Hysteria Hospital: Emergency Ward Wii Review
You’re probably thinking that Hysteria Hospital: Emergency Ward is a lot like Bullfrog’s Theme Hospital from 1997, and whilst it does share some of its ideas, it’s actually something entirely different.
Whereas Theme Hospital was a business sim, Hysteria Hospital is more about fast paced fun as opposed to sorting out finances. The game does dabble in this area, though it doesn’t go any further than increasing the funds to make the hospital staff more efficient and adding/selling equipment.
As a male or female nurse, you’ll be carrying out as many tasks as you can to keep the hospital running smooth: tending to patients, buying new resources and dealing with the funds. When patients arrive, you use a pointer to carry them over to the reception desk, then, following a quick look-over, an image in a thought bubble over their heads signals where they need to be moved to next.
You’ll also have to direct your nurse to carry prescriptions from the desk to the waiting patients, clean up the beds after patients leave (hopefully happy and healthy) the hospital, and fix broken down equipment. Indeed, basically you’re expected to be super nurse, and you’ll need to make use of those cups of coffee that appear from time to time, as the caffeine kick will make your nurse work at a much quicker speed, allowing you to treat all those sick people sooner.
So far so good, and whilst the game is initially fun and keeps you on your toes at all times, as things stay pretty much the same throughout, the game quickly becomes too repetitive for its own good. It also has to be said that the pointer isn’t always as precise as you’d hope, and as the game is always played against the clock and requires you to be constantly queuing up tasks, it’s just not reliable enough.
Using the pointer efficiently is what is expected from you, as patients grow weary of waiting (they’ll walk out, and, whilst the game doesn’t say so, you may even have a death on your conscience) and each day requires you to meet certain goals. Later on, you’ll even be working in some hospitals that have two or three floors for you to contend with, which, with unreliable pointer and all, is as stressful as you could imagine (so much so that you might just become a patient of another kind, one belonging to a mental hospital).
Like Theme Hospital, the game doesn’t take itself seriously. The animations of the patients being tended to are humorous, and the voice over the loudspeaker can be quite amusing at times. It does have personality, although it may very well owe its existence to Bullfrog’s game.
Hysteria Hospital: Emergency Ward starts off promising enough, although the repetition and occasionally unreliable controls soon began to gnaw away at my enjoyment. Perhaps a longer stay in development hospital would have cured it of its problems.