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Little Acorns Review

By , on February 17, 2012


Little Acorns
Download on the AppStore
4 out of 5

PROS

  • The swinging mechanic adds some fun to the levels.
  • The soundtrack is constantly punctuated by funky riffs.

CONS

  • The game takes too long to introduce its elements and get going.
  • Level design leads to a lot of pointless backtracking.

VERDICT

A platformer that one can play in short bursts that has some interesting ideas, but ultimately comes off as being a bit bland.


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Little Acorns has a simple premise. Your family of squirrels has returned from an outing to discover that your acorn stash has been pinched by thieving raccoons! Knowing that one should never let a raccoon get away with this sort of thing, and as the head of your squirrely household, you must traverse across the years and seasons to re-obtain what is rightfully yours.

This is what one might call a bite-sized platformer. Each level only takes a couple minutes to complete and is its own closed little vertical playground. Think Bubble Bobble or Rainbow Islands. You have a set time limit to collect all the acorns and get to the exit, and then if you're feeling adventurous, you can go back and collect the five pieces of fruit that have just appeared in the level. Collecting the fruit will unlock a piece of apparel that you can customize your squirrel with, and adds some extra visual flair to the already stylized graphics.

Mr. Nibbles is controlled by three buttons. Left, right, and jump. Once the rope is introduced, jumping within range of one of the designated swinging zones will allow to swing through the air, adding an extra fun mechanic to your acorn collecting (which is needed to reach certain platforms). As well as swinging, there are power-ups such as super jump, super speed, and a crash helmet that will destroy your enemies when you headbutt them with it. One other interesting addition is that getting hit by a spider or bee does not equal death. You turn green and slow down momentarily, treating the whole affair as a mild inconvenience as the clock ticks down. While this removes some frustration, it does make avoiding the enemies not as important as it probably should be.

And all in all, the game really is not as fun as it probably should be. Unless you're collecting fruit, the timer never seems to be a grave concern, and the levels more often than not feel uninspired. It's a shame cause the game controls well, has a great visual style and players should enjoy the funk overtones of the soundtrack. Little Acorns has done a lot right, so the flat feeling the game left us with makes one wonder just what could have been.

Screenshots

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