Action Henk is an indie racing platformer developed by RageSquid. You play as Action Henk, a 90’s action figure who has let himself go a little bit over the years. It is your job to race against other action figures to prove that you are the best toy – I mean action figure
The first thing that pulled me into playing Action Henk is that it had a similar gameplay style to Sonic and SpeedRunners, both games that I love. Action Henk does not disappoint in this aspect, if you like Sonic and/or Speedrunners, get Action Henk right now! In Action Hank the aim of the game is to gain as much momentum as you can to get through the track in as best of a time as you can (although you do need to beat certain times to get a bronze, silver or gold medal) You run, jump and skid through the Hot Wheels esque track to reach the finish line. In later levels you are given a grappling hook style power-up which you use to swing through some of the track. The grappling hook is the old extra power-up you can get in this game, it is a very fun tool to use, but the game feels like many other power ups could have been included to change up how you play.
There are 9 different themed zones, each with 5 levels and an extra boss level. Each theme looks vastly different from each other and it is a lovely change of environment when you have just spent the past 100 deaths on the previous level. Each theme also has it’s own music, so you will not grow tired of the same song throughout the entirety of the game. The finishing boss battles are a race against another action figure, in this mode you do not try and beat a set time for a medal, you just need to beat the opponent (but your scores are recorded on a leaderboard, so getting a great time is always a good thing to strive for)
Action Henk has ghosts. Not the haunting, poltergeist kind, the helpful kind that gives you something to race against. You;ve seen them before, they are a semi-transparent character that run through the track to give you someone to race. The great thing about these ghosts is that they are customisable- you can race against the par time for bronze, silver or gold medal, so you know that if you beat the ghost, you earned the medal for whichever ghost you were racing. You can also race against your friends ghost (their best time) or your best time. You can even switch off ghosts completely. You also have the option to view the leaderboards for the world and watch an action replay of other people, however, you cannot seem to be able to race against their ghosts – which although I will never be able to beat them, it would have been a nice addition.
I found the progression of each level to be a little strange. The game starts off quite easy and remains quite easy up until the end, and then suddenly it seems to introduce new mechanics that I didn’t know how to do. Luckily I was able to watch someone else’s replay on the leaderboards to find out how to do it. (on the last theme there was this triple jump back-flip thing you have to do, which took me forever) I would have preferred a more stacked progression i.e. starting off easy, getting a bit hard, bit harder, hard, very hard.
Once you complete all the levels, which shouldn’t take you long (unless you go for gold on each level) then you may be bored playing this game. Actually, you won’t at all – this game has Workshop support with a built in map maker! At the time of writing this review, there are currently 207 custom user-made maps which will keep you entertained for a VERY long time. You can even try and make your own track!
Action Henk also includes a multiplayer feature, although I could never find another player to have a game with. There was 1 lobby open, but the person seemed to be away from their computer, so I easily beat them and got the achievement. It could have just been an off day, but at the time of writing there is currently 1 lobby open with 1 person -so maybe an off week? However, if you get a group of friends to play this with, it will be a blast, great party game!
Currently on Steam for £10.99, it is a little pricey when shown next to a similar game, Speedrunners (currently £6.99) but I still think the game is worth that price. Action Henk has wonderful graphics and the environmental scenery looks great. The music is catchy and since it changes style on each zone, you will not grow tired of it. It is a very fast paced, fun game and I’m sure that if you get it, you will have a blast. You can even grab a slightly discounted double pack to play with a friend! (or they can buy it themselves, the cheap b****rds)
Full Disclosure: We were given a copy of the game to be able to complete our review. This did not have an impact on our views of the game, nor did it have an impact on the review itself.
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