Tinykin - Switch Review
"They may be tiny but they have a big heart and they deserve a place in yours!"
Milodane is a well known archeologist researcher in a very prestigious university on the planet Aegis, working with a cute and loveable canine called Nevus. In his research, he concludes that humans do not originate from Aegis but from an entirely different planet (or even, a different universe). Countless hours pass by and eventually he and his assistant discover a strange signal emanating from a mysterious galaxy far far away. Milodane and Nevus begin their preparation to visit this strange planet in the hopes of finding signs of intelligent life. However, after arriving, Milo is awoken by a fuzzy little creature called Ridmi and standing in a huge hallway within a gigantic house. The inhabitants are all little creatures called tinykin; clearly something has gone terribly wrong!
To start, I was completely blown away with the cartoon-like introduction. The game’s 2D/3D graphics reminded me of something I'd normally watch on a saturday morning as a kid. The verticality in each stage makes for some very interesting platforming, truly as though you are a tiny creature in a massive environment. When you begin your adventure, you're standing in a massive hallway in what appears to be a gigantic house. You're definitely not your typical size either; you're as small as an insect.
Speaking of insects, a friendly creature helps you up and explains the situation. His name is Ridmi and he appears to be trying to collect different components for a strange machine. However, he is unable to collect them by himself and requires your assistance. But strangely enough, Milo, upon his arrival, has attracted strange colourful little creatures called tinykins, with each having unique abilities. These creatures are drawn to Milo, and Ridmi believes that Milo can use these little creatures to his benefit, collect the lost components and completing his mysterious machine.
While your walking around these massive environments, it’s instantly breathtaking as each stage has been painstakingly created to feel huge - almost unreachable, at first glance. Climbing up a massive plant pot to reach a table felt precarious at first before I found my bearings. As you progress, you’ll begin to use Ridmi’s beetle assistants as grind rails to travel to higher locations. In addition, you’re given a bar of soap from Ridmi to use like a skateboard to grind web rails and get around quickly.
The story is told through dialogue as you encounter many types of bugs and factions throughout your adventure. Completing main and side objectives reward you with key items or even artefacts that you can take back to your museum at your base. These side objectives can add a few hours to your play-time, but they’re not required.
Tinykin is all about collecting pollen; golden nuggets that are scattered all over the place, drawing in collectors to find every last one. You could be collecting anywhere between 400 to 900 per level, and doing so will unlock extra bubbles which allow you to glide over gaps for longer periods of time.
The tinykins themselves are the stars of the show. Each of five have their own unique colour and ability, such as conducting electricity, creating ladders, blowing up gems/doors, creating bridges and carrying large objects across environments. And while they are very similar to Pikmin (we were all thinking it), these little guys have only a single ability, though they can be thrown to grab pollon that may be just out of reach. However, giving them their dues, each has their own personality and as a collective, you can have hundreds around you at any given time.
- Lovely graphical direction
- Huge locations with great verticality
- Side objectives, rewards and achievements
- Adorable, useful tinykin
The only real complaint here is that Milo’s jumping ability, for such a small kid, feels really heavy, and landing far too quickly gives you very little time to react. It's a little disheartening when you reach a high ledge, only to miss a jump and not be given enough time to activate your bubble ability and have to watch him fall to his death. Thankfully, dying simply put you back to the last checkpoint before you fell, but if you managed to land safely, it's the trouble of having to climb back up to where you fell off that can become frustrating.
Finally, the game sometimes suffers from occasional frame rate issues in large open areas. While they’re not detrimental to the overall experience, especially as future patches will likely come about, at the time of writing, it’s just a little disappointing.
- Jumping weight
- Some frame rate issues
Final Score: 9/10
Tinykin is a wonderful little package that sends you on a great adventure in a miniature world. Talk to bugs, collect artefacts and search for all the pollen you can find. The game offers a world to get wrapped up in, filled with wonderfully large-scale environments. The Tinykins are also adorable and offer great gameplay variety; they may be tiny but they have a big heart and they deserve a place in yours!
Thank you for checking out our Tinykin Switch review, thank you to TinyBuild Games (via White Label PR) for providing the review code and thank you to our Patreon Backers for their ongoing support:
- Andrew Caluzzi (Inca Studios / Camped Out)
- Bel Cubitt
- NintenVania Podcast
- Rachelle Suri-Tucker
For more reading, check out our Digimon Survive review.