I don’t play a lot of video games. I am usually happier watching while my (college) kids play them. You see, my direction sense is bad enough it affects my ability to navigate in most of them. I also seldom find controllers, on-screen shortcut bars, and keyboard controls intuitive, which makes me slow at combat. Especially controllers. (Yeah, I too wonder how I ever learned to play woodwind instruments.) Then my son became the proud owner of a Nintendo Switch, and two games for the system.
One, of course was Zelda: Breath of the Wild. The other was Snipperclips, a fun and charming little cooperative puzzle game for up to 4 players. Charming enough that I immediately agreed to play it with him, to try out the tiny Switch Joycons (controllers). The Joycon is easy to get the hang of, even if you haven’t used a Wii/Nintendo controller much. I had no trouble with it. Snipperclips has clear onscreen instructions for how to move, manipulate, and cut your cute U shaped avatar.
Yes, cut. As in snip or clip. Solving the puzzles require the players to cut away parts of each other’s avatars, done by overlapping your avatar with theirs and clicking the R directional button. Some of the puzzles are simply fitting the avatars into various shapes, including hearts and polygons. In others, the object may be to move items (some fragile!) on the screen or trap/herd something. Later puzzles get more complex. In one, for example, manipulating the avatars moves levers on the other side of the screen. You start out with a handful of quick puzzles that can be done in any order. After you have completed several, 1 or more new puzzles are unlocked. We have no idea at this point how many there are, as we have only done 10 or 12.
But we will find out! We are going to continue playing Snipperclips. The puzzles are entertaining enough, but that’s not the only fun. Those brightly colored avatars will make you smile. (See the image) Their cartoon faces and “body” language are so expressive! My son and I also had a great time discussing what to do to solve each puzzle, especially the more complex ones. Hint: Even if you are sure something won’t work or “Would be cheating,” just go for it! We found that thinking outside the box (or net or whatever) often got us through a puzzle we’d “failed” several times.
This would also be a good game for young kids of at least early elementary age. Manual dexterity and hand-eye coordination are more necessary than reading ability. Particularly for the shape-fitting games, avatars must be moved into the outlines and cut very precisely, for instance and some kids will need help with this. And obviously adults love it too, so very good all-around family game.
As far as I can tell, Snipperclips‘ biggest shortcoming is that it is only available for the Switch platform. So, Switch owners, grab this one ASAP.