I always find it strange when games make the jump from mobile to more “standard” platforms. Toast Time, a frantic arcade style game with dashes of puzzle and tower defense thrown in for good measure, is no exception to this. From the moment I started it up, it was pretty obvious that it had been ported over from a design that was created for phones and tablets, but that didn’t take away from it much – if anything, it added to the old-school charm of it by keeping things in the kind of tight, limited play space that was featured in old arcade machines and many early video games.
Even after playing, I’m not entirely sure that I know which genre Toast Time fits best. It’s equal parts fast-paced shooter, tower defense, and physics puzzler. The idea is that you, as TERRY (“Toast-Ejecting Recoil & Reload System”) must protect morning time, represented by a clock, from an invasion of evil aliens who’ve come to take the spare time from Earth for … well, okay, the story isn’t particularly well-developed or important. The point is, you’re launching toast and other breakfast foods, flinging your hefty metal body around, and using environmental elements to destroy enemies and defend the clock until the timer runs down and you move on to the next stage.
The gameplay in Toast Time is pretty great, if somewhat tough to get the hang of. The idea is that you can fire your toast or other projectiles in any direction, and off they go to destroy whatever they touch. Meanwhile, the intrepid toaster TERRY hurtles off haphazardly in the opposite direction, keeping things interesting. If traditional attacks aren’t doing it, you can force TERRY to the top of the screen and allow him to fall, smashing into the ground with an impact that can destroy or stun enemies. A bevy of weapons, ranging from rapid-fire breadcrumbs to area-clearing bread pudding bombs and much more, round out the arsenal at your disposal, adding another layer of strategic thought to it all.
All things considered, Toast Time is nothing revolutionary or groundbreaking, but it’s a lot of fun and there’s just enough to the mechanics to generate an interesting and enjoyable chaos. It’s simple, to the point, and offers a decent amount of stuff to do, including a “survival” mode to really test your skills once you’ve got the hang of it. For a mere $4.99 on Steam, it’s entirely worth taking a chance on if you’re looking for a fun diversion that won’t take too much time, is great for short bursts of pick up play, and is sprinkled with a delightful sampling of wry humor and crazy action.