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Casey Scheld ReviewsGame ReviewsNintendo Switch Reviews

Tadpole Treble Encore Review

Official Score

Overall - 85%

85%

Tadpole Treble Encore will be the most charming game you play this year. Despite its corny vocals, hardcore rhythm game fans will enjoy the sheer amount of replayability Baton’s grand adventure brings to the table.

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A tadpole’s life is never easy, but BitFinity does the little girl a solid by adding some sheet music with their new title Tadpole Treble Encore. Dangers, lovers, and a helpful bullfrog named Etude await – should players set off on this musical adventure?

Tadpole Treble Encore Review

The idyllic paradise of Tadpole Pond is home to Baton, a little tadpole with a big heart. Things quickly go sideways when she gets eaten by a bird and carried away from her home. What follows is a journey through chiptune paradises, midnight bayous, and the infamous Thunder Creek as she finds her way home.

This simple tale gets the job done, but it’s the charming presentation that really seals the deal. Though this title is a short adventure, each level has a unique gimmick that makes it stand out. One level will have players traversing waters backwards, while another has players overcoming frigid temps in an attempt to keep their health up. It keeps things fresh throughout, and players will have an absolute blast as they wait to see what happens next.

Gameplay is fairly straightforward – avoid the bad stuff, hit the good stuff, and get a high score and letter grade in the process. Bubbles can be collected along the way and cashed in for prizes, Pure Water and bamboo rods increase your score, and cymbals can be smacked with your tail for multipliers. Players can also fill their Treble Meter to enter Treble Charge mode, which grants a period of near-invincibility.

The one button control scheme isn’t the deepest on the market today, but it doesn’t have to be. Rather, the development team polished what is here to a shiny sheen. Each stage has a deliberate path for a perfect run, but traversing it requires multiple playthroughs and a high level of dexterity. Replayability is high, and players can even achieve certain objectives to grab themselves Challenge Flies.

Of course, a music game lives and dies by its music. While the tunes of Tadpole Treble Encore aren’t the same as the insane BPM frenzies of Konami’s Bemani series, they do fit the game like a glove. Each tune harmoniously matches the landscape of each stage, and while some of the lyrics get to be a bit too corny, these earworms will get stuck in your head – for better or worse.

In addition to extras like a bestiary, music player, and scene selection, players can also play through the entire game with one life in its marathon Concerto mode after beating the core adventure. A number of medals can also be yours for finishing certain levels in style, including an especially unique medal for doing as poor a job as possible.

For the creative among us, players will be able to make their own stages in its Composition Mode. Much like Nintendo’s Mario Paint, players will be able to place notes, objects, and tools down, all while adjusting the position, tempo, and themes. There’s a surprising amount of depth present, and players will have a grand old time tweaking these layouts to their liking.

Tadpole Treble Encore will be the most charming game you play this year. Despite its corny vocals, hardcore rhythm game fans will enjoy the sheer amount of replayability Baton’s grand adventure brings to the table.

This review of Tadpole Treble Encore was done on the Nintendo Switch. A digital code was provided by the publisher.
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Casey Scheld

Casey Scheld has more than 15 years of experience in the gaming industry as a community manager, social media director, event specialist, and (of course) gaming editor. He has previously worked with gaming start-ups like Raptr, publishers like Konami, and roller derby girls at PAX West (check out Jam City Rollergirls)! Gamers Heroes is a passion project for him, giving him a chance to tap into the underground side of gaming. He is all too eager to give these lesser-known heroes of the indie space the attention they so rightly deserve, seeking out the next gem and sharing it with the world. Previously making appearances at events like CES, GDC, and (the late) E3, he is all too happy to seek out the next big thing. For those that want to talk shop, send over a tip, or get an easy win in a fighting game of their choosing, be sure to check out his social media channels below.

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