In light of the current global situation, running a virtual hospital might not seem like the best form of escapism, but Two Point Hospital is no ordinary institution. This is healthcare if practiced by Patch Adams, mixing comic hijinks with surprisingly addictive hospital administration. If you’re of the age to remember Bullfrog’s classic Theme Hospital – this is its spiritual successor, indeed some of the same developers are involved.
The basic premise is simple – you build and operate your own hospital in a variety of scenarios, curing patients of their very peculiar and often amusing ailments along the way. As you build up your hospital with special treatment rooms to handle the various illnesses – such as a shock clinic to cure patients with shock horror or a room to remove pans from their heads – it’s up to you to hire the correct staff for each room. Each staff member has a particular set of skills that apply better to certain rooms, and some are students still learning. Training rooms can be used to train staff and unlock more traits, and you’ll need to juggle staff training with work duties to ensure everything runs smoothly.
Each room can be kitted out with decorations or more equipment to make the procedure more successful. You buy these items with the game’s special currency rather than regular money, Kudosh, earned by completing various tasks and career challenges. It can be a bit of a pain to earn when you’re starting off your first few hospitals. You’ll also need to build a research room to unlock new rooms for your hospital and upgrade other rooms, but this takes time – a lot of time.
One of the main frustrations you’ll encounter with Two Point Hospital, kind of appropriately for a healthcare game, is waiting. Kudosh takes a good while to earn, whilst unlocking new things for your hospital costs a fair amount.
Patients will die. There is no avoiding it. A loud dull bell rings when a patient is about to die and you can watch them flop onto the ground and float away into the abyss… or they might turn into a ghost and haunt the hospital. They leave little puddles behind too. You’ll need a janitor skilled in the art of sucking up ghosts to deal with them. Amazing I know.
Staff morale and patient comfort are important, so you’ll need to decorate the place appropriately, with plants, posters and vending machines. There’s a good variety of rooms and most are quite fun to watch. The chomatherapy room sprays paint on to grey patients, the head office sucks the small heads out of patients’ bodies and in cardiology you watch patients running on a treadmill wishing you were that active.
If juggling business management with healthcare sounds like fun to you, or you just have OCD and an unstoppable urge to place furniture and items all over the place, there’s a lot to love about Two Point Hospital. Creating a fun work environment turns out to be really fun.