Hue Review

Richard Walker

All too often indie games like Hue are described as 'darlings', what with all the charm and unique ideas. It's bandied about quite a lot. In Hue's case, it's impossible not to resort to such superlatives, what with all its charm and unique ideas. Beautiful to behold and wonderfully meditative to play, Hue pushes all of the right buttons with its colour-based puzzles that gradually increase in complexity as you progress.

I see your truuuue colours shining throoough! This is where it all begins.

A little bit like Limbo sporting a similarly glowing white-eyed protagonist, but who has all of the colours of the rainbow at his fingertips, Hue is a puzzle platformer in which your plucky protagonist starts his adventure in a monochrome world completely bereft of wondrous rainbow colours. It's your job to make your way from a small fishing village into mysterious subterranean tunnels and caves, looking for missing colours to add to your colour wheel that unlock new paths within this first hub area.

Hue's key gameplay conceit is simple. The colours you acquire can be cycled through using the right stick, and pushable crates, blocks and pieces of scenery can be blotted out by using the same colour to absorb it into the background. Blue crystals blocking your way? Turn the world blue and they'll sink away into the colour. Need to pass through purple bricks? Switch to purple and they'll disappear. The more colours you gain – and there are eight of them in total – the more complex Hue's puzzles become.

Initially, Hue seems really rather easy, but before too long it becomes pretty challenging, requiring a bit of dexterity as you make jumps and switch to the right colour so you're able to land on the right platform. Holding the right stick to select a colour from Hue's wheel slows time down ever so slightly, which does buy you time to successfully make a tricky jump, but you'll probably still find yourself meeting a sticky end more than once. Spike pits and other hazards await: all you need to do is slip up.

Hue has a colourblind mode too, which is good.

On your journey to find Hue's missing mother, who thanks to her experiments in helping to see the world's inhabitants see beyond dreary greyscale has somehow become trapped within impossible colour, you'll also have coloured lasers to contend with, moving platforms, more traps, crumbling, precarious rocks to leap between and spiky motion-sensitive skulls that'll crush you to death if you're too slow.

Hue gradually becomes rather tough towards its latter parts - especially once coloured slime used to paint objects comes into play - which only serves to make the sense of satisfaction when you overcome a particularly taxing challenge, all the more sweet.

None of this is really reflected in the achievements, however, with a rather simplistic list that you'll probably be able to complete pretty quickly. Gamerscore is rewarded for simply gaining each of Hue's eight colours to complete the colour wheel, while the rest is assigned to completing the game, collecting all 28 of the hidden beakers, watching the credits and making 5000 obstacles disappear, which will happen fairly early on through natural progression anyway. Such an easy list does mean you just concentrate on enjoying the game, but it would have been nice to see a little more invention on show, all the same.

A beautifully stylish and engaging side-scrolling puzzle platformer with a lovely soundtrack to match, Hue is an indie game that you're not really going to want to miss. There are few other games much like it, obvious Limbo comparisons aside, with its neat colour-based gameplay MacGuffin and serene, reflective nature. It's just a nice game to sit and play, even if later into the game frustration can creep in a little bit. Hue is just really rather lovely and fully deserving of your time.


Hue is an attractive and appealing indie puzzle platformer with a smart gameplay hook. Yes, it looks and plays a little bit like Limbo, but Hue is very much its own thing. And it's great.

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Hue's soundtrack is incredibly soothing and the intermittent voice overs are delivered nicely. It all makes for a meditative, almost hypnotic experience.


A distinctive art style that starts out grey, but soon comes to life with glorious colour. Only eight colours, mind you. Nonetheless, Hue looks rather lovely.


Hue starts simple and gradually ramps up the complexity of its puzzles with a smooth learning curve that spikes a bit at the end with some fairly stiff challenges. It's a rewarding game, for sure. The colour wheel can sometimes seem a tad fiddly.


A good few hours of puzzly platformy goodness, with additional replayability that comes with revisiting certain areas using new colours you've acquired to collect hidden beakers. You'll get about 5-6 hours out of Hue at the very least.


Not the most imaginative or complicated achievement list. All you really need to do is complete the game, watch the credits and grab the collectibles. Job done.

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