The Switch eShop is filling up with some noteworthy puzzlers recently so it's time to build a bunch of snowmen in a charming indie.
A Good Snowman is Hard to Build is a very simple game that's deceptively challenging. All you do is roll snowballs on the ground in order to assemble snowmen. Each one must be made with a large snowball then a medium one and finally, a small one on top for the head. Once you roll a snowball over snow, it becomes one size larger so you have to be careful not to accidentally create too many medium and large snowballs as you'll render the puzzle unsolvable. Thankfully, there are buttons to reset puzzles as well as undo and rewind time and I'm sure you'll be using those a lot. Once you assemble a snowman, it gets its own accessories which is cute and surprisingly rewarding.
As you progress through A Good Snowman is Hard to Build, puzzles will become much trickier. However, you can open multiple doors in a room by completing adjacent puzzles so you can run around and push snowballs from previously inaccessible positions to "cheat". Of course, the game doesn't tell you that this is a thing and I was initially quite perplexed when I came across the more elaborate puzzles that involved abstruse tasks. I'd consider myself fairly good at puzzlers yet I regularly got stuck so it's the sort of game that you'll pick up, try a few different approaches to snowmen that you haven't built yet, and then put it down only to try again another day.
Needless to say, A Good Snowman is Hard to Build is an adorable game. Each snowman has a name which makes you think that the monster who you play as is a lonely fellow who's trying to make friends in the most literal sense of the word. After you finish a snowman, you can hug it which is super-cute and you can sit on benches and use telescopes as well so it's quite a delightful game world. Plus, the soft colour palette and warm melodies really bring out all the gentle qualities of its game world to create a lovely atmosphere.
My main issue about A Good Snowman is Hard to Build is simply how short it is. I think there are about 30 snowmen to build before the campaign is over and there's a bonus mini-campaign afterwards. In this dream-like world, you can create snowmen with snowballs that actually become smaller as you roll them and it's pretty tough stuff, especially considering the snowballs are from the snowmen that you made in the campaign so you'll have to rebuild some in order to position them better in the dream world. Phew! 😅
If you manage to complete this post-game challenge then there isn't really any replay value at all. Because of that, it's quite a small-scale puzzle game. Obviously, it's very challenging so you could spend a long time doing absolutely everything but if you're super-clever or use a guide, the whole thing could be mastered in about an hour. You could try to get all the butterflies by completing the main campaign's levels without "cheating" (using multiple entrances) but considering the Switch lacks achievements, it's not all that satisfying to do.
I enjoyed my time with A Good Snowman is Hard to Build despite its brevity and the fact that I got stuck quite regularly. It's bursting with so much charm and lovely aesthetics that you'll roll snowballs with a smile on your face for as long as it lasts.
- + Tricky yet intuitive puzzle gameplay with some impressively challenging scenarios
- + Adorable visuals and music
- + Strong sense of reward throughout
- - Not many snowmen to build
- - Virtually no replay value
- - It's easy to get stuck