So I didn't get much chance to blog on my trip to London as the schedule was very busy. I am back now and will put out some of the reviews I worked on while I was travelling. Due to long delays I actually got chance to play many of the mobile games and they really did help with relieving the boredom of modern day air travel (along with some classic TNG episodes!) It was good to branch out and play some games on another format to PC/XBOX. Enjoy the reviews!
Battle of Polytopia
Platform: Android (also available on Steam Fall 2019)
My Game Time: Approx 12 Hours
Released: Feb 2016
Game Description: The award winning turn based strategy game with low poly graphics. Lead Your civilization to victory by expanding your empire and researching new technologies. Enjoy bigger and more customizable maps than in the mobile version. Play online against your friends on iOS or Android.
My Summary: An addictive and entertaining turn based strategy game that is great for on the go play but does lack the depth of a full PC style title. The games colourful graphics and fast paced action is perfect for the mobile generation and I found it at its best when I needed a quick 10 minute turn based fix.
This game opens up with a unique style and some easy to navigate menus (always vital for a mobile game). I was instantly taken aback by the bright contrast of colours and this really does draw your attention to the game and makes you more curious to explore. Polytopia is a turn based game based on gathering stars as resources, expanding your cities and making sure you have enough units to fight off your enemy rivals. The graphics of the game are in a simple polygon style but they do a great job of standing out on the small screen. The user interface is well designed and always simple and easy to navigate, once again the bright colours make this a pleasure to enjoy in the mobile format.
The game allows you to pick from 4 starting civilisations that come free with the base purchase. Each of the civilisations has a unique style and bonus that changes the way you play the game. This is a really cool concept and even the starting land is different depending on the tribe that you start the game with. There are others available but you need to pay to unlock them. This is one aspect of mobile gaming that drives me crazy! Id rather pay a little bit more for the full game and have all the civilisations open to me from the start than make little payments for each one. This seems to be the overall approach in the mobile market so I cant be too critical! The tech tree is quite intuitive but often you need to follow a certain path depending on the resources around your cities and the civilisation picked. This can somewhat limit the strategies available, however this works well for the quick paced nature of this game. You can collect and build many resources, all leading to an increase in city population. This in turn adds to your overall score which goes towards winning the map you are playing on.
The music is basic but this actually suits the style of the game and overall I found it to be quite entertaining in short bursts. The sound effects do the right things when you do something good (upgrade, gather resources) but the combat noises are particularly weak and don't add much to the overall experience. Overall the sound in the game works for me in the mobile format and do fit the style of the game but would not be acceptable in a full PC release.
One thing that is poorly done with the game is diplomacy, or the total lack of it in fact! You don't ever know if a nation is going to attack you or not, so often the best course of action is to attack first and take the enemy off guard. Otherwise the AI will normally remain friendly with you for a few turns and then launch a surprise attack when you least expect it. This is not ideal and would need to be fleshed out to make this a decent PC game. Games progress at a very fast pace which is very enjoyable in the mobile format. I was sat on the plane waiting to take off and was quite engrossed in a game I was playing. The aim of the game is to out score your rivals and working out how to do this efficiently can be an interesting challenge. Also after completing a game (approx 30 mins) you can try and beat previous scores to gain more stars for each civilisation available.
Review Score: 73/100
Overall its a fun experience and one of the better turn based games available on Android and IOS. The game is fast paced and does have some reasonable depth with different strategies available to the player that will lead to victory. I did find the turn based nature addictive but would have liked to see a little more polish and options presented in some areas of the game. It does a great job of creating a turn based strategy experience in the mobile format. Still....I do miss my PC! Have a good evening all!
I have decided to switch to scoring games out of 100 as it allows me some more flexibility in my approach. If you enjoyed this review please get behind it with your up votes which will enable me to produce more content. Please comment with any games you would like to see reviewed next!