Have you ever heard of a Krinkle? Nah, we thought not. Well, let us introduce you to them: Krinkles are small creatures with sharp but pristine gnashers and their favourite food, of course, is cake. So, when they smell the sweetness in the air of the biggest cake in the kingdom – made to celebrate the fruition of a mighty tree – they can't resist, and attempt to sink their teeth into some tasty sponge.
Krinkle Krusher is a tower defence, Plants vs. Zombies-esque game in which you are tasked with defending a castle from the impending doom wrought by the aforementioned critters. You take control of a mage's glove which wears magical rings, each with different powers. Each of these has a charge bar, which when depleted must recharge, so you must tactically time attacks from them to keep your enemies at bay.
The game's kept fresh with the introduction of new magic rings, as well as different types of foe. There are a variety of Krinkles which must be dealt with in different ways: fire, tornado, or lightning. Using the correct spell will cause nearby enemies to spontaneously combust, clearing the screen quicker, and thus giving you some much needed breathing space.
It starts out quite difficult as you have very few powers in your arsenal, but the further that you get, the more comfortable you'll become with the concept. There are three worlds each containing 20 levels, and returning to these when you're more powerful is part of the fun, as there are three stars to collect on each stage. Scoop all three in one run and you'll nab a gem, and once you've got ten gems, you'll be able to increase your efficiency in combat even further.
The game is clearly aimed at children of a younger age, as is evident by the cartoon-like visual style and cheerful music. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, though, as its chirpy, uplifting, and, most importantly, cohesive.
The biggest problem, then, are the controls, which make it difficult to precisely aim your magic spells using the analogue sticks. In fact, we failed over and over due to this frustrating issue, and it never really felt like it was our fault. As a result, this is a game that you'll probably want to play on the PlayStation Vita, where the touch screen offers much more direct control. Fortunately, the package is completely cross-buy compatible.
Krinkle Krusher is a competent tower defence title with a colourful theme, but it's best played in short-bursts and doesn't really excel on the DualShock 4. There are some nice ideas here – we especially enjoyed the incentives to return to earlier levels once we'd powered up – but this is a straightforward experience at best, and, on the PS4 at least, it still has a few Krinkles that should have been ironed out.