Clash Royale is something of a phenomenon now, played by hundreds of millions of players worldwide. I installed this about two years ago and I was instantly hooked. Its unique blend of deck building, live action strategy and a healthy community spirit is highly addictive - I pretty much open it up every single time I check my phone!
The game is based in the Clash of Clans universe, however the game itself is a different beast entirely. Play revolves around building a deck of eight cards from an ever expanding roster (over 70 at present). Once you’ve picked your team you unleash different forces on your opponent’s towers whilst simultaneously defending your own.
The key to success is balancing your deck to handle as many threats as possible, while also unleashing as many creative attacks as you can. To play a card you must pay the elixir cost required and as you spend your elixir points, your elixir bar will slowly regenerate. Skeletons, Goblins and Bats are very cheap but deal little damage, stronger cards like Golem and Lava Hound deal huge damage. You also get ground troops, aerial troops and spells that can all greatly affect your tactics.
The graphics and sound are on point, with every element lovingly created. However the action is so fast and frantic you barely notice half the time.
As you gain more experience you can level up your cards and towers to give them a bit more clout. To get the most out of this game you want to either join or build a clan with fellow Clash players. In your clan hub you can request donations of cards you are looking to power up and donate cards yourself. You can also monitor the various quests and challenges available, join in chats and organise friendlies to try out new decks and practice advanced strategies. There are lots of different game modes and the developers encourage you to try them all out with different incentives each month.
Unsurprisingly there is a strong E-Sports following for this game. I think the appeal lies in the almost infinite complexity of your battles. I learn something new almost every day I play this game, and there is a brilliant community of gamers and developers helping you push your performance.
There is a little bit of a pay to win element like all freemium games, but you certainly don’t have to. Over 2 years of playing I think I paid £10 once, and I only know this because it said so on my phone bill. I have no idea what i actually bought and have no memory of this transaction so I must have been drunk! When you start playing competitively, you enter tournament mode which makes sure each players decks are equally powered, meaning your success is down to your skill alone.
It's a testament to a games greatness when you continue to play it long term. i don't see my interest in the ever evolving world of Clash disappearing any time soon.
In a future post I will outline my favourite deck to use and discuss my most useful strategies. Also I may well start my own clan – could Wob Wob Rob become a force to be reckoned with in the Clash Royale universe? Watch this space!