Part 2: A tutorial on railroading.
After resolving to find Bos
I'm not sure.
Figures that Hamtaro would agree to help someone before he even knows how hell do it. Still, thats what this meeting is for.
Seven colors ?
Well, at least they avoided it once.
Exactly! If I had seven items with those same seven colors
So, here we have our major quest for the game. Find seven items that Bo can use to restore his magical umbrella to its former glory.
But...theres something wrong with my umbrella. I think its bent
Bent! Ill be sure to look at it later! You can count on me when it comes to repairs!
Fair enough; I suppose Panda wont be joining in the search just yet.
I reckon Ive just had some sort of an idea. See yall later!
Sounds like fun! Lets go, too!
Well, why dont we try looking somewhere, too, Penelope?
Looks like everyone else is gone.
...Well, there goes most of our hampower. Still, I suppose we need someone to go out and find the plot hooks for the later ingredients, and we cant have too many party members too early!
Oh hey, look whos out of bed. Guess that helmet of yours helped absorb the blow, huh?
Nice save there, Boss.
Well, you see
I said I was sorry! Mommy! Daddy!
You see, Bo was And then you So, you see?
Aaaand fade out again. The game designers are generally pretty merciful about sparing the player recaps.
In order to make a rainbow, you need to find seven ingredients.
...More or less.
Hamtaro, Im going to look for an ingredient!
Aha! Oxnard, you sly dog, you.
And just like that, were reduced to just five hamsters standing around the table. And since Bo isnt likely to be of much use
Everyone! I already know what the orange ingredient is!
Really? Well, Boss, what could it be?
Bijou, the orange ingredient is
Gee, you dont say. Clearly were getting softballed into this quest, which is why we arent doing the logical thing and starting with red.
Heh heh heh
That certainly is some interesting logic youve got there, Boss.
Well, I suppose we dont really have any better leads, so
Dont worry, Bijou. Ill be back in no time!
See ya! Bye!
And then Boss rushes off out to Sunny Peak.
It may not be too likely, but it certainly sounds like the sort of folklore someone would come up with
Perhaps we can stop him from wasting too much time out there.
And with that, the scene ends and our first real bit of gameplay begins! We can wander and explore to our hearts content, so long as we dont encounter any obstacles that need more than these three Ham-Hams to overcome. So lets start by poking around the Clubhouse a bit.
Obviously, Boss came out of his own room. I dont believe theres any way in here, so how about we take a look at the TV instead?
Try something new for a change. Branch out and try something new for a change. Push yourself.
The second luckiest for today is...Libra. I feel that you just might get that sticker you havent found yet.♪
The luckiest one for today is...Pisces. Its time to make a confession! Who knows? It might just lead to love!
Today will not be very good for...Gemini. Small things may get you into big trouble. The park is a lucky place.
Hamstarr is the only show on throughout the game, and his fortunes are basically just random. Quillpaws info segments from the Heartbreak LP told us that Panda is an Aries, none of the Clubhouse crew is a Libra, Penelope is a Pisces, and Stan and Sandy are Gemini (because of course they are).
Perhaps Ill start each new chapter with a fortune from Hamstarr, so you can all see what he has to say about your starsigns.
Ah, but its not just any blackboard! If you interact with it, and immediately after the dialogue box closes
Press L, R, A, B. Ta-da! Its a secret colouring-in page!
You see, the game comes with a selection of colouring-in pictures for the younger players. There are thirty in total, and five of them are hidden behind codes like this one. Im not actually sure how you learn these codes. They dont appear to be anywhere in-game that I can find.
We start off with Hamtaro as a freebie, and Secret Admirer is the one we just found.
The rest of the stuff in the Clubhouse is just a bunch of flavour text. Some of it is kind of interesting though, and the first visit to Sunny Peak wont take that long.
Postie delivers mail to all kinds of cool places!
It doesnt quite look finished.
Looks pretty much finished to me! Also, didnt he just arrive?
No surprises there, then.
We havent seen it yet on account of not just immediately running out the front door, but this is a pixelated version of the games actual map screen. It shouldnt be hard to see which places well be going in future even from this one.
Ah, and theres one more important Clubhouse fixture to look at.
Did you find the orange?
He may not be too helpful yet, but Snoozer continues to be the games hint system. And also asleep.
The slide is pointless, but fun. With that, I think its finally time we headed off after Boss.
Next stop, Sunny Peak!
The starting point is one screen west from where Bo crash-landed, which means this hole must be where Cappy came from last update. A nice bit of continuity.
So, lets immediately gave a NPC a heart attack.
Oh, great! Now the frog got away.
Were you playing with the frogs?
Uh, yeah...and I was just about to catch one, too.
...Well, that was pointless. Though at least he used more Ham-Chats than most folks.
Lets leave that dude to his frog cuddling or whatever.
I dont want to let my mom down. I wonder if theres a better spot to fish around here.
Given that youre standing on a log Ill probably need at some point, Id say almost certainly. Lets keep moving east
Were looking for Boss!
Have you seen Boss? We really need to find him!
You bet Ive seen bass! Bass, bass and more bass. Tons of bass! Ho ho!
... Not bass. We are talking about a Ham-Ham named Boss.
Oh, I see. Ummm Just now, a Ham-Ham passed by on his way over there. But is that the one you are looking for? Ummm
Lets go over there!
Boss must have jumped over the water to get across.
We need to find a log!
We clearly arent out of the tutorial yet. So, lets go solve that other guys problem as well as our own.
I can catch a ton of fish over there? Ok, Ill go right now!
And this has been Puzzle Solving 101.
Another quick Haaam! moment fixes the problem nicely.
This might turn out great for me and Mom. Thanks for telling me about it! Though its not much, heres some fishing line. Well...if you dont have a fishing pole, you cant fish! If you only had a stick pole to take its place!
Well, Im sure well be able to put this to good use later on. Its nice to actually have an inventory item too.
Next time Im here with Howdy, Ill have him clean it up!
If we continue on over to where Bijou was looking at the rainbow, theres nothing to see except some litterbugs leavings and Hamtaro refusing to clean it up himself.
Where we actually want to go is the path that was blocked off during the intro.
Hamha! Guess what? Ive figured out how to pull the carrot out of the ground. Ill teach you! You do want to hear how to do it, right?
This is the task tutorial. Basically, each party member is able to interact with the game environment in certain ways, and you cannot perform a task without the relevant Ham-Ham in your party.
This sunflower icon appears over the relevant characters head whenever you are near enough to a task. As you can see, Hamtaros task is picking carrots.
Each task has its own little quicktime event in order to successfully complete it, none of which are terribly difficult.
Successfully completing this task earns us our very first sticker. There are 451 stickers to find and collect in this game, with five levels of rarity. Tasks will always give you a one-star sticker.
If you look in the top left, we also get twenty sunflower points for completing a task. Earn one hundred, and you get either a three or four star sticker.
As for what you do with stickers They do have a minor purpose well see later, but theyre mainly just a fun little collectible.
I wasnt able to climb it before because of the carrot. Im glad its gone!
Moving onwards and upwards! To unexplored territory!
Ah, more NPCs to chat to. Lets see whats up.
All three of the grey-ish hamsters have the same portrait.
Nothing beats food after working in the mountains!
Todays lunch is orange-flavored sunflower seeds!
Mom always makes the most delicious lunches!
What?! Did you say orange?
Oh, so Boss came to the right place, but for the wrong reason. Hey, whatever works!
The sun turning into an orange! Ha ha! You say some silly things. Ha hahahaha!♪
Im sure an orange tree is on the other side of the river.
Oh, you mean this river? Its not exactly a long trip.
Ah, yes. The ability to swim is rather rare among hamsters. Enough so that we only met one who could swim in the last game.
But that also means Boss has not made it over to the other side, either.
Lets go look again.
But as soon as we take a step to the right
Ah, a bit of vine-swinging! In Heartbreak, the command for this was Clingie.
Nope, we cant reach even when Maxwell jumps for it.
Huh Without Boss, we cant reach it.
Well, time to poke around a little more on this side of the river then.
Ah! I hear Bosss voice!
Ah, yes. We couldnt have climbed the tree before because the only way onto it is to the right of the hole, which is where the mountain workers were standing.
Speaking of the hole, we cant go in there yet. Tutorial mode is still in full effect until we get our first ingredient.
Moving on up a screen lets us find Boss rummaging around inside the tree, because thats totally where you find oranges.
Hey! Hamtaro, you guys came here, too?
Did you find an orange?
If we work together, we can reach the other side of the river!
Thats right! With Boss, we can stand on the and get across the river!
Wheres a slightly more sarcastic version of when you need it?
We heard that there was an orange around here somewhere.
Hm? You must be talking about me. Arent I a cute orange color?
It appears that we are wrong.
Were looking for the orange fruit, not you!
Ohh, I see. It should be on Sunny Peak somewhere. Just where was it?
Well, that conversation was entirely pointless. Seems that orange hamster is only here to get in our way Still, better go help Boss up.
Boss! Are you OK?
Daa ha ha! Im fine. Im fine! Just fine!
Now lets go! Follow me!
And now were four Ham-Hams strong! Boss is also taking the lead for now, not that it affects anything much.
The important thing is that were able to cross the river now! We did manage to break the vine though
A nearby NPC informs us about Bijous task, plucking the petals from flowers. It almost never comes up, but shes going to spend a lot of time in the party regardless.
Likes. Likes me not. Likes. Likes me not.
Likes. Likes me not.
Heke? Bijou, whats the matter?
Ohhh, its OK! Dont be too worried about it.
Oh, my heart. Whether this flower produces a Likes or Likes me not is random, and it seems weve been a bit unlucky. Hopefully it will have a better result next time.
My brothers are gathering nuts and dont want to be bothered! Were finding all kinds of stuff on this peak!
Further west, the game makes sure we stay on track yet again.
Oh, cmon now. This is just getting ridiculous.
The hamster here just wonders who blocked the road, and hints at our path to progress
Heading back a screen and on down the vine (past the flower Bijou plucked the petals from), we finally come to the other major part of this game. The NPC is of course there to tutorialise us, but to put it simply
This game is to minigames what Professor Layton is to puzzles. That is to say, theres a number of minigames you have to do to progress the plot, and a whole lot of optional ones you can find by poking around in the right places. Theres always a signpost nearby, and ones with sunflowers on them havent been done before.
In order to play a given minigame, you have to have the right Ham-Ham in your party. Boss tends to get strength-related challenges, Maxwell gets intellectual problems, and so forth. Hamtaro gets to try this first one on account of being the main character.
Approaching a minigame opens up a menu to Start, Quit, view the Controls, read Tips and to Skip the minigame if youre having severe trouble with one. (You need a certain consumable item to skip a minigame though, so we must press forward in this instance.) Tips and Controls are basically must-read for the first encounter with a given minigame type.
Being the first of many, many minigames means that Lily Pad Row 1 is incredibly easy. Failing a minigame gives you a one-star sticker as a consolation prize, while success earns you a two-star sticker and some sunflower points. How many depends on the minigame, some of them even offering bonus points for good performances.
And with that, weve overcome our first minigame! This update is already pretty lengthy compared to the first one, but Id like to close out this first Sunny Peak visit before finishing up.
I hear theres another Ham-Ham whos a tree-nut, too. What kind of Ham-Ham could it be? I hope we can meet.
Seedric here is one of Cappys friends, and the victim of one of the villains schemes from Heartbreak. Hopefully hell get to meet whoever this fellow tree-nut happens to be.
Heading up the vine on this side of the lily pads takes us past the blockade to
Wow, good thing somebody left one single orange on this tree, or wed be completely hosed.
Thats great! Its an orange!
Im glad we finally found it!
You can always count on me! Right, Bijou?
Huh?! What are you doing, Hamtaro?
Im climbing the tree to get the orange!
Sorry, Boss. You werent quick enough on this one.
What am I gonna do with him?
Well...we should just stay here and catch the orange.
Good idea! Lets stay here and catch it!
You bet I am, Bijou!
Of course Ill catch it. No sweat!
Orange Catch is a one-time minigame, as a few of the plot ones tend to be. While it looks like it should give more points for catching the orange the first time, its only worth 20 points no matter what.
See! Just like I said, right, Hamtaro?
Actually, you said the sun turned into an orange!♪
I said Sunny Peak, and weve got an orange, dont we?
Hes right! Boss said all along that the orange was on Sunny Peak!
I have to say, I like that Maxwell let that one go and just went along with everyone else.
Ha ha! I just did what came naturally.
Awww Youre embarrassing me with talk like that.♪
Awww Ha ha!♪ Bijou!
Guys got it bad.
We have to work fast so Bo can return to Rainbow Land. We Ham-Hams will have to work hard!
OK, everyone! Lets go hand the orange to Bo!
And as we fade out on Sunny Peak, well take a look at what happens when we take an ingredient back to Bo next time.