Tiny Troopers Joint Ops XL – Review
Follow Genre: Arcade, Action, Strategy
Developer: Epiphany Games
Publisher: Wired Productions
Platform: Switch
Tested on: Switch

Tiny Troopers Joint Ops XL – Review

Site Score
7.3
Good: Cool art style in story fragments, zombie chickens.
Bad: Missions can get repetitive.
User Score
0
(0 votes)
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Rating: 0.0/10 (0 votes cast)

Tiny Troopers Ops XL is a combination of games that has been out for a long time but has now been bundled for Nintendo’s Switch. The game tries to bring players a cuter version of the warfare genre, by adding a lot of cute characters to the mix. The game was developed by Epiphany Games and published by Wired Productions and we were lucky enough to give this game a go. Grab your trusty Joy-Con controllers and prepare yourself for the heat of battle in this pocket-sized war game.

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Story

An in-depth story isn’t present in Tiny Troopers Joint Ops XL You get short fragments that tell you what’s going on, in-between campaigns. Most of these are the commander speaking to the troops or some new intel that gets delivered. Basically, things that happen in most army games and movies. The characters that appear in the short fragments don’t really appear in the game itself, which is kind of sad because you don’t get any character development or empathy with the soldiers. Although there is one character that appears in the fragments that you can “rent” each mission.

Graphics  

The story fragments in between campaigns are in a comic style but are drawn with some animation and a bit of 3D effects. This is actually a pretty cool way to tell a story. The game itself is mostly seen in bird-view so unless characters look up, you mostly see helmets and no faces. This means that most of the characters aren’t overly detailed. The only time that you can see a character fully from the front is on the upgrade screen. There you can see that the characters look okay but are still pretty rugged.

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The textures used in the background look pretty basic and although every mission is different the textures are often the same. Only the zombie campaign is really different and gloomier. Everything there has a greenish glow to it. That together with the destroyed buildings give it that special “apocalyptic” feel.

Enemies are differentiated in difficulty through textures but still look basically the same. When you fire in exactly the same spot as an enemy, it’s really difficult to tell the difference between each person’s bullets and bullet lines. This makes it hard to tell if an enemy is shooting at you because there is absolutely no difference between textures or colors from bullets from enemies or friendly fire.

Sound

There is some nice voice acting in the animated comic part but this makes the voice acting in the play part of the game feel extremely meager. There is only any voice acting present when some enemies die, when comrades die or when you duck for cover and that’s about it.

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The music in the game is pretty good and has a stimulating effect on the game. It can sometimes sound a bit like marching music while other times it has that typical background music that plays during tense moments. It fits right in with the military theme of the game.

Sound effects in Tiny Troopers aren’t extraordinary but still satisfying. You can make the bullets fly all around and hear the logical gunshot sounds. The explosions that you hear when you blow up a building are very satisfying as well, as is the sound of using a rocket launcher.

Gameplay

Tiny Troopers Joint Ops XL is an arcade, action and strategy game where you complete missions given by the commander. When you start the game you get the option to play the tutorial which helps to learn the controls. Shooting in this game is done with the right joystick and is a bit tricky. Aiming with this mechanism is pretty difficult especially when you’re trying to shoot diagonally. When you get to control multiple soldiers at once, they seem to aim pretty bad. Sometimes the gunshots even form an x even though they should all do exactly the same as you control them all.

You have different campaigns to choose from, namely the soldier campaign, the spec ops campaign and the zombie campaign. Both the soldier and spec ops campaigns are pretty much the same, only the missions are a tad different. The missions in those two campaigns are mostly to rescue hostages, destroy buildings or objects, kill all enemies or kill higher officers. These two campaigns are the ones that have the story fragments. The zombie campaign is also very similar except it has zombies and the world is way gloomier. Only in the zombie campaign can you kill chickens, as they are now zombie chickens, you get points deducted if you do it any of the other campaigns’ missions.

When you start a mission you are provided with the objective which you can always find again on the map screen. Outside of the map screen, you also have a screen for extra supplies, these do cost in-game money though. Which often sucks if you just spend all your money on an upgrade but can’t pass a tank because you don’t have a rocket launcher. Vehicles and buildings are often extremely overpowered and can kill you almost instantly or at least pretty quickly if you’re not paying attention. They also have an enormous amount of health that takes a long time to lower, with just shooting at it. Most of the time there some rocket launchers in the area but these are rare and grenades don’t even cut it with most buildings and vehicles. Grenades are less rare than rocket launchers but are really hard to aim as they bounce away from where you aim it at.

The soldiers you control can level up with each mission but when they die, you lose all that progress. There is an option to revive them tough, but it uses medals. Medals are collectibles that are hidden around the missions but there are mostly only 1 or 2 medals per mission. It takes 3 medals to revive a soldier so it is really difficult to collect enough medals for every time they die.

You can also use medals to unlock characters on the upgrade screen. This would be an okay system if you actually got the characters after unlocking them but you don’t. If you want to use the specialist you just unlocked with a medal, you have to pay (a pretty high) amount of in-game currency. This unlocks them for one mission. So if you want to afford any other upgrades you can almost never use the specialists.

Outside of the campaigns, there is also the “zombie horde” where you try to survive for as long as possible from hordes of zombies. You can even try to survive hordes of zombie chickens. Which isn’t as easy as it sounds since they’re pretty fast.

Conclusion

Tiny Troopers Joint Ops XL is a pretty fun game even if it has some flaws. Some missions can get repetitive as they use the same concept and the same textures, so you can get tired of the game after a while. Luckily the zombie campaign and horde can give a nice change of scenery. Even if the graphics aren’t that fantastic and up-to-date it does have that nice arcade feel to it. So if you enjoy military games and are looking for something to cure your boredom, maybe give this game a try. Even if military games aren’t your “thing” the cute aspect of the soldiers might also be a reason to give this game a try.

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Theotakutem


The one and only slowqueen! 😀 -student multimedia-

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