This is the very first game review I have ever done. Why? Because of fond memories of racing home from school as fast as my little ten year old legs would carry me, just so I could get more "Hounded" playing time in before tea! I remember the thrill as my top dog "Injun Joe" would regularly be last out of the box and storm home strong blitzing the rest of the field across the post. I remember spending about an hour hitting the same 4 keystrokes over and over so I could lay about $2 million on a "dead cert" for a win.
I also, unfortunately, remember the agony as poor old Injun Joe started to fade from the peak of his career, only to be unceremoniously dragged to the pound after coming last in a heat.
Now, many years later I find this old chestnut on your site, and it brings a smile to my weathered, old face to know that I may once again relive the glory that was Injun Joe once again. I'm not sure how accurate my recollection of this game is, but I will try to be as concise as possible in pinpointing exactly what it was about this magical game that I want... nay, NEED to play it again.
First of all, I think this game
has the initial buzz of being able to bet on dog races. I'm not a gambler in "real" life, but it sure is fun to be given $20000 virtual cash and be let loose at the track. A safe bet on the favourite, or a few risky dollars on the outside chance. The choice is yours. There is a surprising amount of thrill that can be gained from cheering home your pick as he slowly creeps up the field.
After a while, the thrill of betting can get a little tired. Luckily that’s where the true beauty of this gem comes to the fore. Being able to purchase a dog after the end of each heat is a masterstroke of genius by the programmers. It gives you a real sense of connection to the little coloured pixels that represent your stable. It's enormous fun to watch the rise and fall of the many dogs you hopefully end up purchasing.
It's at this point in a review, that we normally talk about graphics and sound. I'm not sure how to approach this. Suffice to say that the little animated dogs give you a good idea of what’s happening, and the roar of the crowd is barely recognisable, but this doesn't stop the enjoyable thrill ride that is Hounded.
My Xbox is going to gather some dust for a while, I think...