Cleaning Cars And Packing Boxes: The Fiddly Bits Of Hac

Drive on.

Your car’s dirty in a driving game? Press the wipers button. Pssh. Hac makes it charmingly more complicated. You’ll also want to press the button to spray water or you might just smear dirt across your windows. And it’ll let you get out your car and clean mud off the body with a bucket and sponge. And you might need to top up the wiper water with a bottle which you yourself filled from a tap then packed into your car. It’s a fascinating road trip game and I’m delighted by its steady stream of dev blog posts revealing more tiny new interactions. I think you might be too.

(Warning: this post is heaving with animated gifs, so not one for slow computers or connections.)

To briefly explain, Hac will give seven days and seven nights to drive their poorly uncle to the holy land on a pilgrimage. You’ll need to pack before setting out, figuring out what you need, what might be useful or fun, and what you have room for. Then you set out on a journey through procedurally generated routes. You could motor on through, but the journey will offer opportunities to stop off and poke around, if you want to. Creator Greg Pryjmachuk explained in a forum post:

The conflict in the game comes in the form of the stop-off points within each route. There should usually be 1-2 stop off points generated in each route. These stop off points, whilst consuming time as a resource, offer unique character interactions, supply collections, car upgrades, collectables and easter-egg opportunities.

I’m trying to catch that “far-out” sense of being on the road. Sort of like when some of the random encounters happened during Fallout 2.

Sounds amazing, doesn’t it? With all the tiny interactive bits, gosh, it might be the upcoming game I’m most excited by. Pryjmachuk regularly posts new little animated scenes on his development Tumblr, so let’s see what’s new since Graham played a prototype in November.

Packing supplies into boxes is pretty fancy:

You fill that water bottle yourself, of course:

And you can pack that box into another box with more stuff:

And then pack that into your car, as space allows:

Do put the toilet seat down before you leave (I’m so happy to see a video game toilet interaction beyond ‘flush’):

Pryjmachuk is currently working on the procedural world beyond your apartment block:

Time rolls on as you travel, of course:

Into moody nights:

Down dirty roads:

Wait, now you’re just pushing mud around:

That’s better:

And this Viscera Cleanup Detail-y washing for the rest of the car:

Is:

Just:

Lovely:

Do follow Hac’s Tumblr for regular wonderful updates like all this, and its TIGSource Forums thread often contains more explanation of what you’re seeing. Pryjmachuk has released public development builds, but the most recent is from December and is missing lots of these bits. We don’t know when it’ll be finished and launch, but I am so stoked to get in and start poking at stuff.

I’m still hoping that Magenta Sunset‘s developer will return to its drive-o-fiddling one day too.

17 Comments

  1. Ducce says:

    What, no rim cleaner or insect remover? Outrage!

    • GameCat says:

      Where’s the funny plushy toy on spring that you can mount on window?
      0/10

      • karnak says:

        Probably it’s one of the things that you can acquire in the stop places.

        Like the rosary beads to hang in the rear-view mirror.

      • Neutrino says:

        That will be the DLC.

  2. Premium User Badge

    Henke says:

    Honestly? There is such a thing as too much complexity. At least for me, my fave sims are the ones that strike a balance between realism and accessibility, like ETS2, Spin Tires, and Lunar Flight. If a game requires more buttons than fit on a gamepad it has too many!

    • tanith says:

      Which is not the case for Euro Truck Simulator 2. At least I cannot play it just with a gampead, need that keyboard.

      Hmm.

      There are a few games I couldn’t play with (just) a gamepad. Elite: Dangerous, Planetside 2, Freespace 2, X-Plane, the X games… (a lot of space sims here)
      Why are you so afraid of many buttons? Complexity ftw!

      • Premium User Badge

        Henke says:

        Well ok, I did have to leave a few things, like attach trailer and start engine, on the keyboard. But I did manage to cram in all the stuff used while driving on the gamepad, including wipers, indicators, highbeam/lowbeam, and toggle gps. I drive in automatic and only use the cab-view, so that saves me a few buttons too.

    • Alice O'Connor says:

      It’s basically just standard movement controls, mouse, and then a use key. You look at things and use ’em. There are lots of things to use.

      • Premium User Badge

        Henke says:

        Ah. Hmm. Seems like it’d be tricky to drive while fiddling with the instruments. Then again Lunar Flight’s VR mode worked pretty much that way. Just look at a button and hit the interact button to use it. I hope this thing gets a VR mode.

  3. karnak says:

    I still remember fondly the fake freedom of Test Drive 3. It was the only game that really made me imagine I was riding through a real countryside, without the constraints of a closed circuit.

    I know that Test Drive Unlimited is supposed to be all about “road freedom”. But, somehow, it doesn’t feel the same thing. It makes me think of a mix between GTA and Need for Speed Underground 2.

    Anyone still remember Test Drive 3?

    • Monggerel says:

      Test Drive Unlimited had no weather and no nighttime.
      A racing game about driving free and young and probably drunk round a big-ass island has no weather and no nighttime.

      LET THAT SIMMER A WHILE YEAH

      Also the cops were monolithic mastodons of monomaniac metajustice and neither sleet nor hail nor… oh wait.

      STILL SIMMERING

      • Honigsenf says:

        for test drive 3, i had to modify autoexec.bat and config.sys to run this…and quitting the norton commander.
        the intro and the menu with the real sportcars in shiny 256 color got me :)

    • karnak says:

      OK.

      You guys got me.

      I really want this game to be the next Test Drive 3. Sort of.
      You get the point.

      I wonder if we can hit chickens and cows too. TD3 did that.

    • KenTWOu says:

      Test Drive Unlimited 2 and The Crew are all about “road freedom”.

  4. Honigsenf says:

    for test drive 3, i had to modify autoexec.bat and config.sys to run this…and quitting the norton commander.
    the intro and the menu with the real sportcars in shiny 256 color got me :)

  5. Chuckleluck says:

    A complex game like this is all well and good, but if I’m driving my uncle to the holy land in a videogame, it better be more like the Top Gear Middle East Special. Needs more treacherous drives through Iraq.

  6. Somerled says:

    I’m outraged–OUTRAGED!–that that car wasn’t parked in the lot of an abandoned grocery store adjacent to a gas station or fast food joint with public restrooms before cleaning. Fix please.