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Hamsterdam review for Nintendo Switch


Platform: Nintendo Switch
Also on: PC
Publisher: Muse Games
Developer: Muse Games
Medium: Digital
Players: 1
Online: No
ESRB: E10+

For the first couple of levels, I was kind of into Hamsterdam. I mean, it’s a fast-paced, easy-to-pick up beat-’em-up featuring a kung-fu hamster. What’s not to like?

Then, somewhere around the middle of the game, it slowly dawned on me that the first couple of levels are pretty much all this game has to offer. Not literally, of course — it continues on for many levels after that — but, more or less, what you see in those first few levels is what you get for the rest of the game. You mash the Y button, occasionally flick a thumbstick, and do that about a hundred times every level. There’s a little variation here and there, but for the most part, you’re doing the same thing on repeat here.

I feel like that sort of thing works better on mobile, which is where Hamsterdam got its start. If you were just tapping the screen a bunch of times as you kill time on a bus or between meetings/classes, it would be fun. You wouldn’t have to worry about memorizing complex controls, and you wouldn’t have to worry about keeping up with a story. You’d just go in, beat up the rats and other vermin, and move on with the rest of your day.

As a console game, however, Hamsterdam loses a lot of its charm. Notwithstanding the fact you can take it on the go, obviously, it’s one of the rare games that loses something when you add in buttons. Don’t get me wrong, it looks wonderful, and all those bright, flashing colours definitely pop off the screen.

It’s just that Hamsterdam feels like a bunch of empty calories. There’s nothing in the way of depth, and you notice that a lot more when you’re paying $10 than you do when you’re only paying a buck or two. I could see this game being worth it on mobile, but on the Switch, you’re probably better off looking elsewhere.

Muse Games provided us with a Hamsterdam Switch code for review purposes.

Grade: C