For the loving masses of Kairosoft fans out there, allow us to summarize our thoughts on this game with just a few words: Kairobotica is an insta-buy. There, now you can spend the extra time patrolling planets, defeating evil snack foods, felling fowl robots, and leveling-up your own 'bots in the hyper-addicting RPG simulation hybrid manner that Kairosoft does so well. If you need a little more convincing, or you feel that reading this author's work is a joy unto itself, by all means, sit back and learn all about one of the best Kairosoft releases yet!
Like Game Dev Story, Dungeon Village, and the other "Story" games that before it, Kairobotica puts you in charge of a tiny pixel community and gives you the power to form it as you see fit. Gameplay is divided between managing your colony and working with the Kairobot Corps, a "state-of-the-art brigade of mass-produced guardians of galactic peace", a.k.a. tiny yellow-faced machines that specialize in RPG-style combat. By increasing the size of your home turf, you can improve your machines in a number of ways, allowing them to fight off the monsters that have infested this corner of the galaxy, all courtesy of the moderately evil Doctor Mochipon!
Your flying colony can travel between worlds, parking itself near a planet so your team can go on patrol, complete missions, and entertain the locals with your many wond'rous sights. Use the touch interface to set up houses and factories to get your game started. Houses hold kairobots for your combat force, while factories replenish them when they die. As soon as a mission is available, head out on patrol. The side view combat will be familiar to anyone who has played an 8- or 16-bit RPG. Select attack options from the menu and your party of robots will carry out your orders. When they take damage, their number is reduced, but when you win, you move on to the next section, ready for a bigger challenge. Make it to the end and you'll get some nice mission bonuses, but if you're defeated, you'll have to start all over again.
Through combat you'll gain gold, experience, items and more, and you'll take those earnings back to the colony to improve things. One aspect of the game is increasing tourism to your flying space wonder. You'll accomplish this by upgrading buildings (which also helps out the combat side of things), creating special structures like gift shops or pastures, and by using items on squares to increase their "fun" rating. The more a planet's people like you, the better your amity score will be, the higher their population will climb, and the more you'll earn from these continually evolving species.
Analysis: Make sure you have a few hours free before you download this game. It has the ability to draw you in and not let you go until your phone's battery starts bellyaching. The learning curve is shallower than many Kairosoft games, but the complexity is still there, it just doesn't get introduced until later. The way Kairobotica expands is quite elegant. The more planets you have access to, the more missions you can complete, the more upgrades you can buy, the more random events you'll encounter, and the more fun you'll have.
The interface for Kairobotica is Kairosoft's standard pseudo-non-smartphone layout that has always felt a bit cramped for some player's liking. A round d-pad menu can be shown or stashed, and using it to control the game is often a more precise way to go. Either way, managing your robots or checking in on the latest space tourist sale isn't so difficult, and before long you'll handle it without a second thought.
If pressed to explicate any shortcomings, it would be worth mentioning that Kairobotica's battles can be a bit slow-paced, especially if you decide to undertake extra patrols just for the experience. Combat isn't as much about tactics as it is about number superiority, and the only tough decision you'll make is deciding when to retreat to heal your forces. Otherwise, you just sit back and watch the battles play out.
Kairobotica shares a lot with Epic Astro Story and its other Kairosoft cousins. But the adventure is something new entirely. Epic in scope but personal in nature, your flying colony will be your home as you see what strange and desolate planets are out there in the universe. Just load up on helper robots, remember that donuts can be evil, and get ready for a long and satisfying game. We weren't kidding when we said it was an insta-buy.