Monochrome landscapes are often evocative things, a sign of a land with something gone wrong that it is generally down to the player to set right. In Hue that holds true as well, while also serving a more obvious purpose of providing a fixed and stable viewpoint for the colour based puzzling the game hinges on.
Our lead character is tasked with tracking down his missing mother who, in her scientific dabbling to help flood the land with colour for its inhabitants, has ended up disappearing in a blaze of colour. Clearly too much of a good thing can be bad.
Starting out in a drab and rather deserted village, our hero has to venture through the surrounding areas solving puzzles and unlocking colours to help him progress. The central conceit is an easy one to understand, but trickier to master, as each new shade is added to a colour wheel which can change the background into the desired tone at the click of a button.
The thrust of the game is therefore to switch between the available colours to open doors, move blocks, create platforms and so on, in order to progress. The more colours you find, and the more areas you unlock, then the more intricate the puzzles become. While the game never feels unfair it does take a significant difficulty leap towards its latter stages with some real headscratchers that require perfect planning and good timing to pull off. So for those with little patience this may not be the game for them.
That aside the game oozes charm, and each new area and colour adds a new layer of challenge and fun to the game. The soundtrack is extremely well done and adds a perky feel to everything too, which is always a help - why is it that so many indie games absolutely nail the sound of the game? It's a pleasant mystery.
Hue is a mix up of platforming and puzzle styles that you may have seen before, but with a unique colour based mechanic that makes solving some of the end game content EXTREMELY satisfying. There is nothing like making a split second breakthrough that leads to success, after a whole host of failures, to make you feel invincible and Hue delivers a lot of such moments. It's a wonderful example of puzzling done right in so many ways.