If Hopiko was a noise, it would be the grinding of teeth. If it was a feeling it would be a mixture of crushing despair and cathartic, almost orgasmic joy.
It is a hateful thing, but hateful in all the right ways. Hateful in a way that makes you want to punch your iPad when you fail and hug a stranger when you succeed.
But through it all, it's fair. You never feel cheated by your defeats, and that means your victories are never cheapened.
The idea behind the game is a brilliant one. Essentially a virus has overtaken a games console, and you need to use the Hopiko to go in there and bash its face in.
You do this by pinging through teeny tiny platforming levels. Some challenges involve swiping to ping off in a specific direction, others involve tapping to shoot straight up. The hardest involve combinations of the two.
And when I say the hard levels are hard, I don't want you to think the other levels are easy. They're tough in ways that some people might find offensive. You need perfect timing, a sharp mind, and quite often a little bit of luck.
The way the game is sliced up, you're going to be replaying the same levels quite often. Die in one of the sections of five challenges and you'll head straight back to the first of them.
When it comes to the art style on show here, it's hard to find enough superlatives. It looks really, really good. And more importantly, it doesn't look like anything else on the App Store.
It's unique, it sounds amazing, and it walks the line between rage and triumph almost perfectly.
Don't smash it
Yes, there are times when you'll want to throw your iPad at the wall, then curl up in a ball and cry until your tears are blood, but then there are times when you'll high-five anyone you see and start painting joyous murals celebrating the life of the dev too.Hopiko is sharp in the best ways, and once you get the hang of its cruelty, you'll find a game that will consistently surprise, entertain, and hate you.