Tiny Troopers: Joint Ops XL (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Drew Hurley 14.07.2018

Review for Tiny Troopers: Joint Ops XL on Nintendo Switch

Tiny Troopers: Joint Ops has already had releases on numerous consoles, arriving on the previous generation and the most recent, on PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and even on handheld via PS Vita. This version of the twin-stick shooter was originally released in 2014 but is actually a collection of Tiny Trooper titles from 2012, including the very first game from mobile, bundling together both of the original titles, along with the Zombie Campaigns and a brand new extreme difficulty setting. It's rather dated now, though, but can this new instalment, Tiny Troopers: Joint Ops XL, breathe fresh life into the old-school series?

From the main menu, there are a host of modes available to jump straight into after completing a brief tutorial mode. The main story campaigns of the first two games are available under "Soldier Campaign" and "Spec Ops Campaign," then there's also a "Zombie Campaign" and a "Zombie Horde" mode. Regardless of what mode is chosen, when first beginning, it seems very promising. Classic arcade action that hints at plenty of replayability thanks to the system of collecting extra mission objectives. These objectives reward two types of currency that can be used before a mission to purchase permanent stat upgrades for the troopers, along with cosmetic uniforms and even unlocking troopers equipped with special weapons.

There's a ton of stuff to purchase and it seems strange as to why there would be quite so many items in the store… until you realise this was a freemium phone game; the type of title that relied on microtransactions. They are no longer part of the experience, yet the core gameplay hasn't been balanced to make up for their removal, meaning this feels horrifically grindy.

Screenshot for Tiny Troopers: Joint Ops XL on Nintendo Switch

The problem with Tiny Troopers: Joint Ops XL is that after playing for even the shortest period of time, that promise is shown to be absolutely empty and the flaws really begin to become quite evident. The missions get very repetitive, very, very quickly. It would seem that perhaps jumping from the original Tiny Troopers missions to the Tiny Troopers 2 missions might give some fresh new gameplay, but that sadly isn't the case. It's the same old simple objectives. Kill something, escort something, and destroy something - with no real variation or innovation as things progress. All the while, some of the worst AI in recent memory is showcased.

Ironically, the extra modes based around zombies actually improves the AI considerably, as does it improve the general quality of the game. The Zombie Horde mode is actually fun and, despite the repetitive nature, it has the same sort of fun arcade gameplay that grants it some value and a reason to keep playing.

Screenshot for Tiny Troopers: Joint Ops XL on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

4/10
Rated 4 out of 10

Subpar

Nintendo Switch is becoming the go-to home for indie titles, and that's become something of a double-edged sword. It has meant that Switch is becoming the new Vita, stuffed to bursting with indie darling ports from PC, giving a whole new audience the chance to experience them. However, it's also meant an influx of mobile ports that are not quite as memorable. Tiny Troopers: Joint Ops XL falls somewhere in the middle. There's a ton of content here for the low price of £9.99, but these games are sadly artificially inflated with repetitive, boring gameplay that really shows its age.

Developer

Epiphany Games

Publisher

Wired Productions

Genre

Action

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  4/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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