I have recently been playing a fair few card, board and strategy games so a risk like title seemed like a good one to try out. I’ve got a few on my other devices but for my iPad I picked what looked like a more commercial & friendly one. Bad choice.
I’m not sure whether there were options as I was very quickly thrust in the middle of a battle. As a few AI moves quickly went on around me the world changed colour. Eventually it stopped for my go. There were a few blue regions left, which I assumed was me. I identified some vulnerable looking areas and placed my forces to conquer Southern Europe through to the Middle East given the highest opposition in my path was one dude. First attack with my large army on an empty square failed. Try again and succeeded. This repeated a couple of times as I made a pitiful attempt to win some territory. Next go I lost half of my land and three goes in it was already as good as over.
I figured it was shite luck and tried again. Dammit… Last to play and my forces are scattered again. Feck sake I can’t beat much weaker territories. Oh shite I got conquered easily. I’ll try again. Same. One more time. Same. Quit. Deleted.
So obviously I got beaten and raged a bit, however this raises a key issue. The game beat a new player very quickly. In my handful of attempts I was always one of the last to start (i.e. the enemies had all done some conquering), which really should not be happening. Games need to give players a positive initial experience. I don’t mind losing on the first go and even second or third if I feel like I’m making progress but there was none of that to be had here.
With the PC, board game and console market you get a lot more of the player’s time to help them get into the groove but mobile games do need to give a more immediate impact. There’s less investment from the player so they are less likely to stick with a game. This is why it is imperative that mobile games give you a win early on and also let you know why you are failing. Maybe I missed a key action which led to my army of 6 losing to an army of 2, but the game never showed me this. In the absence of an explanation for my defeat in a genre that I’m usually decent at, my blame lies on the game being a bit shit.
Losing wasn’t the only issue I had. The game as a whole felt like a cheap sub par version of some diddy game that I have on Android. Artwork was pretty weak, although that’s usually a non-issue for me. More to my dislike was what happened after a rare successful attack. As with other risk games you would move your troops across but is was very poorly done. It would clearly show how many troops had been moved yet the territory with your existing troops had no indicator. The poor presentation of this stage also made it unclear that you were to move your troops, how to stop and so forth. Given this is a simple and essential stage, it surprises me how poor they made it.
To expand the gameplay some cards were sometimes randomly shown. Aside from enabling / disabling when I touched them, there was no indication as to what the fuck was going on. A nice big title would have worked a treat. In the absence of an obvious way to play the cards I sold them for more troops on the next go… Which of course were wasted on futile attacks against weak defences.
So I’ve ranted a bit. Suffice to say this is the worst risk style game that I’ve played. It fails to communicate what the fuck is going on and will give you a hiding in the process. I’m sure if you wanted to learn there’s some help and guidance buried somewhere but you’ll be as well playing one of the many other much better games out there!