The first Chicken Police game – Paint It Red! – was, despite its name, completely black and white. It worked to great effect, actually: it’s a noir thriller, so what’s better than a stylised monochrome palette? The black and white colour scheme did a great job of adding drama and atmosphere, and it looked stunning. Good thing that its upcoming sequel, Chicken Police: Into the Hive also sports the same art style, right?
Well… it does, but it has a very nifty trick up its sleeve: head into the settings and you can toggle “noir” mode on and off. Turn it off and you’ll be presented with glorious full colour visuals. Yes, the world of Chicken Police and its protagonists Sonny and Marty might have looked great in black and white. But in colour, they look stunning.
The visual style has a lot to answer for here: it’s beautiful and almost photorealistic – well, as photorealistic as chickens with human bodies can look. Developers The Wild Gentlemen have done a fantastic job of bringing something unique to life in such a striking way.
In terms of gameplay, Chicken Police: Into the Hive plays out almost exactly the same as its predecessor. In fact, we wouldn’t recommend jumping in unless you’ve played the first and you’re already familiar with its characters and its bizarre, dark world. There’s also Zipp’s Café to contend with too: a spin-off café simulator that introduces you to some of Into The Hive’s characters. That one is optional, of course, but if you want to get the most out of this universe, it’s well worth a go.
Fanatical’s “Build Your Own Relentless Bundle” allows you to own Chicken Police on PC – and two other games – for just £4.99/$4.99. Or you can pick eight games for $10/£10. Along with Chicken Police, we recommend Graveyard Keeper, Neighbours from Hell and Human Fall Flat.
Get into the nitty-gritty of Into the Hive, and you’ll be in the midst of a complex conspiracy, which the free Steam Next Fest demo only scratched the surface of. You’ll spend your time talking to characters, trying to extract information out of them, and scouring locations for clues, evidence and other useful items.
It plays out like a classic point and click game, and we love that there’s a few useful tools on hand: the touch of a button will reveal all interactive points, for example. And heading into your journal will let you know what you should be doing at any time.
Into the Hive has no release date yet, but it’s expected some time this year. That gives you enough to time to jump into the first Chicken Police, at which point you’ll undoubtedly fall in love with its spunky feathered protagonists. Whether you opt to play this new sequel in colour or monochrome, we’re pretty sure you’ll have a great time.