Review

Lemmings Touch

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The chance to play as a Lemmings god is finally at your fingertips in this touch-enabled PS Vita release of our favourite wacky rodents. Once again the Lemming kingdom has called upon you to save them as they relentlessly forge their way through more than a hundred perilous stages.

This time around, however, you will actually have to lift a finger to save them thanks to the touchscreen interface – but who said being a saviour was easy?

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What You Need to Know

Lemmings Touch hardly deviates from the tried-and-tested success story of past Lemmings games. The premise is simple: Lemmings drop from the sky and you have to bestow various Lemmings with the appropriate skills to get them through the level unscathed. How you pass each level is often up to some creative license but the common thread across each stage is the desire to save as many of the suicidal Lemmings in as little time as possible.

Levels vary in aesthetic design and theme, ranging from the mysterious Crystal Caves to the downright depressing Fiery Hell stages. Some levels require quickfire reflexes to get the rodents home, while others will rely on more creative planning. In certain instances there are sliding platforms and liftable objects that you must control using the touch interface.

Lemmings can be bestowed with skills ranging from bashing through objects, building bridges and blocking other Lemmings from plummeting to their doom, but in some cases, a Lemming or two will have to meet the ultimate sacrifice for the benefit of the pack (I’m not really sure what the collective noun is for a group of Lemmings, and although I think a suicide of Lemmings or a leap of Lemmings is far more appropriate, I’ll stick to ‘pack’ for the benefit of readers).

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What’s New?

Lemmings Touch follows the same mechanics as previous Lemmings games so for newcomers to the Lemmings franchise, this game is not that much different to past titles.

Where Lemmings Touch deviates is in its presentation and user interface – Lemmings Touch is, well, all about the touchscreen. Selecting Lemmings is done by prodding them or using the horizontal D-Pad buttons which brings up a movable skills cloud wheel (yes, a cloud wheel … it’s a floating cloud with a wheel of selectable skills). The game can be paused at any moment using LB and accelerated using RB. Pinch-to-zoom allows you to zoom in on your Lemmings if you’re feeling all touchy feely with them, and you can scroll the entire level by swiping across or using the left or right sticks.

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There are moving platforms, switches, aimable cannons and trampolines, and more interactive objects in some levels that require a bit of finger finesse to use correctly lest you accelerate your Lemmings to their doom.

Achieving objective-based challenges within the game (e.g. building over an exit, or exploding a Lemming) earns additional coins which are spent in the store to customise your Lemmings’ appearance.

Alas, someone must have fed some of our Lemmings after midnight because in addition to the standard green-haired blue-overall’ed Lemmings, there are now also ‘Mischievous Lemmings’ – these little terrors are out for one thing, mischief. If you allow any one of them to be saved they’ll sabotage the exit for everyone so you have to make sure they never make it to the end.

What’s the Same?

Lemmings Touch is a lemmings game. The puzzles and challenges are all more or less the same, in their simplest form. With the touchscreen interface aside, Lemmings Touch plays out like a standard Lemmings game and if you’re a fan of the old, you’ll be a fan of the new.

Completing a level to unlock maximum stars is a recurring addiction that will find you often hitting that nuke button to send your poor furries into an explosive splendour when you just miss the mark for three stars.

You’ll Enjoy Lemmings Touch If You Liked…

… Any of the previous Lemmings games: The puzzles, the challenges and the creative ways to get through a level are all the same as before.

… most other fast-paced hair-trigger styled puzzle games that require quick reflexes and a crafty solution.

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What I Liked

- 3.) The nostalgia factor. Lemmings Touch is as much about a trip down memory lane as it is about saving your Lemmings! I am relieved to know that Lemmings Touch hasn’t lost any of the entertaining challenges that Lemmings posed to me all those years ago. Much like the little rodents’ hair, Lemmings The Game seems to be evergreen.

- 2.) The quest for maximum stars per level is addictive. So addictive, in fact, that I would nuke my Lemmings the moment I realised I could not achieve a perfect score for the level.

- 1.) The levels made me think out of the box – often the most obvious solution is the best solution, but other times there is simply no obvious solution and when I completed a level I was left wondering if maybe there’s a more direct way to pass the level. The open-ended solutions kept me guessing and intrigued to try a level over-and-over.

Favourite Moment

Any time that I was able to get all of my Lemmings out of a bind without losing one of them was a great moment for me. Unfortunately, the moments are not particularly memorable to the extent that I would share the tales of Lemmings salvation to anyone over dinner, nor lunch for that matter. Its achievements are satisfying but extremely short-lived moments of celebration.

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What I Didn’t Like

- 3.) Not being able to zoom out fast enough to get the whole level into perspective at one time posed an unnecessary headache, particularly in the levels where Lemmings were spawning from multiple starting points (and even more so when there was molten lava in between them).

- 2.) I may be getting far too used to games like FTL that allow you to pause and issue commands, but I felt that I should be entitled to do so in Lemmings Touch. If I had a bunch of Lemmings about to simultaneously take swan-dives into molten lava on opposite ends of the level, I would have liked to be able to pause and assign each Lemming with the build skill in time to save them all. Unfortunately this is not possible which means it’s in real-time or nothing, which obviously poses a challenge when you have delays in response times.

- 1.) The touchscreen interface is a bit iffy. I often had difficulty with timing my skills assignments to a Lemming on the precipice and the response time between a tap and the Lemming getting the build skill was too slow, ending in my little pioneer plummeting to his demise.

Least Favourite Moment

Losing my Lemmings because of a delayed response in the interface. I’d furiously tap the skill I want to assign only to find my Lemming obliviously prancing his way past and onwards to greener pastures.


Lemmings Touch Review – Launch Trailer


What’s Extra?

There are objective-based challenges in Lemmings Touch that earn you additional coins to customise your Lemmings. Three objectives are available at a time which enables you to decide how and when to make a shot for the gold.

The Bottom Line

Lemmings Touch brings back the good old fun of Lemmings, now at your fingertips, as you challenge yourself to unlock a perfect score on each level or find different ways to beat your time. It’s back to the basic but addictive fun of the Lemmings franchise with Lemmings Touch!


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