Hamster Bob is an educational game for the Nintendo Switch. It’s essentially a virtual coloring book, with thirty pages of activities. Will this be enough to entertain the kids during a long drive? Thankfully, the answer is yes.
There are five sketchbooks to choose from, each with six sheets. Each sheet is locked, apart from the first one in each sketchbook. This gives players an obvious place to start and helps to provide an incentive to keep playing by unlocking something new when one sheet is finished. And progressing is easy; this is meant to be a fun game for young children.
Each sheet consists of a series of objects to color in. Objects are broken down into several sections that you color one at a time. This sectioning stops you from coloring outside the lines, making it perfect for youngsters still gaining dexterity. There’s a handy color chart to the right, with palette switches made via a simple tap of the screen. Under your picture is a progress bar for each section, indicating how much of the required space you’ve colored in. You’ll earn yourself three stars if it’s colored in fully.
Hamster Bob is designed to be a relaxing game. There’s no time limit to nag you; no rules as to which color your object should be (my purple duck looked pretty cool). And if you want time out from coloring, you can also dress Hamster Bob. There are hundreds of outfits to choose from, some available from the beginning, and others unlocked as you progress.
There are various themes along the way, from farmyard animals to outer space. This variation also keeps the game feeling fun and fresh. There’s more to Hamster Bob than just coloring in too, which also helps to make it more engaging.
For example, you start by coloring in a house. Next, you color in a duck. Then you help the duck walk and swim by tapping the screen until you find an apple tree. After coloring that in, you collect the apples and answer a very simple number question. It’s this kind of variation that will keep kids stimulated while playing.
I also like the sticker collection area. This is where all your colored objects are stored for revisiting or recoloring. It’s a nice way to introduce children to the world of collectibles and adds some longevity to the game. Even I want to collect them all!
Hamster Bob is aimed at a younger audience and would most likely suit children from three to five years old. The voice acting means kids who aren’t at a reading age can still enjoy the game by listening to Bob’s instructions. I appreciate this attention to detail.
Overall, Hamster Bob is an entertaining little game for youngsters. It’s easy to use, and the touchscreen controls are perfect for kids. The interface is well designed, and the game provides plenty to do, keeping players busy for several hours. If you have a pre-school age child at home, this is a game worth considering.