Tinykin PS5 Review – It’s A Bugs Life

Landing on an alien planet known as Earth, you have to guide Milo with the help of the tinykin to get back home. 3D open world platformer Tinykin, out 30th August 2022.

Once in a while, a 3D platformer comes along and reminds me why it was a good genre to play back in the day. Then again, back in the day platformers could be ruthless. Not Tinykin. It’s arguably one of the easiest platformers, but in a positive way. It’s never a case of smashing through, getting the trophies, and then moving on to the next game. You savour it.

Things to consider if you haven’t the time to read this Tinykin review:

  • A 3D open world platformer that merges the aesthetics of Paper Mario and some of the mechanics of Pikmin and lots and lots of charm.
  • There are no deaths, continues or rages included in this game (well, depends on the person).
  • Plenty of collectables, not hard to miss, but locating all the pollen is a little arduous.
  • Super easy, relatively short, but definitely recommended to platform fans or those who like to finish their games within a reasonable time.

You play Milo, and despite their appearance, this isn’t a long overdue Honey, I Shrunk The Kids tie-in – they’re actually an alien who find themselves as a tiny little humanoid in a gigantic 1990s house on Earth. Lead by ill-informed insects that have misinterpreted our ways and worshipping the wrong stuff; he has to locate artefacts that will send him back home.

Tinykin Preview - Hawk eye
Hawk, eye. Source: Screen capture

Tinykin PS5 Review

Tinykin is a 3D open world using 2D characters like Paper Mario, or perhaps the more recent Demon Turf, and boy does it ooze charm. The most crucial comparison is how much like Pikmin it is in the sense of being a Pied Piper of sorts. Somehow, Milo is the catnip for these titular characters, and he commands a legion of them (once located) to do his bidding, such as retrieving objects or smashing through levers and the like.

The default tinykin (lowercase, apparently) are the worker bees who will carry items or push objects out of the way. The secondary ones are red, exploding when thrown to unlock paths or securing the collectable pollen used for upgrades. For a platform game, Milo isn’t the best at jumping, but aside from a non-spoiler set of tinykin who alleviate that, collecting pollen will unlock a bubble glider that allows him to hover great distances – as long as you continue to find the pollen and upgrade via an NPC. Locating the pollen for the upgrades is a doddle, but getting 100% for each level can be tricky.

There aren’t that many levels in the game, but they’re on a grand scale due to Milo’s size. Most times, you’ll begin by appearing through a ventilation shaft and then work your way up through the top via platforming sections, unlocking ropes as shortcuts should you fall, or silk zip wires that you can glide across the length of a room by using your soap board. Take that, Tony. Points of interest are typically outlined, so with L2 as your aim and R2 to fire, you’ll launch the tinykin to collect, destroy, or [insert non-spoiler verb] your way through. As mentioned, it’s pretty easy – the only challenge is finding your objectives (often indicated by a jumping NPC) and those elusive pollen collectables.

Easy Peasy

So what’s the point if it’s easy? Because it’s so much bloody fun. After getting up at 6 am to walk the dog on a Saturday, I made myself a coffee and thought I’d have a quick go. Four hours later, and that quick go has been a few stages, but I’ve paced myself, exploring almost every nook and cranny. Emphasis on almost as I’m still missing pollen. But that’s the only negative. Well, that and a few awkward camera angles provoking the odd cock-up in a platforming section. Those are very rare, however.

Falling from a great height will respawn at your last point, but other than that, there are no risks in the game. There isn’t a health bar, no lives or continues, no combat or particularly challenging gameplay. But – I must stress that this is such an entertaining experience well worth playing. Splashteam’s lack of danger is a welcome one. Sure, there are a few timed jumps here and there and a handful of problem-solving, but overall, the game’s flow is superb. Besides finding the pollen, there was never an idle moment not knowing what to do or where to go.

There’s not much else to say on Tinykin. I’ve enjoyed my time with it, and it’s a hit with my little one as she does her own thing and explores these little dioramas. Not one ounce of rage, irritation or a glum face, this game published by tinyBuild has been an absolute delight. Sure, it’s not going to blow you away, but I’d wager that it will put a massive smile on your face – especially those cutscenes – I want my own posse of tinykin!