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First Impressions: Is Bentley's Hackpack Worth Your Coins?

Posted by Sammy Barker

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Sony’s sneaky Sly Cooper series has always enjoyed a wide array of mini-games. The emphasis certainly became more pronounced in later entries, with Sly 3: Honor Among Thieves dividing fans due to its hearty helping of side content. Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time – the fourth entry in the series – follows in its predecessor’s footsteps, and in order to recognise that, new developer Sanzaru Games has siphoned off some of the title’s best activities for Bentley's Hackpack on PlayStation 3 and Vita. But is the cheap and cheerful cross-buy download a steal at £1.59/$2.99, or is it merely fool’s gold?

It’s a surprisingly well crafted package, that’s for sure. Boasting a brand new arcade environment – which you can rotate using the left analogue stick – and the same silly sense of humour as a mainline Sly Cooper game, you’ll almost certainly get a kick out of seeing your favourite characters in a new environment. Even former crook Dimitri Lousteau’s hanging out – and you know you’re in for a good time when the funky fish is in town.

The gameplay revolves around three of the main hacking mini-games from Thieves in Time, but, impressively, they have been completely overhauled for the downloadable application. In order to give the digital release more substance, Sanzaru Games has created all new levels, complete with multiple objectives and fresh visual tricks.

Playable activities include a side-scrolling twin-stick shooter, an isometric puzzle blaster, and a Marble Madness-esque ball rolling game. Aside from the latter’s forced motion controls, all three titles play well, and are surprisingly moreish at first. However, it’s the inclusion of the aforementioned sub-objectives that make these mini-games especially enjoyable to play, even if you’ve already powered your way through Thieves in Times’ main campaign.

All three titles are split up into a series of different stages, with each level including multiple objectives for you to beat. These range from high score targets, to collecting hidden items, and more. Completing any task rewards you with a token, which can then be spent in the gift shop to unlock treasures and bits and pieces of lore. It’s a compelling reward loop, that’s made all the more engaging by the addition of a unique set of Trophies. Sadly, despite the game supporting cross-buy, there’s no cloud save option, meaning that you have to start the campaign from scratch if you want to switch between platforms.

Still, it’s not enough to deter from the overall download’s appeal. The mini-games do lose their lustre after a while, but assuming that you play in short bursts, there’s a good chance that you’ll keep coming back for more. And considering that the package costs less than a McDonald's Happy Meal, there’s more than enough on offer here to raise a smile.

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User Comments (16)



rjejr said:

I only played the demo but the only thing I really didn't like - well besides the Monkey Ball levels - was the lack of instructions. Bently is helpful on the turtle levels, but I didn't know what was going on w/ those side scrolling ones. Treasure chests, grenades, different colored atoms. Just chaos.

The US PS+ folk will probably get this for free when the EU PS+ gets Assassins Creed 3.



Gamer83 said:

At its price it's worth it. I'll probably pick it up once I finish Thieves in Time.



hamispink said:

I've enjoyed it so far playing through Bentley's turtle shooter, though I tried the motion controlled ball levels and couldn't stand it. I'd like it if I could use the thumb stick because the motion controls are annoying and feel tacked on. The same type of levels in Mutant blobs attack were also a low point.



divinelite said:

Well not fan of mini games, so I play sly Cooper more into sneaking as sly in open world



RaymanFan2 said:

Yeah, it's worth it at the price just to support the devs, but it's not something I see myself repeatedly returning to.



odd69 said:

ill have a hard time trying to make myself spend money on this



Stuffgamer1 said:

I got it, enjoyed it, and earned all the Trophies. As far as tutorials go...those are in Sly 4 proper, it seems. Started that today and the first levels of the minigames are easier and more instructional in nature. So while you can (and I did) do the Hackpack first, you might want to save it for later.



NathanUC said:

I've not played it much since I got it, but I really enjoy the hacking mini games in Sly 4 so more are welcome



Squiggle55 said:

@hamispink I also didn't like the motion controlled ball levels in this demo, it didn't seem very accurate. On the other hand, I really liked the Mutant Blobs Attack levels like that - better design and sensitivity.



Gemuarto said:

I want normal side scrolling shooter where you can shoot by right analog stick. Bently's side scrooling is cool, but too chaotic.



JayArr said:

I don't mind DLC as long as its additional gameplay. Costume unlocks, booster packs, and cheat codes are all disgusting shameless money grabs though.



Stuffgamer1 said:

@Stargazer: Spoilers incoming (obviously)! The 4th machine is really just a front for a secret path to the basement, where the gang plays in a rock band, the credits roll, and you earn that nice, shiny Gold Trophy. You unlock it by getting the final Token prize, which requires 311 Tokens. Note: There are 22 extra Tokens in the game, so 100% perfection is not necessary.

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