You’ll often hear us bemoan the presence of a strong narrative here at MBU when speaking on the topic of mobile or casual titles. It seems that in an effort to trim the RPG experience into a suitably streamlined format for use on tablets and phones the focus is always shifted to combat and nine times out of ten the narrative experience (what some would argue to be the ‘role playing’ aspect) is lost in favour of grinding levels. This is not the case with Celsius Heroes.
The rise of the ‘Tapper’ and its popularity remains something of a mystery to us here at MBU as long-time gamers, but its a genre of game that’s growing in popularity on mobile due to the casual nature of its requirements, endless run time and extreme simplicity that makes multitasking a breeze. Battleborn Tap attempts to fuse the essence of that with an RPG and the results are mixed.
After an abysmal first instalment and a sequel that tried hard but failed to better the likes of ‘Zenonia’ on the early iStore, Com2uS returns with a third stab at the KRPG genre and proves that sometimes ‘third time lucky’ really is true.
Most RPG titles fall easily into a Fantasy or Science Fiction setting. One of the many things that makes Monster Mountain special is that it presents a post-modern twist on the fantasy-dystopia that presents a rich and vibrant world that could take place tomorrow . . .
For those who crave something a little more old-school in their mobile RPG experience, the Gurk series provides a decidedly retro experience inspired by the likes of older ‘Ultima’ titles and replicates the trappings of a Commodore 64 game.
Puzzlewood Quests is a fusion of quiz-like puzzle game and light social RPG that seems to hit the sweet-spot between the two. At no point does it feel like it’s compromised the RPG mechanics to make way for more complex puzzles, whilst resisting the urge to become too fiddly with stats and character pimping to be a good quiz.
Essentially a remastering of the unreleased ‘Shining Force: Gaiden’ and the Game Gear exclusive ‘Shining Force: The Sword of Hajya’, Shining Force CD manages to bring two relatively light experiences together into a more meaty package.
Sadly after the release of ‘Sword of Hajya’, Sega decided not to translate any more mobile offerings from the Shining Force series onto the Game Gear, leaving it with just 1 out of 3 titles available. In over 20 years since its release it’s become painfully obvious that they have no intention of modifying this. Luckily Shining Force Central has a dedicated group of fans who have.
Fusions of Match-3 mechanics and RPGs have been a prevalent sub-genre since ‘Puzzle Quest’ first thought to do it, and the mobile market has been swarmed with a multitude of similar games. Some, such as ‘Spellfall’ play it straight but do so with a degree of polish that makes them stand out, whilst titles such as ‘Might and Magic: Clash of Heroes’ have developed their own very unique takes on the formula. Hero Emblems is similar to what the ‘Dragon Quest’ franchise might have produced.
Phantom Brave is very much a turn for the unexpected from Nippon Ichi, a game that (for the most part) puts away the upbeat comedy styling’s of their other titles and instead tells a story that’s bitter-sweet.