A Hat in Time Review

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Posted: 2 weeks ago, last updated 11 days ago.

Author: Andy Robertson.

OverviewOverview

A Hat in Time is a running, jumping and exploring game inspired by retro platform games like Super Mario 64, Banjo-Kazooie, Spyro the Dragon and Psychonauts. As you explore each of the worlds, you discover characters to talk to, enemies to battle and an unfolding story about Hour Glasses falling from the Sky.

You play in an open world and travel between six levels (including the 2 extra via downloadable content). As you do there are items to collect, puzzles to solve and enemies to fight. The main game is about collecting the 40 "Time Pieces" to save the planet. To help, you can collect Yarn Balls in each level, which are used to create special hats that grant different abilities: faster sprint, explosive potions and the like.

It's a game that is magical because of the rich worlds to explore, detailed interactions and items to find and decipher. At any time another player can join you to help but it's just as much run to take turns to play and explore each of the wonderful levels.

DetailsDetails

Rating: PEGI 7+, ESRB TEEN

Release Date: 05/10/2017, updated in 2019

Platforms: Mac, Nintendo Switch, PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

Genres: Action, Adventure, Open World, Platform and Puzzle.

Developer: @HatInTime

 

CommitmentCommitment

Duration: This game will take between 9 hours and 14 hours to complete. After completing the main quests there is still plenty to do that will occupy players wanting to see everything for up to 30 hours.
 
Players: You can play with 2 players in the same room and up to 50 players online. You can play online with the Online Party update on PC. You can't play online on Switch, Xbox or PlayStation.

CostsCosts

Additional in-game purchases are offered for items that enhance the experience.

Includes pack of new content:
  • Seal the Deal - New chapter: The Arctic Cruise and Death Wish difficulty. This six Time Rifts and new outfits.
  • Nyakuza Metro - New time pieces, sticker upgrades, weapons. A new factory to explore.
  • Online Party - Online mode for 50 players in 4 person battles.
  • Co-Op - Free content that adds co-operative play.
You don’t need a paid subscription to play this game online.

Age RatingsAge Ratings

Rated PEGI 7 for non-realistic violence in a child-friendly setting or context, for violence that lacks any apparent harm or injury to fantasy or mythical beings and creatures and for pictures or sounds likely to be scary to young children.

The game features non-realistic violence in a childlike setting, when enemies are attacked with the player’s umbrella, they vanish in a puff. Also it contains pictures and sounds likely to be scary, for example ghosts and a stealth level in which the player must remain unseen by a scary black creature.

ESRB TEEN with Blood, Fantasy Violence. Players can defeat enemies by using punches/melee attacks and bashing them with whimsical weapons (e.g., umbrellas). A brief cutscene depicts a red chalk drawing of blood streaks and a jar filled with "cartoony" eyeballs. One prolonged sequence depicts an impaled murder victim (an owl character) lying in a large pool of blood; it is later revealed that the blood and murder are fake.

In addition to the official ratings, it’s worth noting that in one mission your soul is stollen and you have to help three foxes commit suicide in a fire to get it back. You are then praised for murdering and strangling them by a demonic spirit.

User-Generated Content: This game includes content created by other players, such as maps, outfits and items, that are not reflected in the game rating.

Users Interact: The game enables players to interact and communicate with each other, so may expose players to language usually associated with older rated games.

AccessibilityAccessibility

You can auto-skip cutscenes with a setting. There's an assist mode for Accessibility that makes some elements "more accessible" and you recover health after a while which makes it less likely you will die and have to start again.

In the game you are given directions to items required to unlock chests. Also, one of your hats has the ability to direct you to the next important item.

Difficulty

How you can adjust the challenge of play, and assistance the game offers when you fail or get stuck.

Low Pressure: Game tasks aren’t time-limited or with a high emphasis on performance. Or there is a low pressure play-mode available.

Assistance

Assistance With Controls: You can get the game to assist aiming, steering, reloading, jumping, running etc.

Assistance With Direction: Indication of where to go next with arrows, cookie trail and the like.

Tutorials: There are helpful tutorials, instructions and tips.

Reading

How much reading or listening comprehension is required, and how accessible this is.

Simple Minimal Reading: Minimal reading is required.

Any spoken content has subtitles: All spoken content has subtitles, or there is no speech in the game.

Speaker Indicator: Captions or icons and speech bubbles indicate who is speaking.

Some Dialogue is Voiced: Some of the game dialogue and narrative is voice acted.

Controls

How you control the game, different options for alternative inputs and whether you can remap these settings to suit your needs.

Multiple Buttons & Two Sticks: Can play with multiple buttons and two sticks.

Invert X/Y Axis: You can invert the direction required to control looking and aiming.

Rapid Pressing Optional: Quick, repeated button pressing not required or can be skipped or disabled.

Vibration Optional: Controller vibration not used in the game or you can disable it.

Image

How you can adjust the visuals to suit your needs, and offer additional information if you can't hear the game.

Visibility

Bright Colourful Palette: Game uses bright colours and is generally high contrast.

Large Game Elements: Game characters and other elements are large and distinguishable.

High Contrast Mode: You can adjust the contrast of the game to be high-contrast.

Outline Interactive Elements: Characters, platforms and enemies can be outlined for visibility.

No Screen Shake: No screen shake effect or this can be disabled.

Audio Cues for Visual Events: Audio is provided to indicate visual events.

Motion sickness friendly: Option to reduce motion sickness (motion blur, depth of field, field of vision).

Colour Options

Colourblind friendly: Game doesn’t rely on colour or can switch to colourblind friendly mode.

Colour adjustments: Adjust colours of characters or game elements for greater visibility

Clear Interface: The game navigation, maps and information are clear to read, large or adjustable.

Audio

How you can adjust the audio of the game and whether audio cues compensate for aspects of the game that are hard to see.

Adjustable Audio

Balance Audio Levels: Set music and game sound effects separately.

Customise Audio Levels: Control volume levels of specific events and elements in the game.

Play Without Hearing: No audio cues are necessary to play the game well

System Settings

Nintendo Switch has some built-in features, including a lockable zoom, that can be used on all games. Windows has extensive accessibility features. Some, like colour correction, work with games. Lots of accessibility software can be used with PC games, from voice recognition to input device emulators. PlayStation 4 has a range of accessibility settings. Some are system only, some work in games (invert colours and button mapping). Xbox One has a system features, the excellent co-pilot share controls mode and adaptive controller support for all games... read more about system accessibility settings.

Supported by PlayabilityInitiative and accessibility contributors: Andy Robertson


 




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