After a torrential downpour, it’s not the animals that need rescuing, but flowers. One bigger flower jumps into the resulting Tiny Pond (out now, $0.99 – half-price launch sale) to save his friends. Of course, as with any story or game, there are obstacles to avoid and goals to meet.
Apart from saving his fellow flowers, our hero also wishes to guide the butterflies home. So in every level, you’ll have three smaller flowers to rope in, and three yellow butterflies to bump into.
The controls are simple. To move the flower, you’ll have to tap behind it, to propel it via ripples. The downside to this is it will take lots of tapping to maneuver the flower around the various obstacles.
Dangerous obstacles to avoid include prickly nuts and a big blue fish, which will spell instant death if touched. In Tiny Pond, you’ll get no extra lives. If your flower dies, you’ll have to restart the level from the beginning, and there are no save points. Sometimes, you’ll need to bump things in order to complete a level. Some gateways are too narrow for your flower to pass through. By touching a bouncy toadstool, you can shrink your flower. It will shed little balls (petals, perhaps), which you can pick up again. This is an important point to note: your flower will need to reach a minimum size in order to collect its smaller flower friends. Fortunately, the tiny balls may also be moved with ripples.
After you’ve collected the three small flowers, a portal will open, and you may have to backtrack to it in order to exit the pond. I didn’t enjoy this occasional backtracking, which felt like a chore. I also feel this game calls for some patience. The faster you try to negotiate through a level the more likely you are to make mistakes and have to start all over again. Overall, the game graphics are pleasant, and the music’s charming.
Tiny Pond is a fun and leisurely game with cute graphics that should attract kids. Also, the game controls are simple enough for anyone to pick up, young or old, though it may appeal more to those with greater patience.