Handheld devices have quite a plethora of tower defense games and that’s exactly what Krinkle Krusher feels like: a game designed for handheld devices. As such, enjoyment for the game quickly dissipates when playing on the console version of the game as it’s clear that everything ranging from the core gameplay mechanics to the awkward camera angle proves this game is designed for handheld devices and Krinkle Krusher’s transition to the console suffers as a result of this innate handheld DNA of the game.
Krinkle Krusher’s gameplay is fairly simplistic whereby the Krinkles attack your base in waves and you and your magical glove (Yes, seriously) are tasked to defend said base. As many tower defense games, the Krinkles attack in multiple waves and become increasingly more durable and thus difficult to stop as waves go on and as you progress through the 60 levels the game offers across 3 different locations. As a Wizard you start the game with magic rings that at first begin with a simple attack of energy bolts that have to be timed well to compensate for the delay in casting the spells. You can spam the attack but due to the cooldown it limits any overuse as that will drain the power of the rings and require a short cool down period before you’re able to use the rings again. This adds a certain level of tactical thinking to the game but the game quickly proves repetitive and once you’ve got the timings figured out (which happens very quickly) the levels become a rinse and repeat style of gameplay, which makes it difficult for one to continue enjoying the game.
There are elements of progression in the game as the game features a 3-star ranking system whereby you earn a higher ranking for your effectiveness at defending your base but with no scoreboard or on-screen score this aspect of the game is quickly forgotten about as in practice it adds very little to the overall game. Also, since the different rings (fire, ice, mud, wind) are not all available to the player at the start, there is some progression prevalent in having to move forward through the levels in order to obtain these different rings but again, the lack of variety that many other games that belong to the tower defense genre offer, Krinkle Krusher just doesn’t stand out in any significant way to permit one to call it a good game.
As you can see in the screenshot above, you’d be very easily forgiven for believing this is just another game that you’d find on your mobile device as the UI and graphics of the game are very simplistic and seem to favour a handheld system. In all fairness, developers Ilusis Interactive Graphics did originally release this game on the PS Vita which quite clearly explains their decision to go with such simplistic features but at the cost of the console port which they may or may not have planned at release or in development.
One thing I will say for Krinkle Krusher is that the Krinkles themselves are fun and sometimes outrageous which is what I imagine the developers were attempting to portray with them as they are central to the game’s identity and are frankly what makes the game bearable as you might find yourself become genuinely engaged in pushing these cartoony, wacky enemies back.
However, apart from that it is hard to justify why developers Ilusis Interactive Graphics frankly even bothered to make a console version of the game. The controls are clunky and unlike some handheld games that have had success translating their controls to the console, Krinkle Krusher just doesn’t achieve this and as a result the game feels very tiresome to play on the console version. The problem that Krinkle Krusher has on consoles is that the controls makes it feel as if you’re flailing about and genuinely troubled to make precise actions.
Ultimately, Krinkle Krusher is a game I’d recommend at least trying if you like tower defense games and own a handheld device such as the PS Vita but on the Xbox One I’d be lying if I said anything less than the game just isn’t worth playing. One positive about the game is the Krinkles and I hope that the developers Ilusis Interactive Graphics find a way for these little guys to stick around in their future games but even the Krinkles aren’t enough to overcome the games flaws.
+ Krinkles are genuinely fun and wacky
– Awkward camera angles
– Handheld DNA doesn’t transition well to console
– Terrible voice acting/writing
Final Score: 3/10