A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this app.
Kids can learn about investigation, time management, and logic. As they search, they'll use related skills, including prediction, deduction, and puzzle solving abilities, and will work toward goals. Playing requires initiative and effort, and the app also offers a bit of experience reading and following directions. Based on the app's name, parents might think kids will also learn about technology. While they'll get brief exposure to a few tech components, like a charger, the items are only identified by name -- the app doesn't explain how they work or offer other information that would help kids truly pick up some tech knowledge while playing.
Ease of Play
The app provides a few basic game functionality instructions. Figuring out the puzzles and other challenges, though, isn't too difficult.
Violence & Scariness
Players use weapons such as an ax on inanimate objects.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Products & Purchases
Lengthy ads are shown fairly frequently. Kids can also buy batteries and other game-enhancement items with real-world cash.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Tiny Robots Recharged is a puzzle game for iOS and Android devices. The game's free to play, although players can get hints by buying battery packs that cost from $1.99 to $4.99 and can pay to remove ads from the app and unlock all levels in advance. While the instructions are fairly brief, the scenes aren't overly complex, so gamers should be able to figure out how to play without getting stuck on the initial levels. They'll be responsible, though, for figuring out what to look for and do in each level. At times, characters will handle weapons, but they're used on objects, not people. The ads that are shown between rounds aren't as nonstop as in some apps -- but they're not infrequent, and there's often a wait before you can click out of them.
Is It Any Good?
The impressive 3-D graphics in this puzzle game make exploring each scene a visual treat. In Tiny Robots Recharged, blue electricity zaps from the sky, rain falls gently onto palm trees, while gears spin and click as doors creak open. The areas players traipse around in levels are fairly small, and don't contain dozens of items. They offer an interesting, yet not overwhelming experience as a result. The app's a little light on initial instruction, but somewhat makes up for that with an easy-to-follow structure that includes items you've picked up being highlighted on the side of the screen for later use.
A bit more guidance for some aspects wouldn't hurt -- for instance, the puzzles are sometimes almost too easy, involving actions like tracing your way out of a simple maze. But without any written instructions, players may initially not be sure what to do in some, such as a puzzle that requires you to fit red- and blue-patterned blocks onto a board. The app’s camping, island, and other scenes may require patience at times to find all the items you need to use to eventually exit, which typically aren't identified until you find them. That involves looking and tapping on things to see if you can pick them up, then figuring out how to use them. You may not, for instance, know you need to locate a key in one of the scenes to open a door until you see and pick the key up. Players also may feel like they have a murky sense of where they're at in the overall game because there doesn't seem to be a central map or other way to quickly see how far they've progressed and still have to go. The app also rushes through the friend kidnapping backstory in the beginning, which could cause some confusion about the main character's motivation and other aspects. Generally, though, aside from the slightly-too-present ads, there's a fun level-based puzzle escape game experience to be had in Tiny Robots Recharged -- which should challenge, but not aggravate those who play it.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.