Hamsterdam: Paws of Justice Review

Today we are going to drill our way to the red light district in Hamsterdam: Paws of Justice. What started on Kickstarter can now finally be played and we were allowed to review the Nintendo Switch version!

The story of Hamsterdam is fairly simple, you play as Pimm, a pretty good kung-fu fighter who happens to be a hamster. The city in which you live is terrorized by a gang. This gang is led by the villain Marlo. Marlo is a chinchilla and also the leader of the Vermin Gang. They have destroyed your city and also kidnapped your grandfather. So it’s up to you to stop this gang. This story is of course not very deep, but that is not necessary for a simple indie title. The game does not want to be complex, but simply offers a good time. Eventually you will fight your way to the red light district where you will have to end the terror.

Hamsterdam lets you play through three cities with different internships and challenging boss fights. The game is fairly simple in terms of gameplay, but this does not mean that the game is easy. The game becomes gradually more difficult and each map has its own challenges. You have to fight against different enemies in every stage and use a combination of rhythm, precision and sometimes just randomly hit buttons.

The game comes across as a classic arcade brawler. You have to push buttons to attack and making combos and stronger attacks is done by swiping a specific rhythm on the screen. With your joy-con you can also perform combos by throwing your left joystick at the desired enemy and using the attack button. The combat is quite simple and you don’t have to learn much for it, timing is important and with precision you can be much faster when doing it right.

The game becomes gradually more difficult, so you will soon have to understand how some controls work. Here again it is a simple play style that is nice to have experienced once. That is to say, the ‘new’ factor is over fairly quickly and that does make a second playthrough less interesting.

Boss fights consist of various challenges such as running away of a large hamster ball and avoiding the big fist of the big boss. These fights were great fun to play and could sometimes be difficult. There was also, for example, a level where you had to collect seeds on a scooter or where you had to avoid bombs from a pipe that you climb up. The game is full of fun but challenging puzzles and has more depth than you might think!

Hamsterdam looks pretty nicely drawn. The art direction fits perfectly with the style of the game. It is also made child friendly despite some aspects. You will not expect that as there is a red light district in the game. All in all, the game is aesthetically good and I myself had little trouble with irritations at this point. Most indie games are good at acquiring a certain drawing style, but the cinematics in this game stand out quite well for me. The game keeps everything nice and simple and to the point.

Hamsterdam is a simple indie game that brings a fun experience to play through. The game is nicely drawn and has a few fun classic arcade mechanics. You can put nice glasses on your hamster and pave your way to the red-light district, how cool is that? The game is perfect for handheld and was amazingly nice to play on the Nintendo Switch. The game has nice challenges, boss fights and managed to offer me a nice experience. This is definitely recommended.

Hamsterdam is a great rhythm action game with a few fun mechanics and a great fit for the handheld play of the Nintendo Switch.


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