I just want to get this out of the way right off the bat: I have never once before in my life played League of Legends, or any other Defense of the Ancients inspired games, and thus any incorrect info found within is based on explanations that I was given second hand.
One day a derpy-looking steam-punk robot is sitting around with a bunch of fluffy little critters — that are apparently known as Poros — when suddenly an evil snake-dragon thing rushes forward and begins gobbling the critters up. Being a heroic sort of robot, because somewhere there is an unwritten law about all derpy-looking steam-punk robots secretly being good, Blitzcrank decides to quickly gather up the Poros before Baron Nashor can. Thus goes the premise to Blitzcrank’s Poro Roundup (out now, free), a high quality promotional game — that will be available until September 21st — that Riot Games designed to celebrate an event currently happening over on in League of Legends.
Being a mighty machine, Blitzcrank himself doesn’t ever have to worry about the ravenous Baron Nashor catching up with him; the same — however — can’t be said of the many little fuzz balls currently on the diabolical serpent’s lunch menu. As a result it will be Blitzcrank’s goal to scoop up the various tiring creatures as he charges past them, safely depositing them inside his giant chest cavity (because clearly that is a safe place). Helping out with this task will be Blitzcrank’s extendable arm, because you’re not truly a proper derpy-looking steam-punk inspired robot if you don’t have an extendable arm that can be launched to grab far away objects.
Touching either the top or bottom of your screen’s left-hand side will instruct Blitzcrank to move appropriately; running towards the right — however — is fully automatic, seeing as how Baron Nashor is eternally mere inches behind our hero. Meanwhile, touching anywhere on the screen’s other end will instruct Blitzcrank to launch forward his mighty retractable arm (which can be used to grab Poros, power-ups, and sometimes villains). Although this might at first seem to be an overly simplistic setup, you’ll quickly discover that keeping those fluffy Poros safe from Baron Nashor’s gaping maw is actually anything but simple.
The first problem you’ll run into is that not all of the Poros are created equal, with some of them running far faster than others (with a few of the really heavy ones simply giving up on running entirely). This means the Poros you’ll be striving to keep out of Baron Nashor’s stomach won’t necessarily all be reaching Blitzcrank in an orderly fashion, a matter that is then further complicated by the fact that some Poros have “special powers.” Poisonous Poros temporarily slowdown Blitzcrank if you grab them while gassy, Flaming Poros can’t be grabbed at all while on fire, Ice Poros must be hit once just to break their armor, Mage Poros can make others untouchable until you grab them first, and so forth.
These various defenses — that crafty Poros somehow have against being saved — would quickly add up to an utterly unmitigated nightmare for Blitzcrank, but thankfully there is one last basic tool left in this automaton’s heroic arsenal. Bumping into any of these fluffy critters — either from the front, or from the side — will cause both of them to begin frantically running away much faster (I say both, as Poros always seem to come in twos). Thus with a crafty mix of telescopic grabbing — heroic body bumping — as well as some really fast planning, you just might manage to keep those adorable little fluff balls from becoming Baron Nashor’s latest afternoon snack.
Occasionally a successfully grabbed Poro will drop a power-up for Blitzcrank to snatch up, which then — in order to be used — must be grabbed with Blitzcrank’s arm (bumping into them will simply knock them forward, the same as any Poro). These can do things such as restore Blitzcrank’s vigor (he becomes demotivated with each Poro eaten), safely teleport every Poro away, feed yummy snacks to the Poros that speed them up, and more. League of Legends fans will especially be in for a treat whenever they grab the armor power-up, this item not only summons Braum to run behind them — holding a massive shield — but will also cause any shield bounced Poros to sport a Braum-stache afterwards.
Eventually — should you successfully save enough Poros — you’ll come across the current stage’s boss, all of whom are actually various playable characters from League of Legends. For reasons not fully understood, each and every last one of them seem to be quite hell bent upon stopping poor Blitzcrank in his noble mission to scoop up all of the hapless fluffy critters. Although Blitzcrank is fully capable of bopping these trouble makers by reaching out and grabbing them, he’ll still have to save Poros — all while evading the other character’s attacks — until he’s close enough to successfully grab them.
Getting through these bosses will be especially important to the player since they’re your primary source for earnable gold coins, with each Poro saved additionally serving as a much smaller source of gold. These coins — which must exclusively be earned, since Blitzcrank’s Poro Roundup is thankfully devoid of any IAP options whatsoever — can then be spent after the player’s current session ends. With these players can purchase permanent ability upgrades (of which two can be equipped at any given moment), as well as alternative skins for Blitzcrank and his various League of Legends friends.
Yes — you read that correctly — there are other playable characters to utilize towards your Poro saving exploits, beyond Blitzcrank himself, each of whom may be unlocked by finishing story-mode with a different character. Since the game’s story-mode allows people to pick up where they failed whenever they continue, unlocking all of the game’s various Poro-saving heroes is thankfully a matter of time alone. Although these other characters play similarly, they still have significant differences; Thresh the grim reaper — for instance — has a long windup followed by the ability to capture two Poros at once.
Stacked on top of all this are a plethora of different achievements to strive for, an endless-mode that is unlocked the first time you finish the story-mode, and a high score list to slowly conquer. Furthermore, although certainly not a prerequisite for fun, those whom are fans of League of Legends will be met with a never-ending cavalcade of various references for them to spot and appreciate. Ultimately — between the engaging game play, the depth of content, and the total lack of IAPs — about the only way one could go wrong with Blitzcrank’s Poro Roundup is to not download it before September 21st.
Blitzcrank’s Poro Roundup is an amazingly involving game for something being released as a wholly free app to promote an event currently happening in League of Legends. Players have to — utilizing Blitzcrank’s telescoping arm — use quick thinking to keep the ravenous Baron Nashor from devouring the numerous fleeing Poros, a task that is perpetually complicated as new obstacles are slowly added. With a ton of tiny references sure to please League of Legends fans — yet still more than enjoyable enough to entertain anyone else — this game has something for everyone, and the only mistake possible would be to not grab it before September 21st.