Tiny Death Star Is the Cutest Star Wars Themed Phone Game Ever

Take THAT, Angry Birds!
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We’ve been anxiously awaiting the release of the new Tiny Tower/Star Wars crossover for months now, and finally it was released in the American iTunes store yesterday — for free! Naturally, we have some thoughts.

If you’ve played Tiny Tower before, then you know the objective: to build and populate a giant tower, level by level, in order to make as much money as possible. As with all simulation games, it’s a bit of a simplification of the way an actual economy actually sustains itself. Weirdly, it works a lot better when you make it about evil. In Tiny Tower, all your little bitizens weren’t happy unless they had jobs, so you had to get them jobs or they would be sad. In Tiny Death Star, your bitizens must secure employment for the good of the Empire!

Speaking of evil, Tiny Death Star also has a dark underbelly that Tiny Tower didn’t — namely, the Imperial floor levels. These exist below all the residential, retail, and service floors, and allow you to do stuff like “steal rebel secrets” for extra rewards.


It’s clear from the sheer level of detail in Tiny Death Star that its creators know their Star Wars — or, at the very least, they know what people like about Star Wars. For example, it’s set firmly in the time period of the original series. You’ll see the occasional Gungan or Toydarian wandering around, sure, but Jar Jar Binks isn’t going to show up demanding to sing at Rebo’s Karaoke — or worse, Anakin Skywalker. It would be weird for him to appear at a cantina that’s owned and operated by his evil future self, after all. Of course, this isn’t that great for players who wan’t to see a little more representation, because you only really get different versions of Leia and Lando to cover the not-a-white-dude contingent. Still, I’d rather that than have to deal with an 8-bit Hayden Christensen. I really would.

And how adorable are those 8-bit characters? So adorable that I almost like Gungans now — I seriously get excited when I see a creature or character I recognize. And they get obscure — anything from Twi’leks to Arconas. Although, to be fair, not every cutesy addition works. Every time you come back to the game, a little animated Emperor spins around in his chair and tells you how much your Death Star has made while you were away; it’s wonderful at first, but after a while you start to get bored of waiting those precious seconds while he turns around.


As with Tiny Tower, Tiny Death Star isn’t a game that can take up the entirety of your attention in the same way that something like Temple Run or Angry Birds can. It’s best in short bursts. Unless you want to pay actual real-person money for “Imperial Bux” so you can make everything go faster, but take it from us — it’s really not worth spending $1.99 just to complete construction on your Rancor pit.

Best of all, though, is the adorable, Muzak-style background music, as heard in the below trailer:

If they put out MP3s of those, then we’d throw some money at this app. For sure.

Tiny Death Star is available at both the iTunes store and on Google Play. And it’s free! Even if you’re not a Tiny Tower fan, it’s worth downloading just to see all the cute little droids just once. We promise.

(images via Tiny Death Star)

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