A lot of games, these days, especially on the mobile market, try to make the easy cash in by squeezing at gamers’ feelings of nostalgia towards days gone by, especially the subset of that crowd that especially loves the 8-bit era of gaming. There is a lot of games that are replicas of other indie and mobile hits that have pixel art coats of paint and it’s really a pain to go through all the derivative trash to find those few gems that are simply fun to play and make you forget that there’s twenty thousand other releases just like them.
Enter Dot Rangers, a game with a bit of a franchise history that I wasn’t aware of, but I didn’t really delve into past games in its franchise just yet, at the time of this writing. You see, this game actually brings to mind a very specific 8-bit title that I really enjoyed in my youth that many may have forgotten called King’s Knight for the NES made by then-named Squaresoft. It was a game that played a lot like a top-down shooter but had a lot of elements that made it unique for that time and, for that, it stuck. Dot Rangers plays kind of similarly in the fact that you progress from bottom to top in a level style similar to King’s Knight and you slowly upgrade your characters not through power-ups but through resources you gain for passing levels, watching ads and defeating enemies. Of course, these resources can be manipulated through in-app purchases, like just about any other mobile game, these days. I haven’t purchased one yet and I don’t feel pressured into it, I’ve been doing okay in the game without them.
While this game does fall victim to a poorly done translation – I’m assuming this game came from somewhere in the Orient before coming over here, first, hence the responses on the Play Store to reviews – and the inability to gather much in the way of anything while not in game, even though it advertises itself as an “Auto-RPG,” this game has a style that I can really appreciate and allows me some casual time between serious releases.
The base game itself is free on the Play Store right now, so I would strongly suggest giving it a look if you can spare the space and like a casual and light retro-styled RPG that doesn’t feel too bogged down by conventional mobile trappings.