Dual Pesterquest x Hiveswap [Switch] Review – A Love Note To Homestuck!

My dual Pesterquest x Hiveswap review shows praise to the games that are love notes to the iconic Homestuck franchise I adored growing up.

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Alright, so let me preface by saying this is a Pesterquest and Hiveswap Review. Which, if you’re familiar with the titles you’ll know that they are love notes to Homestuck. As someone who binge-read all 8000+ pages back in high school, I jumped at the chance to play the follow-on series to review.

Both games have a similar feel, so what’s said about one can most likely be applied to the other. Both games are click-story progression, where you occasionally get the option to select a route which drives the story. With that explanation out of the way, let’s get into the Pesterquest x Hiveswap review!

Pesterquest Review – Hussie Is A Genius!

The image shows a very red-hued room littered with random oddities such as katanas on the wall and the occasional puppet. Dave is off to the right of the screen wearing his usual attire of black shades and the turntable shirt. The text on the front of the game explains how he throws an apple juice carton and entirely misses the shot

Jumping into Pesterquest first, this is the most nostalgic feeling of the two. Featuring the core cast from Homestuck, your only task is to befriend them, which seems easy enough. What you don’t expect is how irreverent and farfetched each route is. Just when you think you’re making solid friend-making decisions, you’re not, and you’ll have failed the route. Even failing the routes has its charm for hosting zany scenes and hilarious route-end art.

Again, it seems simple and a total “how bad can it be?”. But if I learnt anything from Pesterquest it’s that I’m a terrible friend who fluked my way into the hearts of those around me. That and Dave’s route was hilarious and by far my favourite.

Now, Pesterquest is a spin-off of Homestuck, but it is also newbie-friendly if you haven’t read the gigantic webcomic. So, someone unfamiliar with Homestuck could find themselves entwined in this outrageous tale of friends and making them. Naturally, with the game having diverting routes too, it has excellent replay value to check out alternative endings and uncover even more hilarious dialogue.

Whilst Pesterquest is iconic for Homestuck fans, it’s stunning in its own right. The style chosen for the game has an almost anime-esque approach, whilst still keeping the minimalist character choices that I adored from Homestuck. There was something so charming about seeing more humanoid art of the cast rather than those little pixel models from the comic.

I think it’s safe to say I thoroughly enjoyed Pesterquest and still continue to do so! I haven’t gotten through every route yet, but knowing I have more plus replay value ahead of me hasn’t left my mind, and I’m itching to have this review live to get back on it.

Hiveswap Review – Quirky and Strange

the image shows one of the trolls, Cirava from hiveswap who is in a very LED pink and green hued room. He looks distressed as he holds his face.

Many of my notes from Pesterquest remain true for Hiveswap – given they’re games possessing similar features. Another clicker-story style game where you can influence the route with choices at heightened scenes. The main difference is that Hiveswap features an all-troll cast who aren’t in the Homestuck canon.

Hiveswap boasts some brilliant character design that feels true to the Homestuck lore – on top of the fun interactions you’ll partake in. Similarly to Pesterquest you get to tell your own story through the friendships in the game. Though some of the friends you make are…questionable. Trolls are fascinating in that their ways of befriending are rather extreme. You’ll be put to some extreme lengths to accumulate new chums.

Leading on from that whole “Trolls are extreme” point, I do wish that Hiveswap had a little more life during heightened scenes. Each character had stunning PNG art, but a few scenes felt as though they could’ve done with a new cut instead of recycling one of the less fitting character arts.

the image shows the player who is basically a white stickman hunched over covered in green troll blood with the test "TERRIBLE AT MURDER!" written in red at the bottom.

Regardless, Hiveswap left as much of an impression on me as Pesterquest. Except this time I got to fall in love with new characters, as opposed to just falling in love with the same ones I did back in high school. Something about having a fleet of murderous and intense freaks who adore me was quite complimentary.

One thing I did enjoy a lot was that because of a Troll’s nature, I genuinely had no idea if I was on the right path to friendship until the final scene. With Pesterquest, my familiarity with the characters gave me a little bit of an edge in knowing which option is most likely the correct one. However, I was stranded entirely in Hiveswap with my broken bones and all, making scary friends and accidentally committing numerous crimes.

Pesterquest x Hiveswap Review Roundup
the image shows an up close of Dave in his red-hued room with a tv on in the background showing a man on a skateboard doing jump tricks. Dave is talking about Simba from the lion king and "who is going to teach him combat now"

Tying up this review, I hope my adoration for both these titles has shone through. Both Pesterquest and Hiveswap are so effortlessly simple and unique, and both rocking an elite soundtrack that helps guide the feel of the story despite being PNG-orientated. I didn’t expect myself to enjoy them as much as I did given I’m not typically a story-game enjoyer, and the art per scene and character was limited. The formula of the game was actually what made me love it so much. I could honestly go on and on about the background art and the fun character models, but I’m sure by now you get the point.

I highly recommend giving these titles a go, even if you’re not familiar with Homestuck. If you ever find yourself stuck at home (get it?), either of these titles could definitely be your new obsession. Each route is relatively quick and despite what ending you get will only take around 15-20 minutes per go – making the game quite lengthy, but ideal for bite-size play sessions.

You can check out more details on Hiveswap and Pesterquest on Steam(HS), Steam(PQ) and Switch(HS), Switch(PQ). And finally, the obligatory self-promo to another review, in case you’re browsing for new titles or enjoy opinion pieces. Pixel Cafe [Switch] Review – Take a Byte!

The good

  • Hilarious storytelling
  • Immersive plot
  • Great soundtrack
  • Nice visuals despite simplicity
  • Unique cast with dimensional personalities

The bad

  • Heightened scenes need more expressive PNG art
90 out of 100

It seems you've stumbled upon my bio! I'm Sho, your local weeb. Off the clock I am typically watching anime, reading manga, or doing art. I think it's safe to say that all my unpaid thoughts revolve around anime... That said, watch One Piece! (Or don't I'm just a biography.)