Most of the discussion I have seen on this game is how it compares to Advance Wars. I have never actually played Advance Wars, so I will be offering an unclouded perspective on the game. It is actually a decent game after all.
Unit diversity. There are several different units to take advantage of in TINY METAL. From simple infantry units to flying fortress units, the game has pretty much everything covered when it comes to unit diversity. There are even special hero units, which are upgraded versions of the basic units. The game does lack naval units, but there was never a whole lot of water on each map to begin with. Even when there was, the water was often far away from where the battles were actually taking place. Each unit has its strengths and weaknesses and the overall balancing is pretty good throughout. The only unit I felt was a little too powerful was the fortress air unit, but they are also quite expensive.
Amount of content. There is a massive amount of content to play through in TINY METAL. The campaign took me about seven hours to beat, but there is also a new game+ mode that is unlocked once cleared. On top of that, TINY METAL offers an immense amount of skirmishes to play, all of varying difficulties and sizes. I could easily have dumped another twenty or so hours just playing through all of the skirmishes, and even more if I went for gold medals on each mission (I usually ended up with silvers).
The art style. Despite being a game about war, TINY METAL makes use of a cartoony art style. It actually works quite well with this type of game. Because of this style, units can be easily seen against the map, only ever being hard to see when on certain buildings (like a factory). The art that shows up during the campaign’s dialogue sequences is equally well done. This art is a bit more stylistic compared to the rest of the game, but never felt off-putting.
Nicely polished. It is always nice to play through a game without worrying about potential bugs or such that may arise. I never ran into any bugs, frame drops, or any sort of technical issue with TINY METAL. It was a very fluid game in just about every area.
Predictable AI. TINY METAL’s one major fault is just how dumb the AI can be at times. The AI acts in a very predictable manner and never really posed a threat. I never failed a single mission and never really had any issues clearing the missions in the campaign. It felt like the AI focused way too much on units currently capturing buildings, attacking even when they were at a massive disadvantage. I did not attempt the new game+, so that may be another story entirely, but I at least expected some sort of challenge in the normal campaign. Difficulty options would have been a great addition.
Lack of multiplayer. There is a multiplayer button on the main menu, but the actual multiplayer mode has not been implemented yet. It simply shows a message saying that multiplayer will be coming eventually. If such a major component of the game is not finished upon launch, then it would make more sense to release the game as an Early Access title, but this is a game that is fully released on Steam. I found that to be a bit odd.
UI color choices. The percentage health amount of any unit on the map was incredibly difficult to see. The small HP percentage number blended in with the color of the HP bar itself and I found myself having to hover over each unit and checking its HP from the popup that appears. A minor issue, but a very annoying one, especially when more and more units appear on the map.
TINY METAL is a decent game overall. It is not a great game, but it is certainly not a bad game either. I would definitely recommend waiting until the multiplayer component of the game is released before buying, but the game still has a pretty nice amount of content to it as a singleplayer title.
You can buy TINY METAL on Steam here.
I was provided a free review copy of the game in order to write this review. Read more about how I do my game reviews here.