Quick Look – Tiny Robots Recharged (#JustOnePercent 83/100)

Developer: Big Loop Studios
Release Date: September 9, 2021
MSRP: $3.99

I probably wouldn’t have bought Tiny Robots Recharged – after all, it’s free-to-play with ads on mobile, and in all honesty, it’s probably far better suited as a mobile game than a PC game. However, it was given away with Prime Gaming in October of 2021, less than a month after its release, and I admit that I don’t look too deeply into Amazon’s freebies past clicking “Claim Game”.

Tiny Robots Recharged is a diorama point & click puzzler. Although there’s no visual indicator for what can and cannot be interacted with, I never found it too difficult to figure out. Each level has three bright blue batteries to collect, as well as one more traditional style puzzle to complete. The levels are timed, and when you finish them, you’re awarded stars on the basis of how fast you completed them.

This isn’t really the kind of game you play for the story – although there is the barest whisper of a plot here. Your friends have been kidnapped, and you’re on a mission to save them. Every so often, a level is marked as a “boss” level, and although the puzzles are slightly more involved, and the visuals look more menacing, you never are in any real danger throughout.

The traditional puzzles are hit and miss. Each level has a screen which you interact with to activate the puzzle. Some are incredibly simple, like the Simon-style memory puzzle, or the one where you move a circle around a grid that only stops at walls. At least one puzzle type, I still have no idea what the game expected me to do – the two times I’ve encountered it, I’ve used the “skip puzzle” button since nothing I do seems to have any effect on the board state. A brief description of the puzzle type would have really come in handy here.

There are forty-nine levels in the story portion of the game, with seven of those being boss levels. Tiny Robots Recharged also has two other modes. The first is the puzzle room, where you can just solve a bunch of the traditional puzzles which increase in difficulty as you go. The other mode is called Outrun, which gamers of a certain age might recognize as a 3D Frogger game.

While I enjoyed the story mode, especially the cutesy 3D art style, I don’t feel pulled to continue playing, and unless you get really into the Outrun mode, I don’t anticipate it being particularly replayable. It’s fine for what it is, but there’s no denying the mobile game feel of it all.

SteamDB estimates that Tiny Robots Recharged has sold between 200 and 700 copies on Steam. The few reviews it has are positive, but it seems likely the the combination of being free-to-play on mobile devices and a large-scale giveaway less than a month after release didn’t do its sales figures any favors. It is ranked 2415 out of 10,967 games released in 2021.

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