Skip to content

Review: Guncho is a fresh but sparse tactical roguelike

Developer: Tinytouchtales
Price: Free
Size: 174 MB
Version: 1.0.3
Platform: iPhone & iPad


Guncho is another to add to the Tinytouchtales roster of compelling turn-based gameplay loops. It returns to the compact roguelike tactics of ENYO, albeit with a unique combat mechanic and a fresh setting.

This time you’re taking on waves of enemies on a series of Wild West-themed, hex-based levels. Your swarthy gunslinger, as well as the various enemies characters, can move in one of six directions on each turn.

The revolver cylinder indicates which directions you can attack

The key twist here is a revolver-themed combat system. Each bullet in your gun’s cylinder corresponds to a direction you can shoot in. Every move or shot sees that cylinder rotating, which invariably leaves more and more empty chambers as you blast your way through the field.

You can reload when empty, and even remove bullets to hasten the reload, but each ejected bullet will take up a valuable turn. That’s a luxury you can seldom afford, thanks to the tight levels and the range of enemies converging on your location. Charging rams butt you from across the level, miners lob time-delayed dynamite, and Cowgirls can pull you in close with their lassos.

Improve your gunslinger between levels

Thankfully, those enemies are a danger to themselves as much as you, and can often be tempted into taking one another out. There are also environmental elements like fire and explosive barrels that can be targeted for an indirect attack.

Then there are the optional enhancements that crop up after each level. These can modify your ammo in some way, making certain shots explosive or giving you more range, for example. Alternatively you can opt for a new ability, which might enable you to swap with an adjacent enemy or jump two tiles away.

Runs end all to soon

The fundamentals are really well executed here, creating a compelling gameplay loop even as you repeatedly fail. You can even earn retries if you’re willing to sit through an ad, or else pay the $4.99/£4.99 unlock fee to remove ads for good.

Guncho doesn’t quite feel like the finished article, however. The run of six levels leading up to a boss encounter should be the first of several themed levels, but that’s essentially the entirety of the experience, barring Expert and Daily run options.

The graphics engine is somewhat basic

The graphics, too, feel a little basic. This is the first 3D game in the Tinytouchtales library, and in truth we missed the distinct 2D art style of previous titles. The 3D engine feels a little basic and janky, especially during the close-up death animations, though it’s nice to see this prolific solo dev experimenting with new ideas.

Guncho is essentially an excellent central mechanic crying out to be fleshed out into a full game. As a free download it’s well worth your attention, but you may be left with an itchy trigger finger.