Genre: Co-op Metroidvania adventure
Developer: Kenny Sun
Publisher: Raw Gury
Release Date: April 20th, 2023
Edited by AlexKnight2005
Poor Mr. Sun. His last delivery was stolen from him. Luckily, the delivery company is ready to start an operation to retrieve the package. And once they get it, they can safely get it back to where it belongs. Mr. Sun’s Hatbox.
The game is entirely made in a pixel art style. Minimalistic, no large areas, so you get very simple but nicely done mission environments. All the missions are filled with many helpful accessories that will allow you to achieve your small victories. Now, these accessories are small, but in most cases, you can immediately recognize what they do and how they help solve any obstacles in your way.
While Mr. Sun’s Hatbox is a rogue-lite platformer, you’ll have a range of options to enjoy. The missions are usually built for a stealth approach, where you quietly enter the location, find your target, and either take him out or kidnap him. You can also decide to complete a mission in loud and violent ways, should you want to. The only ‘punishment’ for doing that is that if you do make too much noise or get detected, you will not like how everyone just comes after you the moment the alarm gets turned on.
To deal with your enemies, there are two main types of equipment – Weapons and Hats. Weapons range from swords to ballistic shields, pistols, or bows and can give you an advantage over your enemies.
A Hard hat can protect you from enemies, a propeller hat can give you the ability to fly for a little bit, and a turret hat will shoot whenever something bumps into it, while a spiked hat will hurt your enemies when they try to jump on your head. And jumping on your enemies’ heads is something you will probably be using a lot. By doing this, you will knock your target unconscious, and you will be given a choice. Either you can just snap his neck, or you can use a balloon to kidnap him. There are a limited amount of balloons in every mission, but they allow you to bring home equipment or even enemies.
And that leads us to the space between the missions. This is a moment where the game turns into a resource-managing base-building strategy game. You have to set up a base under the ground from where you will be launching all your operations. Storage room to keep your possessions, med bay to heal your soldier, research lab so that you can get upgrades for the missions, or even a brig, where you get to brainwash all your kidnapped enemies and turn them to your side. Soldier management is a huge part of this expanded gameplay. You only get to choose one soldier for each mission, and if they get killed in the process, you lose them forever. That is why you have to carefully choose who to pick. Every recruit has a set of random advantages, such as med-kits healing them twice as much in missions, but to make the game more challenging, they also possess a set of disadvantages. They can be kleptomaniacs, which means you don’t get any loot gold; they can be clumsy, which makes them take twice as long when using balloons, or even weak-minded, and that will make them faint every time they kill someone. This would all be perfectly fine with me, but sometimes you get a little bit of bad luck, and the game becomes a grind. Researching is a good example of this, as you will not only need money but also specific hats or weapons. This means you need to start amassing large quantities of some of them, which can discourage you from researching anything at all. However, that is something that could be overcome via cooperative multiplayer. Of course, the multiplayer settings involve the possibility of friendly fire. This means you can decide whether you will be able to stun a friend, kidnap a friend, or necksnap them. This adds not only a challenge but also a lot of fun and many more resources possible to collect.
Audio-wise, the sound effects and music have been created in a chiptune style, which meshes perfectly with the game’s art style. It will still make you feel like you’re in some kind of spy movie.
Another thing that this game is doing just right is the controls. They are very easy to learn, and you also have the controls right in front of your eyes as they are a part of the game’s UI. Move, jump, fire, and grab. All you will need to make your way through the missions. Of course, it can take a little bit to get used to it. Sometimes, you need to drop your weapon to snap the neck of your enemy. But it is very intuitive.
All things considered, Mr. Sun’s Hatbox is a rogue-lite platformer combined with a base building. It’s a very complex and interesting approach, worth giving it a try.
- Art style
- Interesting gameplay
- Easy to handle
- Can get repetitive
- Overcomplicated research
Coipher gives Mr. Sun’s Hatbox a Drastik Measure of 6.8 out of 10.0 (68)