I rarely get to play something that evokes the type of instant satisfaction that's similar to having taken a bite out of a deliciously roasted and salted drumstick. Sorry vegans, there's nothing like it, although you could get high and then munch some steamed broccoli, I guess. What I'm trying to convey here is that as soon as I launched Hoppenheim, everything seemed right with the world.
Hoppenheim is the perfect example of how a retro arcade game should look, sound and feel. The game is a jump and slash arcade where your character must move forwards while avoiding traps and dispatching monsters. If you spend too much time standing still, the lava lake bellow will rise and swallow you whole.
Although there's moving, attacking and blocking, the controls are designed in such a way so that you can comfortably play with one hand, either your left or your right. Tapping on the move button will make sir Hoppenheim jump to the next block. Sword swings are used to attack monsters, as well as to break open crates and doors. Finally blocking is used mainly to deflect fireballs and other contraptions. Three controls might sound like a lot for a single hand. However, you rarely feel overwhelmed, and you can usually wait a couple of seconds before proceeding.
Advancing through the dungeon will reveal tougher enemies and more treacherous terrain tiles. You only have three hitpoints; also insta-kill situations are never too far off, so time your moves carefully.
The course is littered with coins, which can be used to unlock weapons and characters with unique abilities. So, in a way, Hoppenheim is a lightweight rogue-like. Luckily, there are no purchasable boosts or coin-packs. You can disable the ads for a reasonable price though.
Hoppenheim manages to balance fun and difficulty with style. The 8bit derived sprites and animations are spot on, and the chiptune music is as quirky as it gets, which is just fine.