Top Critic Average
Rollers of the Realm is just as good as when I first encountered it at this year's E3. It's an enormously fun and creative take on two genres you would never think to see in bed together. The gameplay is tight and responsive, the boards are intricate and clever, and the splendid voice acting is an added delight. Rollers is in nearly every way more than you'd expect from a typical pinball game. At just $9.99, this a great holiday buy if you're looking for a digital stocking stuffer or just want something fun and new.
This bizarre pairing of a pinball game, puzzle and RPG is far from being a match made in heaven, but it works... In a very strange way. A fun little story, cheap price and reasonably well thought out gameplay makes Rollers of the Realm a game you're going to want to try, if only because it's different.
Rollers of the Realm gets points for its unique play style and responsive, approachable play. It's definitely not an easily mastered mix of genres, but it's well-done enough that it takes more skill and concentration than it does luck.
Rollers of the Realm is much more than a pinball game. For the measly price of $9.99, it is absolutely worth getting even if pinball games aren't normally your thing, there is plenty here to enjoy anyway.
It blew me away how invested I had become in a pinball. While the story might not be the most epic thing that you've ever played, Rollers of the Realm is definitely worth a shot.
While the game lacks in the RPG category thanks to a bare-bones story and horrendous voice acting, the pinball portion more than makes up for it with its fantastic gameplay and addicting level designs.
With plenty of levels, several endless modes and multiple characters, there's a lot of replay value to be had in Rollers of the Realm. The relatively toned back violence makes this a game I'd readily recommend to younger audiences, and the story is very good on the inclusivity front with representation for characters of various races, genders and ages. Phantom Compass has their quirky combination of pinball and role playing wrapped up tightly in a fun, agreeable package with excellent mechanics and a keen attention to detail. Rollers of the Realm comes highly recommended to all players looking for some casual fun, regardless of RPG or pinball experience.
Fortunately, Rollers of the Realm shares enough in other joys. It's clear it likes pinball as much as it likes role-playing games, because the whole game is one big love letter to both, the things mashed together into some odd blender without reason or deeper purpose. It doesn't really need any; what's here is a kind of pure, childlike delight, one that makes it okay to grind gold to buy daggers for my pinball-shaped rogue forever. Nothing about it makes sense, but who cares? Rollers of the Realm just wants to turn you into a pinball wizard.
Rollers of the Realm, by most respects, is an excellent pinball and RPG hybrid. However, it takes a great amount of skill and no small share of luck to get through it.
Rollers of the Realm presents a lovely concept that follows through with its aims, although not to the degree that some players may be expecting. Yes, it offers pinball play, but not the kind you'd get at an actual arcade. It's quite nuanced and based on selecting the right ball per circumstance. It also only samples from the RPG platter rather than going all in, but the result is mostly charming. With a bit more polish and tweaking, Rollers of the Realm would stand out for more than its genre mixing.
Honestly a game like this deserves a bit of praise. It set out with a goal many didn't even know existed, struggled uphill against unknown hurdles, and still managed to come out great. While the story may be short it never feels weary or too skimpy, while the gameplay can feel unfair at times it is also fun, and the game is simply fun on the whole, achieving the notable 'one more turn' feeling for most of the levels. It probably won't get people gushing over it, but there is no denying that it is well made and above average as well.
'Rollers of the Realm' nearly does for pinball what 'Puzzle Quest' did for the match-three genre. It competently takes an existing medium and merges it with roleplaying elements to create something that hasn't been done before, which is unusual in gaming. A few design problems keep it from greatness, like a very cold, withholding system of progression. That doesn't stop it from being an enjoyable experience and something worth trying for any pinball or RPG fan.
Rather than combining the two genres into a perfect blend, Phantom Compass has diluted both before mixing them conservatively. Rollers of the Realm is more gin and tonic than anything else: refreshing, quite enjoyable for the short time it lasts, yet some will find it's not to their tastes. It may not be a perfect amalgamation of Pinball FX 2 and Dragon Age, but RotR is still an above average game with a unique concept and good value for money.
Phantom Compass seems so tied up in getting the single player RPG elements to plug in, that in the shuffle it has missed what's needed to make a compelling pinball experience.
Rollers of the Realm strives for true innovation by fusing the pinball and RPG genres. There are some clever spins on traditional pinball gameplay, and it's bizarre yet fascinating to see how a story, characters, and RPG stats and abilities are interwoven with this. It's unfortunate, then, that irritating design faults and questionable ball physics significantly mire the ideas at work. It's certainly an unexpected journey, but it's wrought with joys and pains that you should take into consideration, whether you're a pinball connoisseur or not.
Rollers of the Realm just never lives up to its potential. Here's hoping that this mediocre offering doesn't spell the end for this genre, though, as I honestly feel we would be worse off for it.
It's not a game for everyone; to get the most from this game, you already have to be a pinball fan…and I don't know many pinball fans. Still, for only $9.99 at release, I'd say it's worth a shot.