LadiesGamers Mr Sun’s Hatbox

Mr Sun’s Hatbox Review

Game: Mr Sun’s Hatbox
Genre: Platformer, Strategy, Arcade, Simulation
System: Nintendo Switch (also on Steam (Windows & Linux))
Developer|Publisher: Rogue Sun | Raw Fury
Age Rating: EU 12+ | US Teen
Price: US $14.99 | UK £13.49 | EU € 14,99
Release Date: April 20th, 2023

Review code provided with many thanks to Johnny Atom.

Hello Sunshine

Mr Sun’s Hatbox is a rogue-lite which mixes 2D action platformer with a management sim. On its surface, Mr Sun doesn’t appear like much with its simple pixel art style. But after just a few runs, I found myself hooked. Offering an experience that’s refreshing and very different compared to other rogue-lite in the genre. This is an especially appealing pick for those who can only spare a few minutes for gaming here and there. 

The premise is utterly silly but it got a good laugh out of me. Mr Sun, just like any normal person in today’s world, has ordered a package online from the company ‘Amazin.’ Things go a little awry on delivery when a thief decides to make off with the package. Mr Sun, being chilled as he is brushes it off as no big deal and is happy to reorder his package.

However, since he has super special insurance from the company, the delivery driver goes one step beyond his usual duties and sets out to retrieve the package. Steps that include setting up an army-style base of operations below Mr Sun’s place of business. Never have you seen such extreme steps to retrieve a simple package. The game clearly knows this too. As the plot progresses, Mr Sun points out the silliness of the whole situation, it’s light-hearted fun that got plenty of chuckles out of me.

LadiesGamers Mr Sun’s Hatbox
Mr Sun just wanted his package

Delivery Espionage

The action sections of the game are a mixture of platforming and, would you believe, stealth. Controls are pretty easy to pick up with the game providing little reminders at the bottom of the screen. You’re able to take on the game alone or have a friend jump in local co-op. The closest comparison I can think of for this is Metal Gear Solid Peace Walker. A title released all the way back on the underrated original PSP.

Levels are littered with enemies who become alerted to you through their line of sight or sound. Levels may also feature security cameras, microphones, and even deadly traps, so keep your eyes peeled for the level layout. Getting caught is not the end of the world, but it does make things feel pretty stressful and chaotic as all other enemies will be alerted to your location.

You can either run and hide till the enemy loses interest or choose to engage in combat with some encounters solved simply by jumping on an enemy’s head to stun them. If you prefer, you can snap their neck to neutralize them. An action which comes with a cringing breaking noise. Before the parents get a little concerned, I’ll point out that this game doesn’t really feature any gore. Yes, you are able to wield weapons like guns and axes, but the worst you’ll see is enemies breaking into pixelated chunks, with no semblance of blood. After all, this is a game where you play as what I would best describe as a face with legs. 

LadiesGamers Mr Sun’s Hatbox
You can’t see me behind this wall

Tools for the Job

You are able to wear hats found hidden in boxes, or you can steal them from enemies. These grant special perks like shooting a bullet when hitting the ceiling or even double jumping. There are several of these to find, and it was satisfying to discover their purpose. You can also wield a weapon though it comes with limited use. This could be a melee weapon or gun, and like the hats, there are many of these to encounter. Of course, you can only carry one of each at a time. But if you want to save an item, you can capture it with a balloon sending it back to the base for later use.

This feature can also be used on enemies who, too, can be captured and then brainwashed back at base to become part of your growing army. Each new recruit comes with their own individual perks; most are negative, to begin with. This could include having reduced vision making the level darker, being afraid to use certain weapons or having a bad back reducing mobility.

It’s a charming feature, in a way. As you level up characters, you may be able to drop some of the negative perks for more positive ones instead. Should you struggle to find new recruits in the field, you can later just purchase recruits back at base, but more on this soon.

LadiesGamers Mr Sun’s Hatbox
Gameplay can get quite chaotic.

Retrieve the Missing Package

Though the goal is to retrieve the missing package, the game splits itself into several missions working towards this goal gradually over time. Before you head out, you have a choice of missions, each with a specific goal, such as neutralizing or capturing a target, collecting certain items or accumulating a target amount of gold. Levels are randomly generated every time, with enemies and item placements being different. This mixture makes the games flow very addictive, and with levels lasting around five minutes at most, this is a great way to fit in a quick gaming fix.

Levels can be tricky and unforgiving. If you die, you lose that recruit and the possible rewards. The only thing returning to the base is anything you sent back in balloons. If you fail on a key mission, you have to repeat another more standard mission again to unlock it, which often becomes frustrating after multiple mission failures. It was thanks to the random generation and not knowing what a new mission would bring that kept me hooked. As well as the single-player mode there is a multiplayer mode to enjoy with up to 4 players locally including deathmatch and last man standing. I wasn’t able to test this on review since I have no friends but seemed like a nice little addition on top of an already generous package. It just might take your friends a few moments to get used to the controls.

LadiesGamers Mr Sun’s Hatbox
Back to base, you go.

Base of Operations

When you’re not heading out on missions, you’re back at your base managing your operations. Here you build rooms under Mr Sun’s place of business, creating one hell of a facility for a delivery service, yet not actually deliver a package. Here you can recruit captured soldiers through brainwashing, heal injured staff, analyze your next mission, and choose the right recruit, hat, and weapon to take out.

Money is used to carry out most actions rewarded through mission success. Specific items must also be collected to purchase specific upgrades and grow your operation. It becomes quite the game itself, entering each room and tinkering with each feature. As you progress, you will unlock more rooms with the ability to buy and sell items increasing the variety of management further. Content is constantly being added to the game, enticing you to return often.

LadiesGamers Mr Sun’s Hatbox
Prepare for the next mission.


Graphics are where things take a more simple approach. The game is presented with a pretty basic pixel art style with fairly standard-level layouts for a platformer, accompanied by an acceptable soundtrack. It all works fine but doesn’t stand out prominently other than its quirky, light-hearted tone. I did like the various characters you could recruit, like skulls, bunnies and small folk. They are just variants of faces on legs, but it has a certain charm in their simple design. This is an example of a game where the gameplay more than makes up for its graphical limitations.

Performance on the Switch was good in handheld and TV modes. Unfortunately, I encountered a few moments where it just kinda froze. This was usually when I left the game in standby mode to return to it later. With missions so short, this didn’t hinder progress too much but was a bit irritating, especially when a mission was going well.

LadiesGamers Mr Sun’s Hatbox
Base of operations

Conclusion: Hat’s Off to You 

Mr Sun’s Hatbox is a highly addictive mix of action and management rolled into an amusing premise. It’s a game that keeps on giving the more you put into it. The difficulty is pretty high, especially with the negative perks you have to fight against. But with the regular trickling in of content, there was always an incentive to return for another run.

The biggest appeal by far was enjoying the game in short bursts, even though many sessions lasted longer if time allowed. Co-op is also a very welcome feature. I highly recommend this title, even if you’re tired of the rogue-lite formula. This one truly reworks the formula from the familiar action others tend to follow. The greatest lesson I learned from the game is the importance of taking out good insurance.

Final Verdict: Two Thumbs Up

Two thumbs up

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