Lil Tanks – Review
Follow Genre: Side-scrolling shooter, Action, Indie
Developer: Lead Money Games
Publisher: Lead Money Games
Platform: PC
Tested on: PC

Lil Tanks – Review

Site Score
Good: practically endless fun
Bad: might get monotonous
User Score
(3 votes)
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VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 8.0/10 (3 votes cast)

Lil Tanks is an action-packed indie side-scrolling shooter, developed and published by Lead Money Games, that is sure to captivate you with its organized chaos while you try to dodge and shoot your way through difficult levels and defend the world against the cuur. Hell yeah, eat my lasers, aliens.

Lil Tanks logo frost


In Lil Tanks, you play as a duo of prototype AI tanks, a military project dubbed ‘Lil Tanks’, that is mankind’s weapon against the global alien invasion by the Cuur, an extraterrestrial race looking for a new world to inhabit because theirs is dying. When they got to earth, the Cuur changed the atmosphere so that it became unbreathable by human lungs and thus whipping out most of earth’s military forces, except for Lil Tanks, you are earth’s last hope.

While this is not much of an original or elaborate story, it gets the job done and gives you a reason for shooting through hordes of alien machinery and warding off the invasion. Lil Tanks is primarily focused on gameplay so a short story is enough, in comparison to other side-scrolling shooters though, this game’s story gets told pretty neatly and almost makes you feel sorry for the aliens, but not enough to not shoot them with your awesome laser gun.

Lil Tanks normal


The game possesses 16-bit graphics, is 2D and has an old-school, arcade look. Even though it feels old-school, Lil Tanks also feels fresh with nice particle effects, smooth animations and great atmosphere. Reminiscent of many other side-scrolling shooters, Lil Tanks gives you that nostalgic feeling of stepping into the arcade for the first time in so many years and it is absolutely thrilling. Color schemes vary depending on which stage you find yourself in, darker colors for a volcanic region than for the amazon forest, pretty reasonable, right?

Sometimes, Lil Tanks behaves a bit odd; for instance, you have the option to make the game go full screen. Every time the game starts up though, it starts windowed, which is not that much of a problem because it is easily fixed by going to the options screen but it is a minor glitch that can get rather annoying on a long term. The game also contains some uglier graphics, but these are very uncommon, a dropping lava blob for example: it feels weird and the color of the blob does not match the rest of the lava, so it feels unfinished.


Lil Tanks’ soundtrack is composed by Kelly Warner and boy, and feels like an alien-killing rave, it consists of 20 tracks and is available for purchase on steam. When faced with an alien invasion, you are presented with 2 choices of musical genre: are you going with apocalyptic metal, or are you going with balls-to-the-wall techno? In this case, Lead Money Games and Kelly Warner decided that techno would be the better option. With a new track being played at every stage, you are sure to enjoy yourself while you’re murdering alien machines.

Lil Tanks kaput

Moving on to the sound effects, Lil Tanks has everything you would expect from it, explosion sounds, laser sounds, lava blob falling sounds, the list goes on. Overall good sound effects and nothing to complain about.

Something you can complain about is that when you die (which happens quite often), you can retry the stage you died in and the same music keeps playing over and over again, but this is the case with many games that work with levels or stages. It is not an uncommon problem, but a very common and recurring one in a lot of games, to which there was never a solution found. Nevertheless, it can get irritating from time to time to hear the same track being repeated into infinity.


As an action, indie side-scrolling shooter, Lil tanks does a tremendous job in representing the genre of the game, it is all you would expect from a side-scrolling shooter. Of course, this genre has been around for many years and this gives Lil Tanks that nostalgic, old-school feeling and reminds veteran gamers of classics such as Sega’s Bomber.

Lil Tanks lightning

The game works through your screen that constantly moves forward and so does your tank, while your screen is ‘scrolling’ forward you must shoot and kill incoming enemies and dodge hostile lasers and object looking to bring about your demise. To be able to make things more hectic at the end of a stage while still being able to survive, power-ups are dropped from a certain enemy that give you lasers an upgrades for the remainder of the level such as turning it into a flamethrower. When you kill the enemy Cuur, you get experience points proportionate to the difficulty of the enemy, when you level up, you get certain upgrades like a speed boost or ‘double shot’ which doubles the lasers your tank outputs.

Furthermore, advancing in the stages of the games, you unlock other tanks with different special abilities, your starting tank for example: your first tank has the special ability to summon a device in front of it that shoots missiles, lightning or throws flames. The second tank you can unlock has the ability to repair itself, useful in long boss fights. Each stage also possesses their unique boss that uses its own mechanics to try and defeat you, but you can’t let that happen! You are mankind’s last hope! An example of one such mechanic is one that buries itself underground, thus making it harder to hit while it lays lava in your path, having to dodge those lava rips.

Lil Tanks Bossfight

Even though you can choose to play with your keyboard, it is recommended to play with a controller because this makes things a lot easier, a joystick is more helpful than WASD when trying to dodge a ton of things.


Lil tanks is a highly addictive and enjoyable side-scrolling shooter that will make you play for hours trying to unlock everything and putting an end to those damned aliens while raving to the awesome techno music in the background, but beware! You will get killed, those bosses aren’t easy. With some minor glitches that are easily forgotten and a ton of fun, Lil Tanks is one of the best at what it does.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 8.0/10 (3 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
Lil Tanks - Review, 8.0 out of 10 based on 3 ratings

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