Canadian developer Ravenous Games’ Tiny Rogue is an entertaining but flawed time-killing title that features randomly generated stages and clever turn-based gameplay.
The player advances through increasingly difficult levels, moving, attacking, and using various power-ups. Enemies shadow the player’s movement and success comes down to carefully positioning your armour clad knight in areas that make sense in the context of your foes’ location
Power-ups range from teleporting to the end of a stage, to throwing knives and fireballs that freeze all foes at once (this ability is particularity useful). Similar to how important knight placement is in Tiny Rogue, taking advantage of power-ups at the right moment is key to success in Ravenous Games’ title. Sometimes it makes more sense to hang onto abilities until you really need them rather than use them as soon as you pick them up.
In fact, if you find there are too many enemies on the screen in one of Tiny Rogue randomly generated stages, it’s probably a good idea to use that teleport spell you’ve been hanging onto and skip the level entirely. Likewise, if you’re standing directly across from a foe, a wall sifting ghost for example, using your throwing knives to take the creature down before it gets within striking distance of you, is almost always the best course of action. The more you play the game the clearer its various intricacies become.
But what’s holding the game back right now is its difficulty level. At times it’s impossible to finish levels because of how Tiny Rogue’s randomly generated stages are structured. Unless you have banked a number of extra abilities, pushing through more than one or two foes in a level is often impossible.
While I understand Ravenous likely developed Tiny Rogue with the goal of creating a challenging experience, when it’s actually impossible to complete a stage, players are going to feel cheated.
Even though Tiny Rogue doesn’t break new ground when it comes to the turn based genre and suffers from difficulty related issues, it’s worth checking out. The unbeatable stage issue only pops up occasionally and the level of strategy required to be successful in the game is refreshing.
Tiny Rogue is priced at $3.49 on the iOS App Store. Unfortunately an Android version of the game isn’t available.