In a time dominated by an ever-growing number of expansive open world games, it’s occasionally nice to sit back with something simple. There are a lot of small games for the Switch, a good amount of which can, unfortunately, be written off as cash grabs. Simplicity, however, doesn’t always have to mean bad.
Pong is simple, and yet one of the most iconic games ever created. Henry the Hamster Handler by Pocket Money Games is not going to reach the icon stratosphere like Pong, but it is a simple game that packs in a lot of complex fun.
Henry The Hamster Handler Review
The game’s premise is basic; make sure the furry little nuggets of joy reach their destination without getting eviscerated. The Hamsters walk at an even pace across the stage with various obstacles in their way.
You the player must press the correct Joy-Con button when prompted in order to allow the little ones to proceed without impediment. Fail to do so, and you’ll immediately see your new friends burned, gassed, crushed, vaporized, or fall to their deaths. If a majority don’t make it across the danger zone intact, the stage will automatically be lost.
There are three hundred levels, each one with increasing difficulty and speed. Like most classic rhythm games, you have to get into the groove or you’ll get overwhelmed pretty quickly.
The first couple of levels ease you into the play mechanics, but I found myself scrambling to hit the correct buttons pretty soon out of the gate. As you can guess, the hamsters keep coming, forcing you to act fast or face the consequences. Things got so intense, I definitely became anxiety-ridden on more than a few occasions.
There’s really not much else to the game. Hamsters drop down, and the human must ensure they make it safely to the goal. Fail to do so, and you have to restart the stage. There are no frills, no bonus menus, and no options to speak of. This is as simple as it gets, but don’t let that fool you into thinking it’s not worth your time.
It’s good to step away once in a while and slide down into a subtler yet more challenging affair. These Hamsters definitely deserve a chance to live, just don’t yell at me if you end up throwing your controller across the room.