the game Lifeline will immediately feel at home with Project Hyrax. We, as the player, are the only link back to the present day for our hero Robin, and it is our responsibility to keep Robin alive throughout their ordeal. I failed miserably at this my first playthrough, however, I am getting smarter as I play. A nice game mechanic that I really appreciate is, once I managed to kill off Robin with my horrible decision making, I did not have to start from the very beginning, or even last “checkpoint” and play through again. I simply had to go to my last decision, and pick the other one. This is pretty big, seeing as these genres of games often use the “Main character is Busy” mechanic, in which you must wait a random amount of time before they contact you again. Easily being able to go back and fix my mistake without investing a lot more time made the game flow easy, and made the experience much more fun!
I don’t want to give away too much of the plot, and in full disclosure, I am still playing through the game, however, I can say so far, I am really enjoying the story. While the story is good, there are times that the main character is sending so many messages, it is hard to keep up, and since the screen auto-scrolls for you, it can make it difficult to keep your position in the game text, however, this is a minor issue, and one that does not make or break the game.
The main character right now isn’t super likable like Taylor was in Lifeline, but in their defense, they just lost their father in a time-traveling experiment gone awry, and the start of the rescue does not go well. So, they are excused if they seem a little confrontational at times. I do feel a sense of urgency and the character is growing on me as the game progresses. I feel, in time, if I can manage to keep Robin alive long enough, we will become fast friends!
If you enjoy “real-time” texting survival games, do yourself a favor and check out Project Hyrax on the Google Play Store. It is also available on the Apple Store for you IOS guys and gals! It’s available for free, with ads, with the option to disable them for 99 cents, a very small price to pay for a dangerous, yet fun and exciting romp through space and time! Will Robin find their dad, and be able to return back to the present time? Will they be stuck in an unforgiving land, only to be slowly killed off by you, the sole link to present time? You’ll have to find out for yourself by downloading Project Hyrax today…seriously.. do it for Robin!