TouchArcade Game of the Week: ‘Little Big Workshop’

We can always count on HandyGames to bring us premium mobile ports of fantastic console and PC games, and this week they’ve done it again with a new mobile version of Mirage Game Studio’s 2019 factory management sim Little Big Workshop. A factory sim is a perfect type of genre for the touchscreen, but Little Big Workshop is a bit different from your typical fare. Yes you will be creating and expanding your own little business, laying things out to your liking, ordering equipment to make a variety of items, hiring and managing a staff of workers, and more.

What especially stuck out to me about this game in particular are the smaller details. You’ll have a hand in each individual step of the items you choose to manufacture, meaning you can choose various types of materials or manufacturing processes that will have an effect on the item’s outcome. Higher quality materials cost more but make for a sturdier product, or rushing through certain processes to hit an accelerated deadline will make your customers happy but will result in an inferior product. There’s also a dynamic market demand to keep an eye on which should help guide you in what products to make based on what’s hot and selling for the most profit.

That’s just a couple of examples, but it’s these ribbons of realism that are woven into the otherwise cutesy and laid-back nature of the simulation in Little Big Workshop that makes this such a compelling experience. It’s deeper than it looks on the surface, but still not overwhelming and remains very accessible even if you don’t know the first thing about production or management. Don’t get me wrong, there are LOTS of systems to learn and understand, but it’s very satisfying to get the hang of things as you scale up your operation and get it running like a well-oiled machine.

In that sense Little Big Workshop should appeal to those who enjoyed stuff like Factorio, but also those who crave more of a business management angle worked in. That’s kind of the sweet spot this game finds itself in. The port itself is great though text can feel a bit tiny on the iPhone at times, but otherwise the interface and UI have all been reworked for the touchscreen wonderfully as we’ve come to expect from HandyGames. It’s also the full experience as its console and PC counterpart but for half the price, so if you need a new premium sim to chew on over this coming weekend I think Little Big Workshop will fit that bill nicely.

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