Krinkle Krusher made me rage quit, I’m not afraid to admit that. This cute looking title had me shouting expletives in frustration, much more so than some games that proudly state their difficulty as a selling point. Maybe it was because Krinkle Krusher isn’t advertised as such and the first couple of stages seem easy enough, but by the eighth level I was ready to give up. The game has sixty levels in total.
Krinkle Krusher is a tower defence title where you must stop the Krinkles from getting to and destroying your wall, using elemental attacks to stop the advance. When you first begin, you have a lightning attack at your disposal, but these are soon joined by fire, ice, wind and mud. Each attack is based around a ring, with each ring having a limited mana pool. If you keep spamming a particular attack then the ring breaks and you have to wait a while for it to repair before using the associated power again.
This system is why I almost quit at level 8. The wave of enemies felt overwhelming with my power depleting quickly due to trying to spam attacks. Eventually the solution I found was to go back and try and get three stars on earlier levels. Yes, Krinkle Krusher has a three star scoring system like so many other titles, but should you get earn the triple stars on a stage you unlock a diamond, which can be used to upgrade your rings. However, before you can upgrade the rings you need to unlock the Mage’s Room, which requires 10 diamonds.
So this really didn’t help with stage eight, which I passed through sheer luck more than anything, but after finally unlocking the upgrade room things started to click. You’ll find that you’ll need to go back to earlier levels and get those diamonds to have a real chance of proceeding, this being down to the fact that at certain points your attacks will need to be stronger to progress past the waves of Krinkles.
Each power can go up to level five, and as the powers get stronger the game actually becomes a lot easier. However you’ll have to prioritise which powers to use on different stages, as some Krinkles gain more power from complimenting elements. Among the first you’ll encounter is the fire Krinkle, which increases in size if you set it alight. This can work to your advantage though as the blast area also increases and once you do destroy a large Krinkle, in this case hitting fire with lightning, you can take out a small group surrounding it too.
Krinkle Krushers is full of vibrant colours and looks quite pleasing to the eye. You can see the difference in your powers as they improve with lightning bolts looking bigger, and the fire appearing to burn with more intensity. The music was a bit same-y but can get stuck in your head, though the voice acting and the rhyming, on the other hand, were quite annoying.
The mage tells most of the story through rhyme but there are a lot of times where you can tell the writers were stretching, with some sentences barely rhyming at all. Sometimes a bit of word switching was required to make rhymes work, giving the mage a Yoda-like sentence structure. Worse is that in the game itself, you actually control the magic glove whose voice is particularly grating as phrases like “Krinkletastic” are shouted out as you destroy creatures. Maybe the voice was picked for a comedic angle but it didn’t really work.
Krinkle Krusher is a game best played in short bursts, otherwise it feels repetitive very quickly. Despite the distracting voice acting and the early difficulty spikes, if you stick with it you can find that there is a solid game underneath, and plenty of fun to be had if you like the tower defence genre.
Version tested: PS4