Tetrobot and Co. is a challenging puzzle game that often leaves you with that “aha!” moment when you figure out how to push forward. This indie title was developed by Swing Swing Submarine and features a cute mini-repair bot that is out to fix everyone’s broken robot troubles. While it’s a great workout for your brain, it becomes a victim of being repetitive. What Tetrobot does right is present a simple but challenging puzzler that is accessible for people of all ages.
If you’re expecting an engaging story to drive this game then expect some disappointment here. There is little to no narrative in Tetrobot and Co — the story revolves around a girl named Maya who created a mini robot, ironically named Psychobot, which is sent in to repair peoples Tetrobots. There’s not much else in the way of story, the game instead focuses on teaching you the fundamentals of how to play.
“The complexity of the puzzles will have you getting stuck frequently, but where Tetrobot shines is the undo button which can allow you to retrace your steps.”
Originally released on the PC back in 2013, Tetrobot and Co still utilizes the point-and-click mouse style which has been adapted to the Xbox One. Click anywhere on the screen and Psychobot will travel there, the point of the game is to collect different types of blocks similar to Minecraft and place them in the correct holders and navigate the course collecting golden blocks to continue. When you click a place for Psychobot to move he will complete the entire motion and you can’t correct it on the fly, this creates an annoying problem when you make a redundant move and have to wait for the bot to complete the course.
In order to progress you have to find golden blocks which after a certain amount will unlock the next set of levels. The complexity of the puzzles will have you getting stuck frequently, but where Tetrobot shines is the undo button which can allow you to retrace your steps. While the puzzles are difficult and there’s a sense of satisfaction when you finally figure out the solution, my problem is the type of puzzles you’re expected to complete don’t feel exciting enough. New mechanics are thrown in later levels but it feels gimmicky and often pointless.
The first thing that came to my mind when hearing the music was Donkey Kong Country, something about it felt familiar and I was loving every minute of it. There’s a jazzy melody that plays throughout, taking you to your happy place. Games like this demand a melodic tune because you might be stuck on a puzzle for a decent amount of time, the music needs to do a good job of keeping your mind relaxed and focused on tackling the objectives in front of you.
“Aside from the visual presentation, graphics run smooth and animations are quick — I can’t fault this game from a technical standpoint.”
There’s nothing special about the graphics, but for this type of game there doesn’t need to be, I just found the environments to be lacklustre and all too similar. Although, there are lots of colour in the levels and the world seems playful and simple. Aside from the visual presentation, graphics run smooth and animations are quick — I can’t fault this game from a technical standpoint.
Overall if you enjoy a challenging puzzle, Tetrobot will provide it — just don’t expect Tetrobot and Co to revolutionize the genre, expect it to eat away a few hours until you get bored. The lack of story, bland environments and uninspired mechanics are what ultimately bog down the fun factor. The saving grace is in the smooth game play and the difficulty of the levels which, if you are looking to put your brain to the test, make it worth picking up.
*** Xbox One copy provided by the publisher ***
- Smooth gameplay
- Brain workout
- Chilled out music
- Light on story
- Dull environments