Posts Tagged ‘Two Point Studios’

Video: How does Two Point Hospital compare to Theme Hospital?

two point hospital

Do no harm, goes the Hippocratic Oath. So it’s with trepidation that I approach Two Point Hospital, a spiritual successor to Theme Hospital that could all too easily do harm to fond childhood memories of Bullfrog’s heal ‘em up. Thankfully, Alec’s recent visit to these shiny new wards have put my mind at rest – it sounds like the team has successfully transplanted the heart of that game, but grafted on smart quality of life improvements (to muddle my medical metaphors). And now you can see it all in action in one handy video.

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Theme Hospital successor Two Point Hospital is very much 1997 wearing 2018’s clothes

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The main thing I thought as I began to play Two Point Hospital, spiritual sequel to 90s medical management hit Theme Hospital, is that I barely had to think at all. Some alchemy of 90s sim game muscle memory and slick, thoroughly 21st century building assists meant I hit the ground running, immediately in my happy place of dragging out room sizes, rotating machinery and the time-honored architectural Tetris of making all this fit inside a finite space. It felt good – but how much of this was this the placebo effect of nostalgia?
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A longer peek behind the curtain at Two Point Hospital

Two Point Hospital

Let’s not beat around the bush here: Two Point Hospital is Theme Hospital 2 in all but name, and that’s okay, because I miss Theme Hospital and having a polished spiritual successor developed by a team of ex-Lionhead folk who understand exactly what made the original so consistently endearing is an incredibly enticing proposition.

It’s still relatively early days for Two Point Hospital, but here’s a full eight minutes of developer-narrated gameplay footage, showing the very start of the game, opening up a small-town clinic and treating what ails the locals. Premature mummification seems worryingly common in rural England as of late.

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A closer look at that spiritual Theme Hospital sequel

The news that Bullfrog & Lionhead veterans Gary Carr and Mark Webley were leading the development of a spiritual sequel to beloved 90s manage’em-up Theme Hospital seemed to go down rather well last week. So much of PC gaming’s past has been revisited in recent years, but the design’n’build’n’simulate’n’giggle formula used so successfully in Theme Park, Theme Hospital and Dungeon Keeper hasn’t enjoyed anything like the degree of 21st century resurrection that, say, pre-2000 RPGs have. Two Point Hospital is planned to rekindle that flame whilst doing a few things of its own, as well as being the first part of a wider universe of Two Point sims.

But while I coaxed plenty of detail about the whys and wherefores out of Carr and Webley, we didn’t get to see all that much of the game itself. This new video shows off a fair bit more, along with chatter from the devs about their plans for it.
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“We want to build out a world of sim games”
How Two Point Hospital is a step toward bringing Bullfrog-era sim games back from the dead

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As you may already have spotted, Theme Hospital joins the legions of 90s PC games being blessed with 21st century spiritual sequels. The Sega-published Two Point Hospital is the first game from Two Point Studios, the new endeavour from Bullfrog and Lionhead alumni Gary Carr and Mark Webley, Their plan, ultimately, is to follow-up Hospital with a clutch of other theme/sim/management games set in the same world – picking up, perhaps, where the Peter Molyneux-founded Bullfrog left off when EA closed them down.

I chatted to Carr, Webley and Two Point technical director Ben Hymers (himself an ex-Lionheader) about why they’re returning to Theme Hospital, why now, the importance of humour to it, what’s the same and what’s different, how the audience has changed since 1997, how they’ve been inspired by Prison Architect, Planet Coaster and Twin Peaks, and their plans for that world of sim games.
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Theme Hospital vets reveal spiritual sequel Two Point Hospital – & plans for a shared universe of sim games

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The Simpsons, Aardman Animations, Twin Peaks, Prison Architect and, quite naturally, Theme Hospital – these are the major inspirations behind Two Point Hospital, an upcoming sim/management game from some of the folk responsible for Bullfrog’s Theme glory years. Two Point Hospital, a combination of management and comedy in a fantasy healthcare centre, is due for release – via publishers Sega – later this year, and the first trailer is below. I also had a big chat with lead devs and Bullfrog/Lionhead veterans Gary Carr and Mark Webley about the game over here.
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