Snipperclips analysis. Independent cutting puzzles

Written by Kamran Haider

Since we tested it in January, we were convinced that Snipperclips was going to be one of the most interesting games at the launch of Nintendo Switch … and it’s important news. As you will read in the analysis, it’s indie spirit is charming, its ingenious puzzles and enjoyment in company one of its great virtues.

The story behind Snipperclips, two brothers who one day participated in a collective session of video game creation (“game jam”), and which ended up the concept of a couple of characters cutting each other out for Generate all kinds of shapes. In fact, it is not necessary to look further, since the playable mechanics is based precisely on the design of those red and yellow creatures that we control cooperatively.

When Adam and Tom Vian presented it at a GDC’15 conference, they came to say that this prototype (then known as Friendshapes) had been designed in just eight days. Then they already anticipated that this Flash project was intended to be passed to Unity and that by their focus they were valuing the domestic consoles market.

We do not know what happened thereafter, except that it has become one of the great releases of Nintendo Switch. And it is good news. Not only because it is a quality puzzle game, but because it means a great starting point for the “indies” on this platform. If the Great N does well, the personality will not only come from games designed from the Kyoto factory but also supporting these young promises, collecting interesting projects that can give the brand a unique personality.

Promising “indie” premiere

Snipperclips is a game that fits perfectly within the philosophy of Nintendo Switch, and more particularly its Joy-Con. It is a calm game, which requires some skill, but which is mostly reflective. Complex controls are not required, just ingenuity to get ahead in a series of tests in which the dynamics, in addition, is very easy to understand: cut your partner.

The title gives the option of playing alone, alternating the handling of the two protagonists, but the magic begins when two players hold the Joy-Con in the cooperative . It is then that you will begin to communicate, to agree, to laugh, to let out exclamations because something does not go as it should, etc. It is a work designed to enjoy with a friend, with your father, with your brother, as a couple … With anyone. It adapts to any profile and circumstance.

Surely you will have seen it already, but given the nature of this console, we can play both in desktop mode and in TV mode. This makes possible the slogan “when you want, where you want and how you want” by Nintendo, becoming a game that demonstrates the possibilities of the machine in this regard. Each level is designed to have a rather short duration, ideal for alternating with Zelda or simply as relaxation before bedtime.

Of course, it has its difficulty, and it is easy to find moments when you do not know very well how to get out of a certain problem. But there is also the magic of Snipperclips. You will run into some less inspired level, but the overall balance is positive, with ingenuity, good ideas and moments of “eureka”.


It is a calm game that requires some skill, but it’s mostly reflective

The level design is superb. The controls are simple. However, not enough attention is paid to how funny the title is. The animations of the faces when cutting one character to another, when bowing, when jumping … Each level has its particularity, the result of one of the workers (Adam Vian) has been dedicated to making comics. Noticeable. There is much enthusiasm in the artistic facet and it is one of the attributes that make the launch strong.

The game lacks a more logical progression in difficulty since it has ups and downs and a better sense of progress is missing. There are situations that stand out and others involve a mere process. But otherwise, it is a fairly round launch, because apart from the three worlds included (with many levels), we propose two additional modalities for up to 4 players.

One of them is about continuing to solve puzzles, while the other invites us to duels to do some kind of basketball, hockey or death fight (by cutting). Quite complete for the approach you have, that of an exclusively downloadable release that becomes one of those video games that can coexist with a triple A like Zelda since the birth of Nintendo Switch. And that is the magic, that such a project has managed to find its place. Hopefully, many “Snipperclips” come behind this …

Recommended: Analysis of Phoenix Point, a deeper but less polished XCOM


After seeing and checking the quality of Snipperclips, we just want more. More “indies” projects able to surprise us and take advantage of the possibilities of Nintendo Switch, as in this independent court title. Although not all puzzles share the same genius and have improvable aspects, it is a brilliant and very nice way to release the machine, especially if you want something to play in a company.

  • Brilliant playable concept, with great ingenuity in the approach
  • Designed to play in the company, from two to four people
  • The artistic and sound friendly section that perfectly accompanies the style of the game
  • It is a positive commitment to independent software on Nintendo Switch
  • You miss a greater sense of progression, especially in difficulty
  • Some puzzles have more ingenuity than others

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Kamran Haider

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