When we were approached by Area 35, the publisher and developer, for Tiny Metal I wasn’t sure what kind of game it would be off of the title. Could it be an action RPG? A fighting game? There was no way of knowing for sure until I- oh! This reminds me of Advanced Wars.
So as you might have guessed from my intro, this is a top down strategy game with strong similarities to Advanced Wars. As the player you take control of several units and attempt to eliminate the enemy in the field. The map is covered in a constant fog of war, requiring you to send scouts forward in order to find and eliminate your foes. While following an interesting story of a world recovering from the brink of ruin and a country in danger of collapse with the lose of their leader.
The game boasts a 20 hour single player campaign, definitely delivering on a strong promise that I could see in the first handful of missions that I played. With my experience from Advanced Wars, I was able to easily jump into the game and win sweeping victories. That doesn’t mean it is only a carbon copy. Tiny Metal adds in unit facing to determine a chance at performing a critical attack, I didn’t have this occur so I don’t know what it does, as well as dealing more damage against a unit. in addition, a new mechanic, lock on allows you to set up deadly unit combined fire attacks against a single unit. Needlessly to say, when I discovered this little trick I abused it to great effect as the unit being attacked will only attack the unit that commands the attack. Which can’t occur if the unit dies before the counter attack phase.
The one surprise was hearing Japanese audio, don’t worry there are english subtitles, for the story but english unit taunts and commands. It was a bit unnerving going into a game expecting to hear english dialogue for the main characters, but by no means does it take away from the game. If the game has a single flaw so far as I can see, the attack dialogue for units can get irritating quickly. That said, I’m certain that there is an option to turn that off somewhere I just didn’t look.
If you were a fan of Advanced Wars, this game is similar but with a great number of new tricks up its sleeve. If you’re looking into getting into these kinds of game, I couldn’t think of a softer intro into the genre. The missions explain in great detail how to perform actions, giving the player the tools to win while not removing the skill needed to obtain victory. I can’t wait to get back to playing more of this game, so with that said, this game is released 12/21 on Steam, Switch and PS4 so be sure to secure a copy and give this game a try of your own.