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Little Wheel

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Rating: 4.7/5 (738 votes)
Comments (91) | Views (16,173)

DoraLittle WheelAsk anybody what the saddest thing is and you'll get a different answer. And probably a wrong one, too. Because the fact is that the saddest thing is not a kitten in the rain, a little boy with a skinned knee, or a crying clown — especially because clowns are evil and deserve any misery they get. No, friends, the saddest thing is one little robot, all alone in the world, who needs your help. Little Wheel, from the fine folks at One Click Dog, is a point-and-click adventure with the most style tucked into it's itty-bitty package that you've ever seen.

Best of Casual Gameplay 2009Little Wheel is the story of a world of self-sufficient robots. Everything runs like clockwork until one day when a mishap at the power core shuts down the entire civilization. After ten thousand years of rusting, a chance lightning strike restores power to one small hero, who sets out to start everything back up again.

Little Wheel is played entirely with the mouse, and the design could not be friendlier. There's no hunting for pixels or hot-spots, as things you can interact with are highlighted by a gray circle. Instead of collecting seemingly random items and rubbing them against everything to see if it advances the story, most puzzles in the game are solved simply by choosing to click these interactive areas in their correct order.

As such, it takes a lot of the thinking out of what would otherwise be some really difficult puzzles. Click on something and Little Wheel will putter off to investigate, and watching its actions will give you clues as to the order in which you should proceed. The journey isn't a long one, but it's a delight to see what new obstacle your little mechanical buddy has to tackle next.

Analysis: It would be a lot easier to feel sadder about Little Wheel's predicament if the whole thing wasn't so gosh darn pretty. Little Wheel's simple palette of sepia and black is still able to produce a remarkably detailed silhouette world. Structures and characters are rendered with loving detail, down to every winch and switch, and animated with just as much care. Everything moves as smoothly as a penguin sliding down a hill made of butter. Which, take my word for it, is very smooth indeed!

The only real complaint I have with Little Wheel is how short and relatively easy it is. Even if you don't use a walkthrough, it doesn't take long to figure out which item onscreen to click first. There are times when it's more like watching an animated short than playing a game, but the sheer amount of polish that has gone into it more than makes up for its length. If sacrificing an hour of gameplay has lead us to this gorgeously rendered and animated adventure, then that's a sacrifice I'm willing to make.

Aided by a mellow, finger-snappin' jazz soundtrack that makes me want to kick back in a fedora and tell everyone to "Just relax, maaaan", Little Wheel is a stellar example of its genre. Its length and lack of replay value make it something more suited to a lunchbreak than a whole afternoon, but a healthy dose of charm and undeniable quality will make it one of the most memorable point-and-click adventures in a long while.

Play Little Wheel

Cheers to Dan for sending this one in! =)


I really like this game, it seperates itself from most point and clicks, and has a proggressive, yet simple game layout, and i like the animation plus problems that arise don't seem too impossible.


another thing that i would like to add and thank the developers for is the lack of pixel hunting!


amazing game. The graphics remind me of vector park

Eireyes June 9, 2009 4:29 PM

Although I enjoyed the game and thought the graphics were superb and the music fun to listen to, I wish it were longer and perhaps a bit more challenging. All in all, a good game to take a short break to.

waycooler June 9, 2009 4:32 PM

That was awesome. Loved the art style and the music. Not so much how short it was though. But I still liked it.

The intro was so depressing! Like, "Oh hey it accidentally shut off the power, the city turns off, etc etc... Wait, for 10,000 years?! :("

Miasere June 9, 2009 4:40 PM

Very nice but very simple.


Agree with what's been said so far. I got to the end and thought I'd missed something along the way that lead to the adventure.

Of course, I just got done wasting two days on Gemcraft 0 so my bias is set.

Cyberjar88 June 9, 2009 5:00 PM

need help with:

the three circles.



I got it by making all the lines synch up and then clicking the left one again.

Anonymous June 9, 2009 5:11 PM

Fab game, wish it had been longer. Adore the jazz. Let's have another one soon!


Fun, easy game with loads of atmosphere. Nice!


Beautiful animation. I loved the way the robot crashes and falls into scenes.

It was easy, but it's nice to have some P&Cs be at different skill levels.

Anyway, I agree with others, this is too short! Please make more...


I love how they made the illusion of depth! I also love this game. Hey, maybe the creator can create a MMO for it! 2.5d, of course, like it is here.

richmcd June 9, 2009 5:39 PM

I broke it.

In the scene pictured in the screenshot I somehow managed to separate the top and bottom of the crane and now I have no hotspots to click. The top portion of the crane is floating in midair and I guess I'll have to restart.

Anonymous June 9, 2009 5:48 PM

Lol. Didn't get the first puzzle (that's sad).


richmd, you are clairvoyant. You wrote the words that were waiting in my fingers.


I found a glitch.

The level with the crane, I turned the crane around, clicked to make the cranehead go down, and then clicked on "forward". The bottom part of the crane rolled forward but the top part stayed where it was! Then the game became frozen, with the music continuing, but the mechanical sound effect repeating every 5 seconds or so.

I took a screenshot if the maker wants to see it.

Re: the game's style. There's easy and then there's too easy, and this is the latter. If it was just "hover and the cursor changes" that would be cool. But as it is, there's often only one hotspot there.

It's more like interactive art than a game, really.

Very pretty, though.

Anonymous June 9, 2009 5:54 PM

Wow - that was beautiful. I can't wait to show my kids, they'll love it.


Okay, I did it differently, but I froze it again at the same spot. *sighs*

I'll come back when the glitch is fixed.


I *love* that this game shows the hotspots. That pretty much takes away the majority of my adventure game frustrations. Now if there was more than one thing you could *do* with hotspots that would also be awesome and make the puzzles non-trivial while not making it impossible to tell what stuff I can interact with.


very cool fun game

Czaerana June 9, 2009 6:37 PM

I'm stuck at the power plant where there is a plug hanging down (circled) and two circled buttons to the right. Help! I've hit those buttons a jillion times. Cute game, in any case.


Easy, yes, but adorable, and with snazzy style. :-)

Czaerana June 9, 2009 6:44 PM

To quote Miss Emily, "Never mind!" Got it.:-)


How could you find fault with this game?

Its a huge winner for those who had a really long day and just want something cute and cheery and easy going on the frazzled brain cells
3 million cups of tea out of 10
just found a fault with it

its just toooo short I want more!

blakyoshi7 June 9, 2009 6:45 PM

See this? This right here? This is what point and click adventure games SHOULD be like.


The graphics were amazing! <3

Danielle June 9, 2009 7:25 PM

Short and sweet! What a nice little diversion to relax with after working all day!


Joye I'll ask the developer to fix that glitch as soon as possible.

Zachary June 9, 2009 8:24 PM

I really don't think the walkthrough was a necessary addition to the game. It's easy enough with simple trial-and-error.

I find fault with this game's total lack of difficulty. No, I don't want to pixel-hunt nonstop or anything like that, but I think that this game would have remained relatively easy without every clickable object encircled for you.

blockhose June 9, 2009 8:54 PM

Wow - Great game design! If only all games were so artfully rendered...

My only complaints echo Dora's analysis: Too short, and too simple. No doubt it takes a lot of hours to produce something so beautiful, but if the creators could develop a detailed and interesting "escape game" world with some longevity to it, it could easily challenge for best JIG game of the year.

I'd like to see the people at One Click Dog build on this first incarnation and really develop something with chops, puzzle-wise.


I totally love this game! The animation is smooth and the hotspots go along with that same Bowja the Ninja formula. The destruction is wanton and yet charmingly... robot.

Only, couldn't the ending have been longer? Let us enjoy our victory, game designers! You don't want us to *leave* your wonderful worlds, do you?

Madison June 9, 2009 9:17 PM

Wow, it's pretty funny that I'd play this right after my power comes back after a storm. xD

I liked this game though. True, it was pretty short and easy, but it put a smile on my face.


I agree with Shudog about the Bowja the Ninja part. (And the other stuff.) This game is very similar to Bowja the Ninja, which also was a great series. But I doubt LW's getting a series.


FINALLY!!! Something I did without help, I am reaaaaally bad at those kind of games, but the circles made hotspots visible and the experience all around more enjoyable.

boatshoes June 9, 2009 9:58 PM

that was fun


completely agree with zach about not needing the in game link for the walkthrough.

dora nailed the review perfectly - short and simple but a gorgeous little game. considering the load time i had it must've been a large download, which explains how much info is needed to make a game so pretty.

kind of feel like the one click dog guys were just showing off what they can do visually. and for a free web game i must say it's one of the best looking ones that i have ever played.


Love the game, the graphics is superb and the world is well-made. It really brings the atmosphere. Very good design! I'm kinda remember wall-e when playing this game, one sole robot... in big world...

Is there any hidden message here? I mean, the robots was in boring routine before.. and now this sole robot able to think by freedom? ;)

Candibar June 9, 2009 10:26 PM

I cant get the train started ..i spin the wheel then pull the lever but wont start ahhhhhh


I loved the graphics and the story. One question - how was the guard robot (2nd to last stage) turned on? All the power was off. Maybe too short or too easy, but still very, very superb for a casual game. It definately hit the nail on the head when it comes to casual. Loved the atmosphere.


very good story and nicely put together but it felt like I was doing a walkthrough. the circles give everything away!!!

Coldfrog June 10, 2009 12:05 AM

The thing that amazed me most about the art was how smooth it was... The way things moved was probably better than just about any flash game I've seen. There were no stretched or odd images when a 3d object moved in a particular way, and everything was so fluid in motion. If only it was a little longer or harder. I struggled to give it a five but it was just a little too simple. I can't wait to see more from these guys!

Papachabre June 10, 2009 1:30 AM

Had I a cup o' Joe this game would have been perfect - it's just the right length for a coffee break. I love the story, graphics and music. The puzzles could have been a bit tougher but none-the-less this is a solid 10-15 min game.



Try getting out of the train again.


Following the steps of Bowja and Retardo, One Click Dog gave us another fun and beautiful break from work.

Though it was easier from the previous games of its category (due to the marked objects) the grafics are much more pleasant for the eye.

You made a piece of art for us, make it a little more challenging and you will have a masterpiece.

We thank you!


Nice little (albeit short) game, but if your cute little robot civilization has one single power source without which the whole blasted thing will shut down indefinitely, wouldn't you want to have SOME sort of redundancy in place so some clumsy robot tripping on the cord doesn't destroy civilization? You know, stick a backup battery into that little robot hammering away at the core, an extra power cord going to the power source a solar panel or two... something like that. This isn't rocket science. I don't care how highly advanced your cute-little robot civilization happens to be, if nobody there can figure that out they deserve their little 10,000 year nap.

RedRevolver June 10, 2009 11:42 AM

I wuvved this! :) And it definitely was simple, if I could complete it w/o walkthrouugh! Haha. LY JIG.


It was, as they said, a fast game. But incredibly enjoyable none the less. I particularly liked the art and use of 'silhouette 3D' and the object interaction system. I think quite a few games could benefit from it. I know I like solving puzzles far more than hunting for stuff or clicking the wrong pixel. I'll definitely want to see their next game!


Not so much a "point and click" as a "click here" game, but very sweetly done.

Splurgy June 10, 2009 1:07 PM

Well this was lovely! I must say it was very easy but for someone who's burned out from revision, not having to think too hard is quite pleasant.
I don't suppose JIG would consider a "You don't have to think too hard whilst playing this" section, do you?

shadowscribe June 10, 2009 2:41 PM

Would be great to have the option to turn circle hints on/off. Game atmosphere is fantastic! For a longer game, hints could even be graduated in difficulty.

brokenrecord June 10, 2009 2:48 PM

bummer. As a few people mentioned above, there's a bug on the level with the crane where the top and bottom separate. other than that, great game

brokenrecord June 10, 2009 3:05 PM

Alright. It was worth restarting. What an adorable little game. I really hope there's more! (btw to avoid the glitch, don't back up the crane again to the right)


I loved it, I really appreciate games that are super easy, because I'm usually terrible at this type of game but I can beat ones like this!


Ahhhh....so short but so satisfying. Reminds me of the game that brought me to JIG in the first place (Samorost)...these are the games that keep me coming back! ROBOT JAZZ!!! More, more!


Ummmm...Wall-e rip off much?

Nah joke. It was a great game I LOVED the music and the graphics. Kudos to the maker.


I too, wish it was more challenging and longer. But that's only because it is so thoroughly enjoyable that I wanted it to last longer.

Big praise to the creators and to JIG for featuring it! THANKS!

firebhlade June 10, 2009 5:08 PM

cute game

a bit too easy but a good diversion from work and such
a sequel that is slightly more challenging would be very very nice :D

jingidy June 10, 2009 6:44 PM

I love the circles indicating where you can click. Every point-and-click game should have that so there's no more pixel hunting!


Lovely. Beautiful graphics - nice, non-frustrating gameplay - enjoyable.
Can't wait to see more stuff like this.


I can understand how people might be frustrated with the lack of difficulty, but I thought it was perfect. If you're looking for a puzzle game, you'll probably be disappointed. But if you're just looking for a relaxing experience, I think you will be very satisfied (as I was).

I think Dora hit the nail on the head with this remark in the review; "There are times when it's more like watching an animated short than playing a game."

That's exactly how I interpreted it: more an interactive story than a game. And boy was it a beautiful story. The art and music went together like chocolate and peanut butter, and were just as tasty a combination! There was enough interaction to keep me personally involved in the story, as if I were the protagonist, but not enough difficulty to snap me out of the story and remind me that I was playing a "game."

I didn't run into the crane bug, but if that is fixed, I would consider this a perfect game--it does exactly what it sets out to do, and it does it in style.

LH8VD69 June 11, 2009 7:39 AM

The links won't work for me, but I played it on the host site ok.

Phillip k June 11, 2009 11:23 AM

My biggest problem with these games is that they have sweet music, but don't give credit (maybe they made the music?). I would like to find this band though.

Graphics: 10/10
Concept: 9/10
Music: 10/10
Sounds: 9/10
Difficulty: 4/10

I must say the feel that the game had was like no other. This games gets to you, it's like a movie. Made me want to watch Wall-e!


MickGJ hit it exactly. This isn't a "point and click" game but a "click here" exercise.

If they made the hot spots a little more visually apparent and got rid of the grey circles it would be a much better game. Just have the arrow change to a hand when I'm hovering over the hot spot and I can figure the rest out. As it plays now this is more of a "See Jane Run" kind of point and click primer than an actual game.

Kinda fun, neat story, and FANTASTIC soundtrack. Still listening to it right now as a matter of fact.

Da-da-dum, Da-da-dum-dit-doo, Da-da-dum, Dee doodle-dit-doo....


I rather liked the "click here" concept. It changed it from a regular "where on earth is the blasted hotspot??" point and click into an interactive story.

And it was an enjoyable story. Nope, nothing tricky about the puzzles, but I didn't have to solve puzzles to get to the end of the last book I read, either.


I can NOT get past the bit where he has to

align the three rotating bars horizontally. They just keep rotating!



That code in the beginning is just not working. Stuck there already.

Anonymous June 12, 2009 8:25 PM

I am also stuck on the first code, it just doesn't seem to be working...


sad... the train just crashes down

Dr. Worm June 14, 2009 10:46 PM

Seems like there have been a lot of games about cute little robots lately.

I agree with the person that said that the graphics are like Vectorpark's. The animation is very clean.


That was very cute. I liked it :-)

anonymous June 16, 2009 11:37 PM

The code in the fisrt part of the game will not work for me!

Hollow Ichigo June 17, 2009 3:32 AM

Heres The First Code

use then darkend ones instead of the light ones

anonymous June 17, 2009 2:52 PM

i need help with the first thing to do im stupid

Pon-chan June 17, 2009 6:01 PM

Cute game. Only bit of trouble was the circles puzzle but I managed to figure it out (it was actually really easy :P). My question is, if the robots are supposedly "alive", does unplugging the guard robot mean the same thing as "killing" it? :P


I really need somehelp figuring out how to align the circles so that they make a horizontal line, they just keep rotating!


Excellent game, five stars. The only complaint I have is the abrupt ending, could it be more elaborate like the introduction?

NotAnYmous July 1, 2009 2:29 PM

I would say that, while it is, in some contexts, possible to kill a "robot," this is not one of those contexts. Specifically, for the action of "killing" a "robot" to be possible, the "robot" in question would have to be defined, according to Merriam-Webster, as "an efficient, insensitive person who functions automatically." However, we are dealing with literal machines, who are not living creatures; Therefore, you didn't take away the life of a machine, because it wasn't living in the first place! Philosophically, I could probably be proven wrong on many accounts, but I'm not going to delve into that. It's way too confusing.

NotAnYmous July 1, 2009 3:19 PM

*Oh, and, uh, sorry for the double post(I don't know how to edit my posts, or if it's even possible to),but I must say, this game is very interesting. I liked the quaint little robot, the monochrome/sepia color scheme, and the jazzy, laid-back, elevator and/or lobby music. It's like if Wall-E was plunked down into a noir film, but he turned out to be less of a fish out of water than you'd think, although managing to still be a bit clumsy. Surprisingly, these disparate ideas manage to work together to create somewhat of a steampunk type atmosphere: The modern/futuristic elements(i.e. the robots)are mixed in with older elements(i.e. the train).All in all, this is a very nicely made game.


Wow, this game was amazing, beautiful, and adorable. The music and sepia style set a wonderful, easy-going mood. This game had its funny little moments and is good for a quick cheering up. I love the song, being a huge fan of jazz, and would love to know where to get it. This is unique and unlike any other game I've played and I love playing it. It was easy, but not so much that it got boring, and I thought it was an overall adorable. My only complaint is this: Why can't I find a place to download that wonderful song?


Everyone else has already said it, but this is such a cute way to spend a few minutes. And the jazz is definitely tops.

The way I see it, I think of it more as a short visual story than an actual game, wherein the real point is more about admiring the artwork and story than actually "beating" or "winning" anything. *shrug*

Mastermind July 31, 2009 5:27 PM

The soundtrack has got to be the best jazz I've ever gotten from a point-and-click game. But the one thing in this awesome little adventure that has forced me to ragequit is the puzzle with the wheels with the bars on them!! I despise puzzle. It is impossible.

scubadude August 12, 2009 1:08 PM

How do you beat the last part? Very good game, cool. Love the jazz.


what a great game. reminds me of windowsill...


A completely amazing concept. So yes, the game's too easy and too short, but somehow I feel that's beside the point. The graphics are mesmerising and like nothing I've seen before, the music is completely perfect. If they'd made a game where the robot just went about doing nothing really, I'd still play it and be charmed.


Too short and easy, but otherwise very enjoyable. Too bad I can't hear the soundtrack since I'm at work...

menschenjaeger February 24, 2010 10:02 AM

I revisited this one after playing Mogo-Mogo. My feelings on it haven't changed much - it was lovely, but it felt more like interactive art than a game. There really wasn't anything to work out: Click on whatever is highlighted and follow the game to its inevitable conclusion. In this way it was like a more complex and visually impressive Wheat-Straw Girl. Mogo-Mogo, despite some gameplay flaws, then becomes the superior "game" in that there is an element of skill involved, and there is more problem solving.


It's like an interactive Pixar short! I love it!

sapphire399 September 5, 2010 4:14 AM

i can't seem 2 do the train track part


i can't do the stupid spinning wheels


haha this game's hilarious actually and good music


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