Hey guys, today I will review a mobile game for the first time. Due to reviewing a mobile, there will hardly be a need for a storyline section or a graphics and SFX section, so instead I will do just general, gameplay and finally, personal thoughts, and I will cover everything you need to know with these three sections. So, without further ado:
Table of Contents
Clash Royale was developed by Supercell, the company that created the hit mobile game Clash of Clans.
In fact, the two games share the same fictional universe, even though they are not connected at all gameplay-wise.
While the games are developed and maintained by the same company, and being part of the same universe (which means that the characters remain the same), you will find that most players prefer one of the two games, and rarely (if at all) bother with the other.
Clash Royale is a belongs to the real-time strategy genre (RTS), but it combines elements from RTS, MOBAs, collectible card games (CCGs), and tower defense games (TDs).
Clash Royale was the first and best of its kind, and as is usual with these cases, Clash Royale spawned many clone games.
The game became a massive success, having reached one billion in revenue within its first year of release.
The game is frequently updated by the developers, and balance changes come on a monthly basis.
The game also has a promising esports scene, and it gives the chance to amateurs to compete by hosting an annual tournament in which everyone who wins it can compete in the Clash Royale League (you must win 20 games, and you are kicked out if you get three losses).
Furthermore, there is always something new going on in the game, so it really never gets or feels old, as you can stop playing for 3 months and return to a game with completely new and/or different features.
Let’s not forget about the new cards that get released every 3 months.
But is the game’s gameplay as fun and exciting as its popularity implies? Let’s move on to the gameplay section to find out.
As mentioned, Clash Royale is a mix of RTS, MOBA, CCG, and TD. That is very evident in its gameplay.
After you play the tutorial, you are tasked with building your deck from some available starting cards and one or two new ones that you unlocked. You will then be pitted against other players who also play against their deck.
The starting pool of cards you can choose from is very small, but as you win and gain more trophies, more and more cards will become available to unlock.
The main way to unlock cards is by in-game chests. You win chests by winning games.
There are different rarities for chests, and the more common a chest is, the less card it gives and the more common they are. But, the more common a chest is, the less time it will take to unlock it.
The minimum is three hours. You can unlock them early using gems, which is an in-game currency that requires real money.
Cards are split into four different rarities; common, rare, epic, legendary. These don’t determine power, they determine how often you can get one, and how easy it is to find one.
The cards also have levels that determine their power compared to other cards.
The levels range from 1 to 13, and each rarity has a different starting level. Commons begin from level 1, rares from level 4, epics from 6 and legendaries from 9.
There is also what is known as tournament standard levels. You can upgrade these cards by collecting enough stacks of the one you want to upgrade (the higher the level, the more card it will require), and by spending gold, which is gained by winning, chests, and many other ways.
Each win against an opponent gives you trophies. The more trophies you collect, the higher your arena will be, and the better and stronger your opponents will get. This is called ladder climbing.
Generally, grinding something to level 13 is quite hard and tedious (unless you pay money), which is where the tournament standards come. The tournament standard level is 9.
Essentially, these exist to give all players a chance to show their true skill without needing to pay.
Every tournament and event that is hosted is played at tournament standard level, so higher leveled players will be leveled down for the tournament.
Now for the actual gameplay.
Each card in your 8-card deck represents one of three possible types: a troop, a spell or a building.
These cards also have their own elixir cost. You gain elixir passively over time, and you must manage it in order to maximize your chances of winning.
When you play a card, it is manifested in the field. Each player has his own side, which is separated by the river in the middle.
There are two entrances to the other side of the field, the bridges on the left and right.
Your purpose is to strategically play your units, spells, and building in such a way, that you get to destroy more enemy towers, than the opponent, does yours.
Each player has 3 towers, two weaker princess towers left and right, and a stronger king tower in the back middle.
If the king tower is destroyed, then it is an automatic game over for the one who lost it (similarly to chess).
Your towers also have a level that determines their stats, and you can level them up with experience, which is gained upon leveling up a card.
Each game has three minutes. If three minutes have passed and both players have the same number of towers destroyed, the game goes to overtime sudden death, where that first player to get a tower within 3 more minutes wins. If those three minutes pass without any player destroying any tower, then the game ends as a draw.
After the first 2 minutes passed, the game will produce double the amount of elixir.
All of the above
The game also has a 2v2 mode where there are no trophies and you can either play with a friend or a stranger.
Finally, there are clans. A clan is good as you can ask for donations for any common or rare card you have and want to level up without involving RNG, and you can donate cards you don’t want in order to make some money and experience.
There are also the clan wars, which is split into two days, the collection day and the war day.
By competing in clan wars, clans can earn clan trophies which determine their individual week, plus, every player who competed in at least one war per two weeks gains a bonus chest depending on the clan’s best position those past weeks.
In the collection day, you play three games with a choice of four different game modes (the rotation changes frequently), and depending on if you won or lost, and your place in the ladder, you gain some cards for the next day.
In war day, you must draft a deck from all the cards your clan won the previous day and fight against a member of another clan who has done the same.
Generally, Clash Royale gains a lot of praise, and for a good reason. Have I even mentioned it can be played on any device from 2014 onward?
The only complaint that the game gets is about its supposed pay-to-win system.
My opinion about this is that firstly, yes, you can get an advantage by paying money, and this advantage is almost always unfair.
It’s not like if someone has better levels than you, then the difference is small, you can literally lose games just because you had weaker cards. But it doesn’t matter.
For starters, if you lose to someone who actually paid, or grinds more than you, then it’s ok, the ladder isn’t going anywhere.
Theoretically, you can someday attain max level to everything without paying a dime, and then only skill will matter.
But even if you are impatient, reaching the tournament standards is pretty routine, and you can show your true skills within tournaments and events.
The esports scene doesn’t even require you to be max leveled, you just need the tournament standards. So, while it might seem unfair at the start, honestly, you just get used to it.
There are times though when the game can be outright infuriating, if that happens, just close the game, and take a one or two day
And in the end, Supercell needs to make money, and while one might argue that they could do other things to get money, and still keep being fair, that’s what they chose, so it’s something you must accept if you want to play the game.
Besides, they themselves are doing what they can to keep free-to-play players satisfied. Believe me, getting the cards you want without paying is a thousand times easier than when the game began.
I already stated my opinions about mobile games in general here, and how they should be preferably be played when you have nothing better to do, or don’t have the time or space to open your PC.
But Clash Royale certainly can be played more seriously, and is worth devoting time to get better at it.
Edit: Clash Royale has released the all-new (if you don’t play Clash of Clans) Season Pass, where there are free prizes for everyone, but tons of prizes, perks, and bonuses for those who pay a buck extra.
There is even an all-time exclusive tower skin that you can never get EVER, and there is no other way to take it. And the best part, the seasons change every month, so if you miss it then tough luck. I’m heavily disappointment by this development for 2 reasons:
First, the game took a step in the opposite direction of making things easier for free to play players (which I can’t really blame as they need revenue (not that they don’t have enough already but whatevs)).
Two, the exclusive tower skin. If for any reason (not having a job, being tight economically, etc, etc) you can’t pay for the pass, you’ll spend the rest of your lifespan (your Clash Royale lifespan) being reminded on a daily basis that someone has something better than you simply because he has more money or richer parents and that you could have done ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to get it, and will never have the chance to ever get it again. Sure, you can pay for one you really like, but again, firstly, that’s a nightmare for the collectors who want everything, and second, who’s to say you won’t like the next one better.
Honestly, I’m probably just venting here, but I can’t hide my disappointment. However, the game doesn’t change much but it will lose 1 point from its personal score due to becoming more P2W again.
General Rating: 7.0
Do you play Clash Royale? What is your favorite card? If you don’t do you like my review.
If you want to add something or have any questions, feel free to ask them in the comments, and I will answer as soon as I can.
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